With a couple of fronts pass through, bass fish was slow and even the pan fish seemed to slowed down quite a bit. I stopped by Dan’s to bring him some tools he needed for his computer and we started talking about the crazy weather and slow fishing and how normally that start of June would mean the start of catfish activities. One thing lead to another, we were talking about blue catfish and how we would love to hook into one of those big boys.
Not soon after I left, I got a call from Dan (Pondboy’s DuPage Fishing Guide Service) to see if I would be up for going to LaSalle Lake for some catfishing with him and Ted (SoonerBass of DupageAngler). I quickly clear the schedule with my wife and called him back. By that time, the party has grown to include Marty (Dupageangler.Com Founder Wacky Bass) and Jason (Darkstar of DupageAngler) and it’s going to be a fun trip regardless of what we do.
It’s 4:00 AM and I drove up to Dan’s and he’s all ready to go. I can tell he’s super excite by how the pitch of his voice goes up a couple of keys. Then He told me the best story I heard this year: You see, Dan’s been trying to catch a grass carp in a nearby pond and had prep a certain area a couple of night before. That night before our trip, he went out to see if there is any carp activity. To his dismay, there was nothing. However, he notice a school of shads was right off the shoreline and he was able to scoop a bag full of it.
After hearing his story my voice cracked. I was excited, because I think this is a sure sign that one of us will hook onto a blue catfish.
We arrived just after the lake opens. The wind was a bit strong and the sky looks threatening, but we were determined. We can’t let the god of pond shads down. We quickly gather our stuff and hurried to our desired spot.
We got situated quickly and was cutting bait, rigging up, and got our rigs in the water in no time. My rig was a Carolina rig with a 1oz weight and a 3ft 15ln mono leader with 2/0 circle hook on a 8’6 noodle rod. Shortly after I made my cast, I was chatting with Marty about his injured thumb, and his latest wacky fishing adventures when He suddenly yelled, “You got a fish on!”
I turned and quickly grab my bending rod and gave it a big sweeping hook set and then I knew the fish was really on. I took my time fighting the fish and reeling it in not wanting to lose it. When it finally broke water, we got really excited because it was a blue catfish! Not a giant, but still a nice fish. Dan was able to net the big boy and I was soon holding my first blue cat. Dan’s pond shads worked!
The shads continued to work its wonder. Marty soon landed the biggest blue of the day, Dan followed with another blue, then Jason and Ted both landed 2 nice blue cats. All of them on those special, magical, pond shads that Dan scooped up. We continue to have fun catching small channel cats after the shads were gone on chicken liver and crawlers and finish our day on LaSalle Lake just a few minutes past noon.
Adventures like this doesn’t happen everyday. Everything was perfect from Dan’s pond shads to everyone catching our target species. This day would not have happened if it wasn’t for DupageAngler.com because this day was truly something special.