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  • Lake Monticello Blue Cats

    South Carolina anglers in search of big blue catfish can hook them right now at Lake Monticello, but patience is an even bigger factor than normal this time of year. It’s typical for Capt. Chris Simpson of Fightindablues Charters ( to put his clients on blues up to 60-pounds this time of year, but the big fish haven’t come cheap in terms of time invested.

    “Anglers looking for a big blue catfish won’t find a better place than Lake Monticello,” Simpson said of the upper midlands reservoir, “but they need to be prepared to stay all day.” Simpson likened this type of fishing to deer hunting. “We mark big fish on the depth finder, anchor down, lay down a spread of baited hooks on 8-12 rods, then wait,” he said. Once set up, Simpson will give each spot about an hour and a half. If a fish bites, he’ll spend another 15 minutes in that hole; if nothing happens, he’ll move on to another spot.

    Simpson uses Carolina-rigs with live bait and cut bait.

    Brian Cope
    SC Sportsman Field Reporter