Where to Catch Trophy Catfish

The Top 12 States to Catch Trophy Catfish

On this list you will find the top twelve states to fish for trophy catfish such as flatheads, heavyweight blues, and channel catfishes. These states feature the type of catfish that will break your rod, snap your thread line, and fry your drags. Trophy catfish are monsters and with just the right bait and tackle you could possibly catch one of these thirty to one hundred pound whiskered warriors in a location listed below.

#12 Alabama

Presently, Alabama is one of the best states to fish for monster blue, trophy catfish. You have a high probability of catching this particular species of catfish in lakes Pickwick, Wilson, and Wheeler along the Tennessee River. There are several guided fishing tours available to make your life easier when it comes to catching these fighting fish like the company Southern Cat's Guide Service. Check out guides like, Mike Mitchell, who have been helping anglers catch countless 80-100 pound heavyweight monster blue catfish for decades.

#11 Arkansas

Throughout the years we have seen Arkansas waters produce some of the biggest catfish in the world such as a record breaking 116 pound heavyweight blue, 139 pound flathead, and a 51 pound channel cat. These massive trophy catfish can be found within several Arkansas rivers and lakes including the Mississippi, St. Francis, White, White Oak, Conway, Millwood, and Ouachita.

#10 California

Originally, California bore no natural born catfish. However, after several transplants from other states, the California catfish population has flourished with catfish growing to monstrous sizes. Today, anglers can find several species of catfish in California's bodies of water like 38-50 pound channel catfishes and 113 pound heavyweight blues. Visit lakes like Irvine or the San Vicente Reservoir to catch California's trophy catfish.

#9 Louisiana

Legislature has named Louisiana's Lake Des Allemands, 'The Universe's Catfish Capital'; because of the loads and loads of large blue, flathead, and channel catfish that are found throughout the bayou state's waters. Currently, the portion of the Mississippi River located within Louisiana is in the trophy fish limelight because it recently produced a 114 pound record breaking heavyweight blue catfish.

#8 Missouri

Over half a million catfish anglers fish Missouri's waters annually with no problem of finding the oversized whiskered warriors. A few favorite bodies of water to fish from in Missouri include the Mississippi River, Grand river, Osage River, Lake Truman, and Lake Montrose.

#7 North Dakota

Many disregard North Dakota as a monster channel cat producing state but contrary to popular belief it is a must visit locale. The channel catfishes here are often found to exceed 30 pounds and the state's very own Red River has been regarded as a United States top trophy channel cat fishery.

#6 Ohio

Ohio natives prefer to keep the state's amazing catfish angling scene a secret, but now the word is out and Ohio is a top fishing destination for trophy catfish. The Ohio River is chock full of channel catfishes, flathead, and heavyweight blues. Other noteworthy fishing destinations include the Muskingum River, Maumee River, Hoover Reservoir, and Lake Erie.

#5 Oklahoma

Trophy sized flatheads can be found in abundance throughout the state of Oklahoma. The best locales for catfishing in Oklahoma include Taft Lake, Lake Texoma, and the El Reno City Reservoir.

#4 South Carolina

South Carolina is a state well known for producing countless world-record breaking trophy catfish, like the 58 pound channel cat from the Santee Cooper Lakes - Moultrie and Marion. Although South Carolina may be one of the older states for catfishing, however its waters are still heavily populated with mega-cats.

#3 Tennessee

Recently, Tennessee has become a noteable state for trophy catfish angling. The Cumberland, Mississippi, and Tennessee Rivers all run through the state making it a great location for catfish opportunity. Locations like Fort Loudon, Nickajack, Chickamauga, and Watts Bar are producing trophy catfish in the triple digit weight range.

#2 Texas

Over one million catfish anglers reside in the state of Texas. This comes at no surprise for the state of Texas is flooded with catfish infested waters. The Colorado River, Brazo River, Lake Amistad, Lake Palestine, Lake Tawakoni, and Lake Livingston are all known for producing an abundance of blue ribbon channel catfishes and flathead catfish.

#1 Virginia

During 2011, Virginia was put on the map as an amazing destination of trophy catfishing when Buggs Island Lake produced a world record breaking 143 pound heavyweight blue. Other hotpots for catfishing in Virginia include the Potomac River, Lake Gaston, James River, Pamunkey River, and Blackwater River.