Fishing the Fifty

My Quest to Fish All 50 States


Tennessee was my second day of fishing with Mike Mitchell of Southern Cats Guide Service (; we had had a successful day of fishing in Alabama the day before.  As I mentioned in the description for Alabama, Mike put a client on a 102-pound catfish and no one knows where the big catfish are better than he does.


We targeted blue catfish on the Tennessee and Hiwassee Rivers northeast of Chattanooga, Tennessee.  Unlike the sunny day we had had in Alabama the day before, the fog was so thick in Tennessee that you could barely see the shore.  It gave the fishing a fascinating and eerie feel, especially when you heard the wildlife moving on the shore and in the water, but could not see anything.  I had much better luck fishing in Tennessee; I caught eight blue catfish, with the biggest being a 48-pound, 42-inch trophy.  The other seven ranged from six pounds to an 18-pound, 34-incher.

Tennessee Welcomes You

Shoreline through the fog

My 18-pound, 34-inch blue catfish, caught 17 minutes later (eligible for trophy by length)

My first Tennessee fish, a seven-pound blue catfish

My 48-pound, 42-inch trophy blue catfish

Birds in the fog

Storm coming through Chattanooga that produced tornadoes throughout the area