Catfish bite good at Jennings, 6 pound wiper caught


The catfish continue to be your best bet for fishing day and night. Lake Jennings has stocked another 1,000 pounds of Channel Catfish and anglers are getting a real fight as these cats are everything but small.

Panfish, especially Redears are biting just about anything they can get into their mouth and are mostly in the coves and around the fishing Float.

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  • The bass continue to bite but still no reports of anything large. A local anglers club for youths known as TBF’s San Diego Jr. Bass Anglers Club will be holding a Bass Tournament on August 9th. The club wanted the kids to experience a night tournament so they will be out on the lake on Saturday, August 9th from 4:00 pm to 11:00 pm but the entire lake will still open to the public.

    Now here’s a story to share which answers an all too often asked question. It has been one year this month when Lake Jennings stocked Wipers and anglers and staff ask, “Did the Wipers adapt?” The answer is “Yes” and Marcus Romero (local angler) has a story to share about he and a friend, Joe Labonte’s experience Sunday at Lake Jennings. The story goes like this.

    “We caught and released 8 catfish ranging from a pound to three pounds but that was not the highlight of our evening. Around 7pm, Joe reeled in a Wiper that weighed 6 lbs. 2 oz., was 22 inches in length, with a belly that was just less than 3 inches wide at the bottom. Joe was using braided line (20 lb. test) with a large chunk of mackerel. Of course we thought it was a catfish when he hooked it until it started ripping line off the spook like it was nothing. We were fishing the buoy line and were rather close to the shore. Joe and I haven’t caught any wipers since we were fishing the dam at Lake Pleasant in North Phoenix but we both agreed that this fish appeared healthier (with respect to weight and appearance) than any of the others we had caught in Arizona. If this fish is any representation of the surviving Wiper population, then we as anglers have something very promising to look forward to.”

    Marcus and Joe released all of the fish they caught including the Wiper in hopes that they and others can share the experience.

    Lake Jennings Campground continues to draw in campers from all over and if you haven’t made your reservation yet don’t wait any longer. If you like to have your camping experience a bit less occupied than come out during the week from Sunday through Friday and remember the lake will be open every day for one more week, than it’s back to Friday , Saturday and Sunday. The campground is a full house on weekends with only a few left for the upcoming weekend. Remember, if you haven’t made your plans for Labor Day weekend than you need to reserve soon because it will sell out.

    For more updates and to post comments visit and “Like Us” on Facebook or go to and search “Lake Jennings Recreation.” Visit the Lake Jennings website, check out the Lake Jennings Bulletin’s at the lake and campground or you can sign up for the weekly report and have information sent right to your email.

    Best Bass Spots: All along the banks
    Best Bass Lures/Bait: Crawdads and Kreature Baits

    Best Panfish Spots: The back of the coves and around the Fishing Float
    Best Panfish Lures/Bait: Mealworms, Wax Worms and Redworms

    Best Catfish Spots: Bird Trees and any of the Coves
    Best Catfish Bait: Mackerel, Chicken Liver, or Dough Bait

    The “Catch of the Week” goes out to:

    Eagle Cove: Vince Desroches of El Cajon caught a 4 ½ pound channel catfish using mackerel. Vince is joined by his wife and daughter. Nice catch Vince.

    Buoy Line at the Tower: Joe Labonte of Las Vegas caught a 6 pound 2 ounce 22 inch Wiper using mackerel.

    Please stop by the Bait & Tackle Shop on your way out our flag
    down a Ranger as they pass by and share your “Catch of the day”.

    What’s New:
    Lake Jennings is “Open Every Day in July” for the entire month with “Night Fishing” on Friday’s and Saturday’s.
    Also, Night Fishing will continue throughout September with the 27th being your last chance until the next year so don’t miss out!

    If you have a special event, company party or reunion Lake Jennings is available. Check out the Venue rental options at or call 619.390.1623.

    “Fee Schedule” changes took effect Thursday, July 17th and can be viewed online at To point the highlights, Half Day rentals are now allowed on both the first and second half of the day. For a discounted rate, boats can now be rented for the last three hours of the first or second half of the day. Full Day rentals on Fridays and Saturdays did increase during the “Night Fishing” only. The response has been very positive with high boat rentals, mostly for Half Day which allows more guests to have use of the boats.

    Water Temperature: 75 degrees at 10′.

    Note New Lake Hours:

      • OPEN AT 5:30 AM
      • CLOSE AT 12:00 AM (Midnight)
    • SUNDAY through Thursday
      • OPEN AT 5:30 AM
      • CLOSE AT 8:30 PM

    Fishing University at the Bait & Tackle Shop every Saturday at 10:00 AM
    For more info: Ranger Dave Acevedo 619.962.8394

    Shore fishing below the campground is available by purchasing permits at the campground Monday thru Thursday
    7:30 AM to 5:30 PM. Registered campers may purchase their permits the day before and start just before sunrise until just after sunset.

    Lake Jennings Campground has WiFi.
    Lake Jennings now offers a Weekly Rate for Camping.
    Lake Jennings Campground is open year round. Make your reservation.

    Catfish Stocking Schedule

    • May 19 (Start of the season) 3,000
    • June 9 1,000
    • June 30 1,000
    • July 21 1,000 
    • August 11 1,000
    • August 25 (3-Day Weekend – Labor Day 2,000
    • September 22 (Last stocking for the season) 1,000

    Total 10,000

    About Author

    Lake Jennings

    Lake Jennings is an 85 acre lake in Lakeside, 26 miles east of downtown San Diego. This deep clearwater reservoir is known for producing big largemouth bass and blue catfish. Jennings also stocks rainbow trout frequently in the winter months, with fresh fish being stocked about every 2 weeks.


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