Sinclair Blue Cat Record Smashed

This giant fish was caught, officially weighed and released.

Hunter Galloway | May 3, 2016

Lake Sinclair has proven again that the middle Georgia reservoir on the Oconee River is home to some giant catfish. Brian Fitts, of Douglasville, landed a new lake record blue catfish on May 2 while fishing Sinclair with guide Paul Gourley, who has been a friend of Brian’s for 35 years.

Brian and three of his friends got together to head out with Paul Monday morning. All morning, Brian and his buddies were stacking up fish. Brian was using a whole shad for bait.

“We had real close to 400 pounds worth of fish,” said Brian. “As we started wrapping up our successful fishing trip, I made one last cast. Not long after making the cast, I felt something hammer the bait.”

Brian pulled back as hard as he could, and he said it felt like he was hung. At the same time, one of Brian’s buddies had a 20-pounder on. Brian quickly realized he had a huge fish hooked.

“I kept saying I had a big fish on, but no one really believed me,” said Brian. “Everyone started joking around thinking I was kidding. After a while of fighting this fish, everyone realized I wasn’t kidding. Paul kept telling me to take my time with this fish. With my bad back, it was a struggle fighting this fish.”

After a long, 30-minute fight with this huge fish, Brian started seeing big air bubbles surfacing. Then Brian knew it wouldn’t be long before he had his hands on this fish.

“This big fish kept staying under the boat until I finally saw the color of the fish coming to the surface,” said Brian. “Paul all the sudden reached down and grabbed this giant. I was truly shocked. Everyone was high fiving and in shock of the size of this huge blue cat.”

After a big celebration, Brian and everyone headed back to the boat ramp to have it officially weighed. They kept the fish in the water to keep it alive until they got to the boat ramp. Once they got to the boat ramp, the catfish would barely fit in the livewell. They made a drive to the Social Circle WRD Fisheries office to have it officially weighed. Brian was amazed. The official weight was 48-lbs., 9 ozs., which shatters the old lake record weight of 38-lbs., 7-ozs. caught in 2015. DNR said this fish was probably 18 to 20 years old. Brian decided to release it back.

“This was a phenomenal moment. Truly a fish of a lifetime. To share this moment with my best friend Paul and friends was great,” said Brian.

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