Here are some great photos of the Melvin Price Lock and Dam near Alton, IL. This is a great place to fish- I forgot how much fun it was just to set some lines out and see what you can do. I got a new Ugly Stick 9' catfish rod, along with a new Tidewater reel, loaded with 30# Shakespeare red cajun line. What a great outfit! I cannot wait to take it to the Outer Banks next year to surf fish. I think that is one of the things I love most about fishing the big rivers- it reminds me in some ways of fishing the ocean. The rigs are the same, and the bait fishing concepts are the same as well.
Caught a little Flathead Catfish at first (I caught a couple of other fish, but lost the rig in the rip-rap). It was a small one, but fun to set the hook on. Later, I caught a HUGE smallmouth Buffalo. It looked like a cross between a Drum and a Carp. It fought me hard. I approximate it was probably about 32-33" across and probably weighted in at around 8-10#. Fought really hard like a carp. I brought it over to another person who was fishing, and he took the photo. I should have attached it- you would laugh! He got everything below where I was holding the fish up.-- note to self: always take one photo of a big fish WITHOUT you, just in case we cannot get the camera figured out. Oh well, no sweat. I will catch other big fish. Used night crawlers all day. Next time I am out, I am going to use cut bait as well (guy next to me caught a really nice Blue Catfish on cut bait, using the same rig I was fishing)