"Sometimes it's not all about catching fish but instead about getting out and enjoying all the wonders God has made! Thanks for visiting Santee Pro Guide Service and may God bless you." - Capt. Barney
"Sometimes it's not all about catching fish   but instead about getting out and enjoying   all the wonders God has made! Thanks for    visiting Santee Pro Guide Service and may    God bless you."                                                 - Capt. Barney

The Santee Cooper lake system consists of two lakes, Marion (110,600 acres) and  Moultire (60,400 acres). These two lakes are joined by the 6.5 mile Diversion Canal. These world-class fishing lakes were created from 1939-1942 for a hydroelectric project by the S.C. Public Service Authority, commonly known as "Santee Cooper". At present these lakes hold a world record Channel Catfish catch at 58 lbs. These lakes also hold the record for Black Crappie (5 lb), Chain Jack (6.4 lb) and Arkansas Blue (109.4 lb).


The Santee Cooper Lakes vary from shallow swamps and black water ponds to vast open water with a multitude of underwater structures. Lake Marion was not completely cleared leaving thousands of stumps, dead tree trunks and live cypress for the flourishing fish population. Lake Moultrie is 14 miles across at its widest point and more open. The lakes do not ice during the winter and there is no closed fishing season. Weather permitting, fishermen can fish year round.



Crappie fishing is a fast paced fishing style moving from brush pile to brush pile for the biggest and most fish on any of the over 100 man-made brush piles I have placed in the lakes over the years. These brush piles are updated each year as needed. This keeps piles in new form and the fish bedding there.


We can be fishing within minutes from leaving the marina or dock since most of the brush piles are local to these areas. We use light tackle  (9' fly rods with automatic fly reels and #6 line -mono). We fish vertically using jigs and live bait. There is no casting involved so even the kids have no problem using the tackle.


Crappie fishing is best from the end of March through November. Crappie move into shallow water in the spring to spawn on shallow brush piles. During the summer they move to the river channel on deeper brush piles and during the fall they will move into the mid depths. We fish different depths of water as the seasons progress. The majority of crappie are between 1 & 2 lb on average.


The largest crappie caught on boad to date is a 4 1/2 lb black crappie & 4 lb white crappie.



Catfish can be caught in different parts of the lake at different times of the year as well. There are 6 different species of catfish for you to catch but we target the monster blues and flatheads.


We use 7 1/2' Shakespeare catfish ugly sticks with 3000 Shakespeare reels spooled with 60 lb braided super line. The tackle will let you feel all the fight and is strong enough to bring in the bigs cats to the boat.


In the spring (January - May) we fish in the upper part of Lake Marion which we call the swamp consisting of stumps, live & dead cypress trees. This is a good time to catch the big boys as they are feeding heavily for the upcoming spawn in late spring. We fish anchored using flat lines on the bottom and we may move ten to twelve times in a fishing day.


During the winter and early spring months the water is cool and we will have to go to the fish instead of the fish coming to us. About the end of May we will move down the lake where we will use a drifitng technique and fish in the dead forest part of the lake with flat lines. We use several different baits: shad, herring, bream and Capt. Barney's special bait.


The largest catfish caught on board to date is an 82 lb blue catfish, 60 lb flathead and 45 lb channel cat.

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Santee Pro Guide
1741 Shulmer Road
Cameron, SC 29030


Capt. Barney Ulmer


Phone: (803) 308-0325


E-mail: santeeproguide@att.net