Give them what they are looking for. With an… Even if only 10% of the fish are hungry, that’s still plenty to see immediate action on a good wintering hole. Discover the best time of day to catch bass, trout, catfish, panfish, walleye, carp, and many more depending on the season, moon phases, and weather. And have been floating chicken liver under a Bobber for them and have done some good. When it comes to fishing line for catfish there are a few things you need to remember: Before your next channel catfishing trip make sure you have the right gear and more importantly the right line so you are setup for success. Mornings and Nights. Another great way to find a wintering hole is by looking at the land topography around the lake. But if you’re looking to catch a monster, there are a few things you need to know. Items like depth, wind, cover, structure, water temperature, water clarity and everything that makes up that area are all important elements. As an example, a pile of 30-40 catfish stacked up on the bottom of a deep hole is easy to see on the screen. “Chad, the hardest part is catching the first one”. Relevant Gear & Tackle: catfish rod and reel combo, circle hooks, carolina rig, big bobber, 50 lb mono for leader How To Catch Flathead Catfish With Live Bait (Bluegill) Live bait is perhaps the most effective and best bait to catch monster flathead catfish on a river. Check them often and make sure they stay sharp. You can test this by scratching the point of the hook on the top of a fingernail. Regardless, no matter what happens, I always make sure we have the best time possible on the water and do everything I can to get on fish! A good idea is stick to a 50-foot perimeter around the outside of the hole. Hold the rod and move quick regardless of what type of catfish rig you’re using. When using treble hooks #8 is often too small, #4 is usually too large and #6 is usually just right. Remember not to focus solely on the cover you can see, but try to identify what might be there that you cannot see as well and start fishing it! âThereâs nothing really mysterious or rare about them on the Alabama River,â Gaston said. If you follow these steps in conjunction with fishing the secret catfish rig you’ll be detecting these bites, landing the fish and catching them every time you move. A seine works too. Get more exclusive catfish fishing tips here by email, make sure to subscribe to my Youtube channel and follow me on Instagram and Twitter. Your email address will not be published. We present the fish in one of two ways: Either rigged live to swim loudly at the surface or rigged as submerged cut bait. How to Catch Winter Catfish Winter vs. Summer. While you very well may catch some larger channel catfish by following these tips, they’re geared towards putting numbers of fish in the boat and doing so quickly! That’s what produces numbers. The retired angler spends his days on the Buffalo River, across the highway from his house. A lot of baitfish get locked up in ice for months during the winter. Once water temperatures consistently dip beneath 60° F, catfish move into the main body of the water and seek out their wintering grounds. Yes, dip bait should work the same. Use your electronics to scan this area for the high presence of fish and bait. This is something I could fill hundreds of pages on. I want 2 of your Cat Rods, wife says I have to wait till Christmas, cant wait!! For channel catfish I prefer treble hooks. The channel catfish has a wider range and is more abundant in Wisconsin than the flathead. Look for water 20+ feet deep surrounded by shallower water. Cut them into steaks ¾ … Channel, blue and flathead catfish are common lake residents, as are their smaller bullhead cousins. My channel to Blue ratio is about 10:1, Your email address will not be published. At times it can take a little bit longer, but not often. Your name and Guide details always comes up around my friends, always always saying you are truely a master at catching and producing for all your clients. You can use your judgment on this one, but I would say if you don’t get any bites within the first 15 minutes, move somewhere else. The term catfish river rigs developed over the years as anglers found different ways to create rigs that always attracted the catfish. Get on the water and start fishing and experiment. On days where air temperature is warmer than water temperature, catfish will move out of the deepest pockets of their watering hole and start searching for food. However, don’t assume they are hibernating. On warmer winter days, fish for catfish in the shallow flats around the deep wintering hole on a river. If you fish for 15 minutes and nothing happens, you need to move, you need to go find the fish. Next time you catch a catfish stick your finger in its mouth and feel around some. Catfish are desperately seeking out the warmest possible water they can find. That being said, don’t get too wrapped up in catfish gear, if you’ve got some rods and reels you can use then just get out there and start fishing. Catfish fishing doesn’t get any easier than this. As a result, big schools of shad can down very deep. Finding the catfish in a pond. The reason behind this is as soon as there is an indication of a bite, I set the hook. Also good are deep structures, like river bends, the base of drop-offs, deep holes, and humps. Find out if catfish are hard to catch and how you can maximize your success. To target bullheads through the ice or from a boat, use a small circle hook with a small piece of cut shad as bait. He uses the Secret Catfish Rig just like I do, but he doesn’t hold the fishing rod in his hand. For more in depth information on choosing a catfish reel check out the Ultimate Guide To Catfish Reels. When fishing shallow edges, use nothing more than a baited hook. Monster catfish, bigger than most of us imagine, are cruising the waters of the Susquehanna River. A simple setup might look like line, sinker, barrel swivel, a few feet of mono leader to your bait, and a tube or worm. Snake River (Catfish, Bass) ... Trout anglers usually troll with spinners or small Rapalas, which will also catch bass. Many anglers also find it relaxing to fish from the shore; they can set up small areas for their equipment and … Winter catfish bites can be extremely delicate. Some of these wintering holes can be man-made. Winter catfish angling can be better than summer fishing if you do it right. Poke around a bit and feel how hard they mouth is inside and out. As long as you have a properly functioning reel and a good drag system, you are good to go. If you came to me tomorrow and said Chad, you can only use one channel catfish bait for now on, pick one, I’d say “punch bait” without hesitation. Sinkers are another key to success. Cutbait is generally from species of local forage, but two of the most popular choices for river catfish are shad and skipjack herring. You’ll save time, effort and trouble this way. The best place to set up for hot water catfish is at chokepoints where you can intercept catfish heading to and from shallow water. The second goes out, finds the fish and puts the bait in front of the fish. If given the option of heading out and fishing open water for channel catfish or heading into or around cover and fishing it, I will always choose to fish cover. Catfish are primarily river residents (though channel catfish also live in lakes and ponds) and are most prevalent in the major river systems of southwestern and western Wisconsin. It’s possible but very unlikely you’ll hook a catfish during the winter on a lure unless it is unseasonably warm out. Many freshwater fish eat small minnows and nightcrawlers, so baiting your hook with these will increase your chances of catching a fish. Now, don’t get me wrong, there are times when other baits will work better in certain situations but nearly 100% of the time I spend targeting channel catfish, I do so with punch baits. I fish with several gentleman that have several of your rods, they are fantastic. The base of drop-offs, deep holes, and minnows die-off narrow points in rivers streams! The long run paper ” mouth of reservoir “ fingers ” tend to have these deeper wintering holes are the... ” tend to have these deeper wintering holes found that most of us imagine, are cruising the waters the. Between blue cats may come completely out of your cat rods, like... Spinners or small Rapalas, which will also catch bass jumping out the. 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