Are new tactics needed for this situation?

Discussion in 'All Catfishing' started by SangamonCatKiller, Feb 13, 2006.

  1. SangamonCatKiller

    SangamonCatKiller New Member

    Messages:
    488
    State:
    central illinois
    Hey brothers as some of you may have noticed I recently found some new additions to my fishing territory on the sangamon river. The new area I found is very simalar to the other locations as far as cover, depth goes but, a few things are different.

    For one, thing the water clarity. Most of time I fish west of our spillway where the river is basically fed by lake decatur. The water is murky, brown colored and not very clean... this is where most of my flatheads are caught. In murkey water near jams or flats. This new area is on the other side of the lake before it goes through the dam or any other water ways. The water is absolutely clear!. You can see bottom in all areas that aren't really deep. I am wondering how the big flattys choose there springtime spots and if water clarity will make a difference.


    Another factor is the congregation of logs in the new area compared to my others. The log jams in the new area are one right after another, after another. Compared to the old stuff which has a jam every hundred yards or so. I figure this will spread the fish out more as the food will be more abundant in this area. So do I just look for the nastiest stuff? Or play more to the logs that further spread out in the area?

    Last we be the width of the river. In my old area I would guess that the bank is 30 yards or more across from where I would be fishing, give or take. The new stuff is much thinner across than what I am used to. Although it has areas where it does spread out, most of it is less than 30 yards away. Is this too little of space for them?

    So, in conclusion I would really like to know what most of you would do in this situation. The old spots are proven and catch big flatheads on a regular. The new area is untouched by anyone(as is private prop.) and has yet to produce as we havent fished it. The logs are much more congregated here and the water is about the same depth(only difference would be the depth of the pockets that surround the shallow stuff). Again much clearer water and less width to the river. If anyone would like I can post a few of one area vs. the other.
     
  2. SangamonCatKiller

    SangamonCatKiller New Member

    Messages:
    488
    State:
    central illinois

  3. kscathunter

    kscathunter New Member

    Messages:
    2,367
    State:
    Louisburg,
    Some great looking spots you got there I really like the looks of 1-5 of the first set. The second spot should produce something same river right. I'd probaly stick a line under that branch in the air.
     
  4. flathunter

    flathunter New Member

    Messages:
    5,723
    State:
    Ohio
    I imagine those waters will get murky as spring gets here, I think you will do fine..One of my favorite rivers is very clear in the winter cold water, but gets murky once things begin to warm up.
     
  5. Dreadnaught

    Dreadnaught New Member

    Messages:
    5,444
    State:
    Henderson,Ky
    Myself I would fish it in the same way that you fish the otherone with one exception!!! I would not do much moving around and Make sure that you set up your sitting area as far back as you can to avoid being seen by them. I think they see more movement than anything eslse so above all be still. That is my thinking!
     
  6. Larry

    Larry New Member

    Messages:
    707
    State:
    Minnesota
    check out the log jams while the river is clear. Find the holes and structure and keep notes or mark the areas so you can find them easy when the runoff starts. Track depth if you can.
    Things look alot different when water rises.
    Don't hesitate to try floats once you have a guess on what the depth is.
    Keep us posted.
    thanks.
     
  7. bearcat

    bearcat Member

    Messages:
    925
    State:
    Nokomis, Illinois
    Like JW said be very quite and dont move much. Also which jam is the best. Look for one that is the oldest and with the deepest water. Also if one is on the outside bend it will tend to congragate more fish also. They may all hold fish but the one with the deepest water and the biggest hole will hold the biggest flaties.
     
  8. BIG GEORGE

    BIG GEORGE New Member

    Messages:
    10,362
    State:
    JOISY
    I'd be inclined to work it with a slip float rig. This way ya can stay back of it and not worry about spookin anything. Also a slip float rig gives you control as to where the bait is gonna go and gives you the ability to work the entire jam.
     
  9. SangamonCatKiller

    SangamonCatKiller New Member

    Messages:
    488
    State:
    central illinois
    Thanks guys! I already have my set up for floating figured out for this season and I have plans to use it in this area. There are a few nice dropoffs that would love to have a bluegill hanging over them.
     
  10. s_man

    s_man New Member

    Messages:
    3,012
    State:
    south east ohio
    You can bet that each one of those log jambs will have flatties in them during pre-spawn/spawn. When the water rises in the spring it'll be warner than the main lake, and they will move upstream and stake out a spot. So you'll have to check them all. You might try setting up between the last jamb and the mouth where it pours into the lake, Catching those fish as they begin their search.
     
  11. Catmaster81

    Catmaster81 New Member

    Messages:
    33
    State:
    Illinois
    Nick,

    As you know, I've fished the Sangamon from Monticello to below Springfield. The one thing I know for a fact is that the river is much different above Lake Decatur than below it. The main difference as far as flatties go is CURRENT, CURRENT, CURRENT. As you are aware, when the water is low, the stretch below Decatur is almost a stagnant pool. Flatheads despise current, so they congregate in this stretch of the river. They hang around the wood structure where they can get their fill of the smaller baitfish and carp that inhabit the shallow points in the river. Also, in the stretch below Decatur, there are a half dozen places that I walked across when the river was low last year without wetting my pocket. That is not the case above the lake. There is more water up there. Regardless of what people say about water depth, I'm a firm believer that the big cats hang out near the deepest holes. And the deepest holes in that river are above Decatur and below Springfield. In my brief experience on the Sangamon, I found that it was a lot like a shallower Pecatonica (my home river in northern IL). Murky in times of high water, clearer in times of low or cold water, and chock full of logs. You are correct in your assumption that more logs equals more spread out fish. Above Lake Decatur target outside bends adjacent to sandbars across the river, near log jams, and more importantly look for the sharp current breaks. The fish are actually more concentrated in this stretch, you just have to be able to identify the holes, and look for those honey spots of current seams and eddies. They are there, my friend. Go catch them!

    Anthony a.k.a Catmaster81
     
  12. TA2D

    TA2D New Member

    Messages:
    886
    State:
    Nebraska
    Trial and error may be the way, use what you know and what others have said and keep trying new spots til you find the honey hole! On a side note the upstream part of the river looks really good for other fish besided cats, maybe some smallmouths?

    Aaron

    TA2D