Balloon Lines for Catfishing

Discussion in 'Catfishing Library' started by Whistler, Sep 9, 2005.

  1. Whistler

    Whistler Well-Known Member

    Original post made by Justin Cantrell(Justin) on October 2, 2003

    One of my favorite ways to catch catfish is on a balloon line, but I often find alot of catfisherman who don't know what that is, so i'll explain it for them. A balloon line is best explained as a "Jug Line" attached to your fishing pole. Start with tying a large barrel swivel to the end of your main-line, but don't cut the tag end, let it hang down as the leader leaving the other ring of the swivel empty. Attach a balloon to the empty swivel ring, I like to use the tougher punching balloons that kids play with. Now tie a hook to the end of the hanging leader with a couple split shot above it to hold it down, I prefer a 4-5 foot leader! it should look something like the image below, which isn't the best picture but i'm no artist so sorry.
    It is easiest to use off of a dock, but can be used from shore also. Just set it in the water & let the wind and waves carry it out where you want it. I have had balloon out over 200 yards. Its a rush when the balloon is just bobbing around out there and then suddenly shoots off with water shooting over the top. I like to use a 10-12' rod for good long distance hook sets & 50# Power Pro, it has no stretch also helping with a long distance hook set & a big reel like a 6500C3 or 7000C3 cause they hold alot of line. If your going to fish it at night just add a chemical light stick inside the balloon. Oh, and on really windy days you might want to tie a 2oz bank sinker right under the balloon on the leader to keep the balloon from slaming up & down in the water. If you don't want your bait to suspend you can eliminate the swivel & just duct tape the line to the balloon, when you get your bait where you want it, just give it a tug & it will pull free and drop. My dad caught his biggest flathead of 70.7 pounds on a balloon line with a live perch.