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Something I find puzzling about cat fish. You can never catch them under the boat and the only bank to get near is the one across the river from you! Is that right? I have watched a lot of videos and have never seen anyone fishing off the bank cast up or down the bank. always they cast out and not only out, but out as far as they can cast. When I was about three of four I'd go fishing for trout with my step dad and we'd simply drop a baited hook over the side of the boat, we did catch trout! But watch catfish video's and they park the boat then cast the line out as far from the boat as they can! Why don't they ever just drive the boat over there and fish under the boat? I have only bank fished for cat's till now and I notice that in my only place to find them around here, John Day River, I stand on one bank and cast out as far as I can to get near the bank on the other side of the river! Is this a mental thing? I mean do the cat's really care which side of the river they are on? And how about that boat deal, do cat's get lock jaw if there a boat over them?Just wondering!

This is what happens in the winter when I'm not catching fish. To much time to sit around and think!
 

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On the bank where I fish I just barely flip it out 5' so it is basically under my feet and we catch loads of fish that way. While on a pontoon boat we did the same thing barely flipped it out 3' while in the weeds but your right for the most part boat fisherman cast far from them and towards shore while shore fisherman cast as far from shore as they can. Universe is still changing
 

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My guess to both questions; bank fishing and boat fishing, is to get the bait away from all the "catfish senses' stimuli" that scare big cats away.

I fish from an aluminum boat and the waves make a constant "thump thump thump" noise against the hull. I have put rubber mat flooring down but I can still here myself walking around on the boat. I fish alone and try to be quiet, but what about others that fish together and talk while waiting for a bite. Sure if you're in 100' of water it may not be an issue, but what if you're in 10'? What about 20'? I cast the baits as far as I can to get my baits away from the sounds of my boat.

Sight. If I am walking around and creating moving shadows on the water, that may spook an old wise huge catfish. The same holds for people fishing on the bank, especially if your bait is 2' feet from shore in 2' deep water.

Vibrations. If I am walking around on boat, or people are walking around on the shore, catfish can sense those vibrations.

What I am saying is: I cast my baits a long ways from my anchored boat to get my baits away from all sounds, sights, and vibrations coming from me and my boat. I am not saying I could not catch any fish directly under my boat; but I have more confidence in my baits away from all the noise.
 

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Stacee from Indiana
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I know if the bank area has had lots of fishing pressure those places close to the bank have been wiped out of fish. A good long cast where others can't get to will catch more fish. Then I found out a very short cast will also catch fish because people are casting over top the fish in front of them.

In some water the drop offs and deeper water are way out in the middle and the bank areas are very shallow and have no structure. A good long cast will probably be needed.

I've always looked for structure but didn't realize I just needed to look under my feet to find it.
 

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I catch several fish from under the boat. And I also fish a long way from the boat . Same thing fishing from a bank .Some times I stagger lines to make it easier to keep them from tangling together, some close some way out. And another reason for a long cast would be to anchor and make a long cast down and across the current to allow the bait to roll down current and lay against the first raise in the bottom it comes to because a lot of fish travel the contour lines as a guide.
Fishing from the bank I had fish come up in 2 inches of water and roll on their side to eat a bluegill carcass I had filleted out , the bluegill head was on the dry bank. I have had Grennel or Bowfin actually beach themselves to get a bait laying barely in the water.
Main thing is to find the fish then adjust your bait placement to them.
Good Luck and have fun whenever you can.
 
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