below the dam help

Discussion in 'ARKANSAS RIVERS TALK' started by tallmanrus, Jan 2, 2009.

  1. tallmanrus

    tallmanrus New Member

    Messages:
    663
    State:
    arkansas
    I wanted to start this thread for my benifit and the benifit to others that might need help . The area that i live in offers some great lock and dam fishing . I live near three dams here on the arkansas rivers , but have yet learned the best way to fish them . rigs ,hook size types and so on . I mainly fish from a boat but do spend some time on the banc . i would also like to learn the best anchor system for below the dams for fishing . I went yesterday with boc member riprap and had some real good conversation . Again i learned from a member some good tips and things i was doing wrong . i cant express how much of a pleasure it is to fish with a boc member and learn some new things , but back to the topic at hand . In the past fishing the dams here i am missing alot of hits and getting no hookups . I was told from some locals yesterday that for this area i was useing to large of a size hook . but in the past i was told i wasnt useing a large enough hook . Another thing i came across yesterday on the river was - when i checked the flow on the river the day befor the trip it was running 22 ,000 . When we got there the next morning it was running 47,000 . How do you adjust to these changes . Do you change your setup and rigging or just stay home . Again back to the locals we met yeserday , don and i couldnt buy a bite but the locals that fished below the dam came in with 6 decent blues . Nothing huge but got fish . When i was talking to them they were looking at my set up and couldnt believer the size of hooks i was useing ( 7/0 kayles) they were useing 1/0 straight eagle claw hooks . The other day i mentioned on here some locals fished at the dam right below the gates and brought in 14 blues with two being better than 15 lbs . Again i fished the same day same water and went home empty . yesterday they were fishing 1-200 yards below the dam and well you know . locals 6 - us nothing . im really wanting to learn the technique of fishing these dams because they offer some fantastic fishing year around . So any tips and techniques would be greatly appreciated . When i have a guest come and fish with me i want to beable to put them on some good catfish - sorry don , im going to get this down for your next trip . So boc members jump in , i want to get your input in fishing below the dams - thanks all --------robert
     
  2. whisker maniac

    whisker maniac New Member

    Messages:
    2,712
    State:
    arkansas
    Some of the best tips I can give you Tall is to keep talking to the locals. Keep needling them for information. Sometimes the locals won't tell you everything the first time or even the second time around. Next fish with several rods with different set ups. When they don't produce change your set ups.. ie; size hooks, style of rigging etc. Also use different baits. giving a choice of baits will sometimes be the key or using the same type of bait but in a different way, ie, whole, cut, or whole with cuts in it so that it lets out scent.



    Hope this might help.
     

  3. whisker maniac

    whisker maniac New Member

    Messages:
    2,712
    State:
    arkansas
    Some of the best tips I can give you Tall is to keep talking to the locals. Keep needling them for information. Sometimes the locals won't tell you everything the first time or even the second time around. Next fish with several rods with different set ups. When they don't produce change your set ups.. ie; size hooks, style of rigging etc. Also use different baits. giving a choice of baits will sometimes be the key or using the same type of bait but in a different way, ie, whole, cut, or whole with cuts in it so that it lets out scent.
    Don't limit yourself anytime you go out to one style of fishing or just one type of bait.
    Also when you are there pay attention to where the locals are fishing and how they have their boat positioned and how and where they are casting to.



    Hope this might help.
     
  4. catfisherman369

    catfisherman369 Floyd

    Messages:
    4,944
    State:
    Nashville Il.
    I agree with Kevin .
     
  5. Bait Boat

    Bait Boat New Member

    Messages:
    1,110
    State:
    Arkansas. Green
    There are a 1000 ways to fish below dams . my favorite is to use my
    remote controll boat to take my bait right in the flood gates
    with a big cork. You can throw in the gates anytime but not with a big cork. but if they have the gates open the slightest you cant run the rc boat. For as anchor I use grab type tied to the bottom with a string to break if they hang up . These anchors work well if you let out enough rope
    on each end and draw to them. I use 8o team catfish hooks they work
    well . skipjack usually catches bigger fish. but not always. hope this helps you out. I usually fish l d 13 fort smith and 12 ozark never been
    to dardenal but would like to.
     
  6. tallmanrus

    tallmanrus New Member

    Messages:
    663
    State:
    arkansas
    kev the main meal for the cats around here is shad. ive talked to many locals and 95 % of them use shad, now some use whole shad ,some use cut, and some use shad heads ,but all the same the main corse on the plater here is shad . Also the locals here ( dam # 4 ) are very good at opening up to tips and such . don and i put one local to the test . awhile back a man here i was talking to told me if i go down river alittle ways and look for the sighn with a rock dyke , go through the little opening in the dyke and fish behind it there is a deep whole that holds good fish . He was right we found it just like he said behind the rock dyke with a 30 ft whole and marking good fish with bait fish . But again we couldnt get a hook up . Something else we came across yesterday was what i think they call a reverse current . We tried to anchor up about 100 ft below the dam and the current kept pulling us into the dam . we had heck staying in one spot to fish . but im going to get this dam thing down (you know what i mean :smile2: ) with yalls help . Thanks for the tip on the anchor regan im starting on two this week ----------------------------------------robert
     
  7. poisonpits

    poisonpits Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Messages:
    9,684
    State:
    arkansas
    Name:
    johnnie
    tall ive never fished number 4 but as far as anchoring i use what i call break away s.i tahe a piece of round tubeing and weld some 3/8ths rebar to it and then if i cant get it lose i just put the motor in gear and the rebar will break off and you good to go.dont know if you have a scour hole below your dam but if you do find where it comes up onto shallow s and fish the edge of the deep water.the fish hole up in the deep water and come up on the shallows to feed.
     
  8. fishstick

    fishstick New Member

    Messages:
    1,885
    State:
    Fouke, Arkansas
    robert, i've got 2 of those revetment dykes here on the red that have breaks in them where the water has washed over and created the breaks. there are deep holes behind these dykes(30 to 40 ft). in the spring(before spawn) when the river is up and water is rushing through these breaks i get on the backside of these dykes and use my trolling motor to ease up to the rock wall beside this swift current coming through and with a carolina rig with a 1/2 oz sinker and 18 inch leader i troll right into this rushing water and as the water is sweeping the boat away i cast my bait back towards the dyke (20 to 30 ft of line out so you dont drag the bottom and get snagged) and use my trolling motor to slow the boat somewhat (this water is really swift and boiling so the trolling motor dosen't slow u down much). the 1/2 oz sinker will not sink too fast in this swift water but since u are traveling with the current the rig will slowly sink under the boat instead of being swept away with the current. i have caught some really big blues in this swift current using this method. after the spawn though these holes behind these dykes don't hold the bigger fish. i think they come into these holes to spawn. i have fished these holes hard using different techniques at other times of the year and only caught a few dinks. i hope this helps.
     
  9. tallmanrus

    tallmanrus New Member

    Messages:
    663
    State:
    arkansas
    thats good to know billy , because you get down to lock and dam # 3 (rising star park ) there are these rock dikes every 3-400 yards . I cant tell you how many . When the gates are open is it better to try to fish the rough water or the outside eddies as johnnie is explaining . We marked i dont know how many holes thursday when we went . There was one right next to the ramp that was , i think around 30 foot with 12 foot all around it . i think im going out soon to just map out some of these holes for future referance .With yalls tips and help im going to beable to put yall on some good fishing this spring
     
  10. fishstick

    fishstick New Member

    Messages:
    1,885
    State:
    Fouke, Arkansas
    robert, what i am calling a revetment wall is like a dike but a dike sticks out in the river at 90 degrees. dikes have deep scour holes at the ends that carry good fish year round. what i'm calling a revetment bank runs in the same direction as the river but usually cuts off part of the river channel going into a bend and has still water on the backside like a small lake. at the end of this revetment bank u can go into the lake part behind it and get completely out of the river and current. sometimes the force of the river going into this bend is too great and washes out a spot in these riprap walls and current goes through during high water feeding this slack water little lake. this, i think, is a spawning hole only and big fish are not here year round. but good in early spring. just my opinion.
     
  11. 4Low

    4Low New Member

    Messages:
    558
    State:
    Lonoke, AR
    Hey Robert-
    Most of my fishing is below dams too. In the winter the cats are a lot harder for me to catch for sure. A couple things I do in the winter is to downsize my hook size from a 6/0 kahle to about a 2 or 3/0. This means my bait size is also much smaller. Another thing I do is to concentrate on the deeper holes and washouts. During cold weather the cats seem to concentrate in the deeper areas.
    The part about the locals doing better; Were you using the same type of bait? If you were using shad and they were using skips, that could be a key difference. Shad work best for me March - May. The rest of the year I use skipjacks.
    As for the river level changing, it can be annoying. The only changes we make involves more/less length on the anchor line and more/less ounces of weight on the poles.
    Good luck!
     
  12. tallmanrus

    tallmanrus New Member

    Messages:
    663
    State:
    arkansas
    Thanks tim , i was waiting on you to jump in on this . I new this was right in your area , fishing below the dams and all . No i was useing the same bait as the locals (shad) but i was also told i was useing to big a hook. and i was trying to fish the rough water up near the dam and they were down a from the dam a ways. We do have alot of deep holes in this area and i just need to concentrate on them for awhile . i also made a new anchor that will grab hold now and an extra lengh of line . thanks for the help ,i need to get down your way and look you up and do some fishing
     
  13. treemydog

    treemydog New Member

    Messages:
    63
    State:
    Conway, Ar
    Hey Robert,

    I don't post here much. Just stop by and read ever once in a while.

    I will share a little of my experience and opinions. Hope this helps.

    If you are using shad for bait, you are on the right track.

    The best fishing this time of year is, in a boat, below the dams. This time of year, the shad are dying off cause they can't take the cold weather. The big catfish like laying up in the gates on the dam waiting for the dead and dying shad to come to them. For example, if the Corps has the first 3 or 4 gates open, and the rest closed, try casting into the closed gates closest to the the running water. Try all of the closed gates in that area.

    In my opinion, this can not be emphasized enough. THE FISH ARE LAYING UP IN THE GATES. YOU MUST BE ABLE TO CAST ALL THE WAY TO THE GATE. IF YOU CAN'T GET YOUR BAIT UP ALL THE WAY NEXT TO THE GATE, YOU WILL NOT GET NEAR AS MANY BITES. THE FISH ARE LAYING UP IN THE GATES.

    If you are 10 yards short of the gate, you might as well be casting the other direction.

    It is not easy to cast the 100 hards to the gates at first. It helps a lot if you know someone who has already mastered this who can teach you.

    I recommend a one piece 13 foot Fenwick rod with a good quality Penn reel.

    You will need at least 5-6 oz of lead to make the cast.

    Just my 2 cents. Hope it helps.
     
  14. tallmanrus

    tallmanrus New Member

    Messages:
    663
    State:
    arkansas
    well im going to put all these good tips to work today ,going to try dam # 4 and the water is only running 15000, i know they are there so lets see if i can get them to bite-----------------------thanks everyone for the great tips------------------------robert