Coralville and Red Rock report

Discussion in 'IOWA LAKES / RESERVOIRS TALK' started by Burwell40, Jul 3, 2006.

  1. Burwell40

    Burwell40 New Member

    Messages:
    247
    State:
    Iowa
    I took a novice with me for a nice outing on Coralville Saturday morning. We caught 11 nice ones before the pleasure boat traffic and slowing bite drove us home. Using cut shad and heads. The seem to be staying in deeper water. When we'd get below 8', we'd start getting fiddler bites, no bigs.

    My two brothers-in-law went to Red Rock and caught 15 channels drifting mostly up by the mile-long bridge. What was interesting was that I called him from Coralville Res and while I was being bounced around by 4 foot wakes from the Coralville cabin cruisers, he had to search to find a boat in sight. I wish I lived closer to Red Rock!

    I'm going to catch some frogs today and our plan is to drag them through the shallows tonight. I'm excited at the prospects and will give a report.

    Mike.
     
  2. oldstylelight

    oldstylelight New Member

    Messages:
    155
    State:
    LeClaire, ia
    burwell., i like reading your reports... any advice on what rig to use for me here on the mississippi.. i want to try drifing some bait along a couple lateral dams and also in the scour holes on the edge of wing dams... dont know the proper setup... do you use only one pole in hand or do you also have another pole on a rod holder? would this work on the mississippi with current?

    i was on the river yesterday and i tried some bluegill heads above the lock and dam. no takers... ended up stinkin for a couple hours and got 15 fish .. all 1-2# cept for one 4-5# fish....
     

  3. Burwell40

    Burwell40 New Member

    Messages:
    247
    State:
    Iowa

    There are others who might be a better resource for drifting the Miss. given that I have never attempted it. Drifting will work with current. Using the trolling motor, I've only had success trolling up-current. There is a method for drifting down-current using a bottom bouncing technique but I have yet to experiment with it. If the wind is right, I believe you could drift across the current (I've heard that mentioned on this board). For dragging baits up-current, I use the same rig as for wind-drifting. 30 lb. braid, barrel swivel, 50 lb leader 24-36" with a line float about 6 inches or so from hook. Circle hook of choice, at least 8/0. Snap a 2 oz. drift sinker to the main line ring on the barrel swivel. You can hang a sinker with about a 4-6 inch drop or you can make your own drift sinker using 8 little 1/4 oz slip sinkers to make a snaky kinda drift sinker. I'll give you the how-to on that if you're interested.

    The idea is to make it easy for the fish to get lunch, but they have to make a choice...eat it now or it disappears. This requires a smooth presentation of the bait. To get a smooth presentation, you can do several things. Let out a lot of line, 125' minimum. This dampens the jerking effect of your pole tip bobbing up and down with boat movement. Always drift out the back or the front of the boat. Watch the difference in your pole tips between drifting out the side vs. drifting out the back and the reason will be apparent. The float on your leader also helps dampen any bait jerking. Braid is an absolute must. Monofiliament is too stretchy. Think of your bait attached to a rubber band. It sits there till the monofilament/rubber band builds up enought tension and then it "snaps" the bait ahead...not smooth at all! So...just think of your bait on the bottom...do what you can to make a smooth pull and not a snap/jerk presentation of your bait.

    The other thing I've learned only recently is that you may need to vary your speed. Obviously, with wind-drifting using a sock, you're somewhat at the mercy of the wind. Trolling on a day with no wind will stink compared to a day with wind mainly because the darn fish just won't bite as well on those beautiful picnic-with-paper-plates days. However, with a trolling motor, you're more in control of your speed and direction. Just last week, I wasn't getting hardly any bites while a friend using the exact same rigs and bait was kicking my arse. He was going faster. I speeded up a little and within 3 minutes, had a fish on. I don't know why...go ask a fish. By my GPS readings, I went from 0.3-0.5 mph to 0.6-0.8 mph. That doesn't seem like much but imagine yourself going 30 mph on the interstate getting passed by someone going 75 mph. That's the difference in bait presentation to the fish. Maybe the fish is just ticked off at "speeding bait", I dunno. Also, you may find that you're going too fast and need to slow down a bit. Perhaps you're drifting through a catfish retirement community where they appreciate things a little slower.

    Lastly, you need a good drift sock. On days when the fishing is the best, if your drift sock doesn't slow you down enough, you are out of control of your situation and often out of fish as well. I ordered a custom drift sock through Steve Brown down at Warsaw, MO. He's a guide who taught me all this stuff. He actually orders them from some gal in South Carolina who hand makes them. I love it. I can drift in a hurricane. Also, I highly recommend booking a trip with Steve via catfishsafari.com. It is well worth every cent you spend. The guy is brilliant and his wife can cook like nobody's business. I learn more about catfishing in a hour with this guy then I could learn in a year on my own.

    So, to sum it up...find a way to make your bait glide smoothly at the speed that makes the catfish want to bite the bait before it gets gone.

    Good luck!

    Mike.
     
  4. oldstylelight

    oldstylelight New Member

    Messages:
    155
    State:
    LeClaire, ia
    thank you mike.. very much appreciated.. I can usually always catch fish. not always big ones.. so i am open minded and can always learn something from guys like you. i will keep you posted as to when i get out to try some things out.. i am in a tournament out of princeton iowa htis saturday.. so not a good day to experiment.. thank you.