Extra info on drifting?

Discussion in 'All Catfishing' started by tbull, Nov 28, 2007.

  1. tbull

    tbull New Member

    Messages:
    3,318
    State:
    SW Ohio
    I have been going through the archives like crazy trying to find a good "how to" on drifting. All the post are full of great information but it is still hard for me to visualize. Does anyone know where to find the best info on how to drift? Is there a video by any chance floating around somewhere? I mean broken down barney style, types of rigs, everything. Any help would be awesome thanks bro's and sis's.
     
  2. AwShucks

    AwShucks New Member

    Messages:
    4,532
    State:
    Guthrie, Oklaho
    Travis, possibly the reason you are having so much difficulty in getting response to your questions about drift fishing is because the answer is.... it all depends. The temperature, bait cycles, the river, your tackle, current speed, depth, where the fish are... all of these determine how you will drift and where you will drift. Now, once you have determined how your gonna catch fish, and have some reasonable success, it don't mean you will catch squat the next time out because of all the conditions and variables, something is gonna change. You have to constantly experiment to find what ingredients it will take to once again put you on the fish. You may go out today with TOM, DICK and HARRY and have them show you how they drift for the cats... but what about tomorrow? If TOM, DICK and HARRY don't change the way they fish, they won't catch any either. Just go out with an open mind. Know conditions are gonna change and you have to also. I don't know of any fisherman (or fisher person, I guess I should say) that catches fish all the time. Even guides, who make their living from this type of fishing, have days they strike out. Just enjoy the outing whether you catch a fish or not. You'll find you will have a whole lot more pleasure.
     

  3. tbull

    tbull New Member

    Messages:
    3,318
    State:
    SW Ohio
    Thank you and I understand, trust me I love every second I spend on the water, its just something new that I want to learn. When we do it we have been dropping lines straight off the back of the boat, letting the bait hit the bottom, and pulling it up off the bottom a couple feet, and trolling down river. But I hear of people casting away from the boat a bit??? Are we drifting right? Or let me correct myself, is that a way to drift at all? Are you supposed to keep changing line depth? Is the bait supposed to drag the bottom or just off the bottom? Just a million questions I know, just curious how other people do it for ideas to come up with a method that works for us ya know?
     
  4. flatheadhunterx

    flatheadhunterx Active Member

    Messages:
    1,374
    State:
    South Carolina
    I usually cast out and let the sinker drag behind the boat. normally I will cast one out and then drop the next one straight down to a determined depth if I see any fish holding in the water column. then cast one and so on. this helps keep things untangled alittle bit. also put a couple straight down on the other side to diff depths till I see what works. sometimes nothing seems to work then anchor up some where and wait.
     
  5. s_man

    s_man New Member

    Messages:
    3,012
    State:
    south east ohio
    I want to say I am not a drift fisherman, but I have been on the lake with guys that are. And I have read about it. The main thing that seems constant about drifting is to stay in contact with the bottom with your sinker. It should touch every couple seconds or so. If you aren't touching bottom then you are float fishing. The boat is taking the place of a bobber. Which isn't a bad thing if the fish you mark are suspended up off the bottom. Fish will rise up to a bait over their heads more readily than they will dive down to take one they see under them. This is why your sinker is touching bottom and your hook is anywhere from 1 to 2 ft above that. Most but not all times catfish are close to the bottom. In a lake that will depend on the thermocline. There is more dissolved oxygen above it than below it. So most fish will go to the depth that it is and congregate on any structure at that depth. Like humps, steep drops, or just depths in the lake that are suitable. You can eliminate lots of water if you can find the thermocline, there just won't be any fish deeper than that. In a river there is no thermocline since the water is constantly moving and mixing. You need to scout and mark fish then try to drift thru and see if they are cats or float thru at the depth you mark them or anchor up and try to get a hit. Every day they will act different, will be in different areas, sometimes will not touch the bait you caught them on the day before. The plan is to know a little about every way to fish, Float rigs,drifting,bottom fishing,live or cut bait etc...So when one style doesn't work you can fall back on another tactic till you catch fish. I know this seems general but its real hard to say just do it this way and forget every other way. It just doesn't work like that. The best way I have found to catch fish is time on the water and experimentation. I refuse to go to the same spot 2 times in a row, even if I catch a BP. I am constantly reading about new ideas or baits or ways to do things, even other species to see if I can adapt what I read over to catfishing lol. Keep going and trying and you will connect.
     
  6. gbigskin

    gbigskin New Member

    Messages:
    54
    State:
    oklahoma
    many ways to drift and rig for difting. a way i like is put a slip float on main line then a 1oz slip sinker. tie to a two way swivel. then put on 5 ft of shock leader and attach to a kale hook. tie on a bobber stopper above the float and adjust the depth so that the sinker is approx. 2 ft above the bottom. the baited hook will be trailing and bouncing along the bottom. cast out from the boat. boat speed is important so if it is too windy you may need a drif sock to slow you down or if there is not enough wind you may need to use a trolling motor to cover the water. if you are on suspended fish just adjust the bobber stopper so the bait will be presented where the fish are presant or just above them. suspended fish do not seem to go down to feed like they go up. this will also work well drifting jugs. try this method. it works for me.
     
  7. ldw45

    ldw45 Member

    Messages:
    487
    State:
    Illinois
    I have been going through the archives like crazy trying to find a good "how to" on drifting. All the post are full of great information but it is still hard for me to visualize. Does anyone know where to find the best info on how to drift? Is there a video by any chance floating around somewhere? I mean broken down barney style, types of rigs, everything. Any help would be awesome thanks bro's and sis's.


    Travis,

    About 95% of my fishing is using the drift method. The average size of my catch is 4-5# which is good eater size and I use a #3 or 4 circle hook. My best bait is uncooked shrimp that have been heavily sprinkled with garlic salt and allowed to sit a day or so. the rigging is 1/2 oz. of weight with two hooks snelled above it, one at about 4" and the other at 6-8". Two rods work best for me with one thrown out and the other closer to keep tangles from occuring. 6 mph. wind works great. If the wind is more, I use a 5 gallon bucked to slow the drift, if needed an additional bucket can be put at the front. The boat will pretty much stay sideways with the wind.

    I consistently catch fish using this method. The location that was successful yesterday will not necessarily be successful today. I change locations until I've found the fish which may depend on numerous factors such as depth etc. Once I've found them I drift the spot repeatedly until the bite ceases.
    Hope this is successful.
     
  8. tbull

    tbull New Member

    Messages:
    3,318
    State:
    SW Ohio
    Awesome guys I really appreciate it, keep it coming. :big_smile:
     
  9. ShilohRed

    ShilohRed New Member

    Messages:
    4,339
    State:
    West Tn
    To start with how and what type of water do you plan on drift fishing on?
    As current and other stuff makes a difference.
    Pete
     
  10. tbull

    tbull New Member

    Messages:
    3,318
    State:
    SW Ohio
    Be on the Ohio river, there hasn't been much current due lack of rain
     
  11. yeppa

    yeppa New Member

    Messages:
    636
    State:
    Topeka, Kansas
    Keep an eye on your depthfinder, or toss out a marker when you hook a fish. There is a good chance that there is something different about the bottom that attracted that fish. If one cat liked it, so could others.
     
  12. ShilohRed

    ShilohRed New Member

    Messages:
    4,339
    State:
    West Tn
    I use the trolling motor in current and without current. To control the boat. I only fish with one rod most of the time. but If I have more out I just drop the baits down where there not hitting bottom. and put them in a rod holder.
    Here is a link to more info.
    Pete
    http://www.isuzupup.com/download/file.php?id=370&mode=view
     
  13. justwannano

    justwannano Active Member

    Messages:
    1,003
    State:
    SE Iowa
    Now thats some link.
    Although an Isusu top on my jon might just work.
     
  14. catfishscotty

    catfishscotty Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,388
    State:
    mo
    hi travis sounds like u are fishing a river with current i fish below truman dam when they are running water and drifting is the most productive way to fish . ok tie a sinker on first from 2 ounces to 8 ounces then go up ur line about 15 inches tie on a swivel and then make a leader around 10 to 15 inches and tie a hook on. now back to the sinker size u will fish this straight down u need to use enough sinker to keep the line straight down this depends on how much current ur fishing in faster the current more weight u will need. ok when u get ready to fish just dont stop the boat make sure ur boat has settled before u drop ur line down kick it in revers or foward to make the boat nice and even with the current. let ur line down fast as soon as it hits bottom thats good now lift the pole a few inches just dont let the sinker drag on the bottom again u must keep the line straight down as u drift along every couple of seconds let ur pole down and see if u feel the sinker tap the bottom u may have to let line out or reel some up the idea is to keep it just a few inches off the whole drift. dont use circle hooks u will need to jerk when u feel the bite so use kahle or j hooks . now be safe doing this pay attention whats comming up down stream u may have to dodge boats , barges, the bank ect the best is to have ur trolling motor allready in or stay close to ur starting motor. i love fishing this way because u take the bait to the fish and ur fishing different depths as u float along wont take long and u will figure out where they are in the river. u might float along for miles or find a hot hole and go threw it several times. if u see ur line at a angle or feel the sinker dragging i learned it wont be long and u will be hung up. i also drift in truman lake where there is no current just huge open water this type of drifting is very different set up. im not going to explain this to u now it will just get u confused send me a message and maybe we talk on phone if u need more help.
     
  15. tbull

    tbull New Member

    Messages:
    3,318
    State:
    SW Ohio
    That is exactly what I was looking for, broken down nice and simple. Thanks for the info to you and everyone else. If I get to confused trying it out I will definatley let you know. Again I appreciate all the help!:big_smile:
     
  16. Big Sam

    Big Sam Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,344
    State:
    Booneville AR
    Name:
    Sam
    T-bull there is an article in this months issue of catfishgold magazine about drifting with instructions and rigging pictures. I think you can view the article on line (not sure) www.catfishgold.com
     
  17. tbull

    tbull New Member

    Messages:
    3,318
    State:
    SW Ohio
    Thanks Big Same i'll try and check that out. Clicked on the link but couldn't find the article, I will keep trying...
     
  18. catfishscotty

    catfishscotty Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,388
    State:
    mo
    your welcome travis its one fun way to fish because u can feel them bite . now if the current is slow and u have rod holders on your boat u can put out a few rods just keep an eye on them and keep them from draging bottom but if the current is fast i would just go with 1 rod in ur hand for saftey. o ya keep the net close to you u gonna need it :wink:
     
  19. gilmafam

    gilmafam Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    5,466
    State:
    California
    Travis, an additional note to drifting, when I do a drift on rivers I use an anchor rope with some chain attached at the bottom....The chain is 3/8" in size and about 5 ft long.... I attach several of three to my rope if needed, not to extend the length of the chains, rather to add weight at the first connection.... I play out the line to slow the boat down.... if I need to be slower, I add more chain...... I have several loops on the rope to tie off as needed to slow the boat, or to accomodate for various depth change....If I need to stop to fight a fish, I let the rope out to the "stop loop" which may be 20 more feet of rope.....the idea being that the chain will not hang on the bottom, and will just slow the drift....with the chain at a "Bunch" I can pull up on the rope with the chain attached, and with it hanging over the front of the boat, I can motor to a new spot and start the drift again.... I do not have to get off my "butt" to do this as I have "quick release cleat" for adjusting the lengh of the rope..

    I can use two poles with this method.... one that I tend by "bottom bouncing", and the other is out with a "bobber stop" for the desired depth...

    Needless to say, monitoring the depth finder is helpfull.

    Oh, by the way, It is not good to do this in streams where spawing is taking place as the chain may drag through a nest or two...

    bayrunner ray
     
  20. john catfish young

    john catfish young New Member

    Messages:
    3,070
    State:
    Kentucky
    We always drifted just with the current of the river. Drifting over rocky shores and around bluffs in really deep water. We would have poles off each side of the boat. With at least 2 poles bouncing the bottom. The other poles set at slightly shallower depths. Catfish do sometimes suspend off the bottom. Especially around bluffs with rock ledges and structure. If you know of a similiar spot, give it a try. You can always adjust as needed. Good luck!