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Flathead catfish - Dont always like to horse em in?

2845 Views 21 Replies 20 Participants Last post by  catmando
I dont always like to horse them in so i usually have one lighter rod out. well i almost landed a 30# er today on 8# mono (didnt have a drop net) and i used to catch channels exclusively with ultra lights until they started breaking them. Anyone else like to sweat it out with a fish that quadrupals your pound test?
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I used to fish with ultralights in the spillway at Carlyle Lake in Illinois. I enjoyed the challenge for awhile, but I was loosing far too many fish. :cursing: So, I started matching my rigs to my quarry. Needless to say, I began landing more fish than were breaking off. :D
I've been trying to catch a fish that quadruple's my pound test but I haven't caught my 320 lber yet, LOL.
It's fun but I do not like to tire a fish that much when I'm just going to let it go. I like to keep them in good health. The best fight I ever had was a 36 1/2" musky on 4 pound test. Now that was a fight.
yes but that is the whole point it is such a challange! They really make you work for it. When you use 100# test that elimates "the big one that got away" stories, and that is what fishing is all about. Or some just call me CRAZY yeah
"crazy catman" thats me, lol!
i hear ya bro,i love fishin y ultralite.Biggest ive caught were some decent carp and im sayin bout a 8 lb channel.Was 4lb till fish kept snappin my line and had 2 buy some 6.i even tok it to a paylake a few times.Hooked a nice one on a gill-head,everytime i got him within about 8ft from the bank he'd just about spool me.I never saw that fish :sad:
Well previous till this year i used medium light equipment. A bass rod i guess you can call it. Then this early spring my favorite broke. It wasnt as i was fighting the fish. It happened as i had it on the bank i was so excited because it was the first big one of the year and i was showing it stupidly to my fishing buddy. As you would guess while i had the fish dangling there on the rod it started to bounce and snapped the rod. I then resorted to fishing with my old 8 foot shimano rod which i think has the best feel of any rod ive used. I then per my fishing buddy advice purchashed two medium heavy type of rods. The point im getting to is a missed using the lighter equipment and purchased a 6'6 shimano stimula rod which i always take with me along with another medium ol whiskers rod.
Well afew years ago I caught a 48lb flathead on 10lb test. It took an hour and half to get in but I got him. It ruined a brandnew $100.00 rod but well worth it. I was fishing froma boat. If I was fishing from shore I would of never got it in. That's not too much fun fighting a fish that long.
I have caught several 10-14 pound channels using 10 pound line on 12' crappie poles while crappie fishing this year. You can't horse right in like I can do with my catfish rigs but if you play them and let them fight the pole for a while with giving them some line when they make a run, it is not too difficult. I have had some big ones break me off though.
When you are fishing heavy structure and mega current, and you hook a 40 or 50lb blue or flat you will be praying your line does not hit a rock or get hung in a tree because your line is to light. Me personally I don't like losing fish just because I want to fight it for 30minutes to an hour. Get the fish int he boat, take a few pics and let him go his merry way.
I caught a 15 pound flathead on 12 pound test line. I used to fish with that light line and I caught alot of cats on it but I lost a big one and I mean big so I stopped doing that.
I think everybody enjoys a good fight...but I dont care who you one enjoys losing a fish right beside the boat they've fought for an hour on light line. I have caught several blues and channel on 8 lb test while whitebass fishing...but have lost more of them than I care to remember. I started using Power Pro 6/20 braid on my whitebassing rig last year...and it still didnt stop me from losing fish due to the hook straightening out. Thats what you get when there are catfish and wiper mixed in with sandbass. To remedy that I started pouring 1/8 oz jigheads with 2/0 Gamakatsu hooks in them and didnt lose a single fish this year. I even managed to get a 38 lb big mouth buffalo in along with a couple blues over 15 lb apiece and several wiper up to 10 lb without a hitch.
I use light tackle when I'm catching channels, but when I'm fishing for flatheads I'm use heavy gear. I use heavy gear for flatheads because I really don't want to lose one, they're hard to come by.
Do what you like. I use heavy line and big strong hooks. I hate the thought of a fish having a hook buried in it then breaking off . That fish will have to swim with that hook takeing the chance of severe infection , sickness and probable death because I didnt use the responsibility to use proper equipment.
I understand the use of light line and tackle, in a open lake with no structure and not worrying about if the fish gets all stressed out and worn down, Stress is the biggest death of fish that there is.

If I am using 40# test line and a #50 leader and a nice reel and heavy rod, then I can have most fish in the 20 # to 30 # mark in the boat less then 5 Minutes. get a photo of him and release him back to the water. The shortest time with the fish is that much more less stress on it.

Using 8# and 12# test line right off the bat, your mind clicks that your using a lot lighter tackle and you take your time playing him, until one thing and only one thing happens, he is so worn out that you reel him in, where he is no longer fighting you and you get him in the boat. Let me first say this fish is stress out as much as he can get now !!
I am not saying all fish die due to Stress fighting them, but I also feel its best to get the fish in, photo it and get it back to the water so you can reduce the stress of this fish some.

Now on the other hand I know its your right, and I am not going to argue with you,
you bought a license the same as I did and you have the right to take fish by any method that is legal. But my choice was to try to keep fish here for my children and theres.

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DH your just sayin that cuz it was the CATS that wore YOU out and YOU could not take the stress of one beatin up on you longer than necessary(saw that in the video)...LOL:p
DH you are right on. Besides if you were to hook a biggun in the swift current of the big rivers here in the US it would take more than 12 lb test just to keep the line from breaking from the current . Then the fish fighting would be on top of that.
My only question, is how do you know it was a 30#er when you didn't land the fish ? :)
excellent post DH !!!!!!!!!! :thumbsup: :thumbsup:
well if anyone finds a 30 pound flathead with a crankbait stuck in his lip i want it back....NOTE to Self. Upgrade bass pole to spiderwire...:crying:
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