Found the fish - too bad I had my bow

Discussion in 'INDIANA RIVERS TALK' started by rairdog, Sep 24, 2007.

  1. rairdog

    rairdog New Member

    Messages:
    177
    State:
    IN
    Well I had pretty much had given up on the catfish for the year. The shad are stacked at the dam and all we are catching are smallies and an ocassional channel. It's been a very slow year compared to the last 3 years. My neighbor and I decided to load our bows and climbers into the canoe and hit some secluded woods/water for some urban deer. On the way there I was amazed at the amount of shad we saw. Schools of 10 to 30 about every 30 to 40 yards. Big ones 6 inches plus and small ones. I was beginning to worry there was a big kill off this year with the low water. Lots of smalleys, carp and suckers too. This really put my mind at ease. Anyway, we climb our trees about 5 pm and had no luck seeing deer. One yotee at 45 yards but moving too fast to get the bow up and ready. At dark we proceeded down the river and it was nuts. Fish jumping and stirring evertime I put the paddle in the water. I just assumed the were carp or suckers. So, we slowed down and got the lights out. Channels were everywhere. They were lined up side by side swimming to stay stationary in the strong current. They were mostly concentrated in the shallow flats where the water was 6 to 12 inches deep from bank to bank and strong current. Or, it could be that they were in the deeper water too, but I just couldn't see them. I assume they were holding tight waiting for shad to float by. Most of them seemed to be in the 5 to 6 lb range but it was hard to get a light on them unless they were 3 to 4 feet from the canoe. Definately saw whiskers. The moon was also very bright. Needless to say my girlfriend wants to camp on the river next weekend and take our waders to check it out after bowhunting. The plan is too cast net a bunch of shad. Then stand down river and cast up with jig heads and let the cut bait float to us. This is pretty much how I fish the river anyway but usually in the deeper holes. I am much more produtive this way for channels than sitting on the bank and using stationary presentations. It's kind of like drifting for walleye or salmon/steelhead. Has anyone else witnessed this? I have caught them in shallow spots immediately downstream of deep holes right at dark and for about the first hour after dark. I just assumed they were moving upsteam to the deeper holes. I wonder if its a fall pattern that I was unaware of. I know they often feed the flats at night but it seems to be more in slack water. Ohh... and we did see 10 deer drinking from the river on the way out. Could have taken any of them if it wasn't dark out. A nice 6 pointer in full velvet that would have looked great on the wall. Let me know your thoughts.
     
  2. fishassasin

    fishassasin New Member

    Messages:
    1,252
    State:
    Evansville, Ind
    where were u and what river were u on... i dont know much about catfishin ...still learning thanks for what info u have given me
     

  3. rairdog

    rairdog New Member

    Messages:
    177
    State:
    IN
    Sent you a pm Dave
     
  4. fishassasin

    fishassasin New Member

    Messages:
    1,252
    State:
    Evansville, Ind
    need a fishin arrow ... and getem that way..
     
  5. Flootie16

    Flootie16 New Member

    Messages:
    1,268
    State:
    Indiana
    So where exactly were you at????
     
  6. rairdog

    rairdog New Member

    Messages:
    177
    State:
    IN
    I floated, camped and hunted last weekend in the same area. We were near 146th St. South of Noblesville. We caught an 8 lb channel and 6 between 3 and 6 lbs. Also caught a bunch of crappie, smallmouth, largemouth and one wiper in the gravel pits. No walleye or sauger yet but it won't be long. This area is all private property mostly owned by Beaver Materials. You're ok as long as you stay in the water and on the sand/gravel bars. There are a lot of ATV riders in the gravel pits but they will fine you if you get caught. The river is way too low for boats, so its only accessible by canoes and waders. It's a good 4 to 5 hour float trip. Add in some fishing time and its gonna be dark by the time you get out. There are plenty of suckers, chubs and shiners above the rapids right now. They average about five inches. Be careful if you are throwing a casting net because the smalleys will mix in with them. It's a bummer when a smalley gets caught by the gills in my net. The shad were concentrated in one area but you have to stand up in the canoe and throw your net as you float by them. I don't recommend it unless you have a good partner who knows how to counterbalance. You can camp on the gravel bars and canoe the slack water above and below the bars. Lots of log jams and shallow rapids. If your going to canoe at night you must know the river and be a very experienced canoer. Didn't see any deer. Need the corn out. Pm me if you want access points, shad hot spots, and contacts for permission.
     
  7. rspd507

    rspd507 New Member

    Messages:
    729
    State:
    Rising Sun,IN
    If i go fishing, i shoulda went hunting and vice versa!!!:smile2:
     
  8. whiteriverbigcats

    whiteriverbigcats New Member

    Messages:
    3,452
    State:
    Indiana
    I have never seen that pattern before... Fall is my best time of year but i stick with the deep holes myself.. But this seems like something to look into.. But it sounds like all in all it was a good time out there on the water