Got too much wood! - Need help fishing for flathead catfish in heavy cover

Discussion in 'Flathead Catfish' started by JAinSC, May 25, 2006.

  1. JAinSC

    JAinSC Active Member

    South Carolina

    Seriously, though:
    I fished the North Santee River thsi past Sunday and was pretty much baffled. The river has too much woody cover! Everypace that looked good, I'd go oever the area with the depth sounder and it would be solid submerged trees. I figured there was no way I'd get my rigs back, much less have any chance of landing a decent flathead. I tried moving out away from the bank, and there would be another submerged tree! and another! There are some sandbars that are clear, but I have a hard time feeling confident fishing on shallow sand when I know there's that much cover around. Usually I like to fish near, but not in cover. Plus, with that much cover - who knows where the fish will be?

    I did find one nice little clear spot in a small channel near a bank. I fished there for about an hour and got a 13 pound flathead and a small bleu that snagged himself in the top of his head while harrassing the live bluegill bait. I'm pretty sure that I would not have been able to land a good fish there, though. If he went any distance in any direction he'd be in the wood. Later on I accidentally cast into a snag. When I wnet to try to recover the rig, there was a fish on it. We played short range tug of war for a bit, but I could feel the line rubbing one the logs for a bit and eventually he won.

    Any suggestions? I could go with a winch loaded with heavy cable. Or I guess maybe I need to go early and spend a lot more time looking and pick out a few spots that might actually be fishable?
  2. bigcatwannabe

    bigcatwannabe New Member

    rowland, nc
    that is tough, maybe you could use a slip bobber to save your rig, but that isnt gonna keep the fish out of the trees huh?, thats a tough one

  3. metalman

    metalman Well-Known Member

    Fish those sand bars at night if you can. No lights, no fires, no noise! The flatheads will come out of that wood to feed after dark. Don't play games with them, use heavy tackle and take charge of them immediately so they can't get back to the snags. Good luck...W
  4. jtrew

    jtrew New Member

    Little Rock, AR
    I heard of a problem similar to that in saltwater. Jetties there are usually made of huge chunks of rock, creating lots of big holes in the jetties where jewfish like to hang out. (jewfish = goliath grouper) Very difficult to pull these large fish out of those rocky holes. The answer was to use a very stiff, very stout Calcutta cane pole and just go eyeball to eyeball with them. No drag. Just your strength against the fish's strength. Horse 'em out or lose 'em. Use heavy enough tackle and you might find that dropping a bait down a hole in a log jam could be very productive. Definitely get the juices flowing, even if you lose a big fish.
  5. s_man

    s_man New Member

    south east ohio
    Man, all I can say is I wish I had that problem up here. I'm sure if you pull a sinker through some spots ( without a hook ) you'll find some place to toss your bait. As for gettin em out you gotta go as heavy as you can.
  6. flathunter

    flathunter New Member

    If I had your problem I would fish the sanbar and hope the flatheads would come there to feed at night.
  7. Kattywumpus

    Kattywumpus New Member

    The problem with fishing close to logjams is that the flatties run for cover which leads to broken and snagged lines. You have to use heavy line and poles to horse those babies out before they bury themselves in the log pile.