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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone..new to the site..so far a very nice place not too much BS from topic to topic..

A buddy and I have a 4 day weekend this coming weeknd..We're both looking for some new waters to fish..We're both been catfishing for 9 years now..We mainly stay on the Susq for flats and channels..I'm not looking for someones serect spot, just looking to expend our fishing for the weekend...any help would be great..Distance is not a problem as long as it's within PA..rivers or lakes..thanks
 

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Couple places off the tip of my tongue.....

Lake Erie tributaries for some big channels.

Raystown Lake Channel cats and stripers

The 3 rivers in the western part of the state. flatheads and channels

Blue Marsh lake. Channels and present State record flathead waters.

Skuke channels and flatheads.

The susky and it's tributaries sure does have it all, though. good quality channels and flatheads.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
thanks for the info..now to research those areas you guys pointed out..

do you think a boat is needed to fish blue marsh lake? or is there just as good of a chance to fish from shore?

never thought about raystown, heck it's closer to me then the river where i like to fish.lol

how are the water temps on the skuke?
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
thanks for the info guys. We had a buddy give us a last minute call saturday to catch a boat ride..that day produced 10 cats. 1 being a 14lbs flat, and several other nice sized channels...monday we hit the river again, got a phone call at 830 in the morning saying the boat was free again and to come out the fishing is good..buddy had his rob stolen out of the boat from a fish, (bait alert wasn't workin) and then he landed a 13lb channel which broke his net..we played the rain game and lost over all, we boated 3 more fish and the lighting chased us out of the water for the 3rd and final time..
 

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I hate to be the bearer of bad news, and no doubt sounds like a good day fishing, but if a 13lb channel is BREAKING your net... Chances are you are going to need to step up ALL of your gear in order to land a trophy flathead!

May I ask what type of gear you guys are fishing with? I have seen all to many times guys in PA that are "catfishing" with WAYYY to light of equipment. Don't get me wrong, I was at one time in that boat (along with the majority of the others here I am sure),but once I found the BOC and actually started targeting LARGE fish I began to slowly upgrade my gear. I now have at least 6 setups (with a few more in order once the funds come in, although I am also looking for a new boat :wink:) that I know will have no problem landing any flat that PA will throw at 'em.
 

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Our gear used was more than heavy enough.The net was old and used for many years.Not sure of the rod that was pulled over but his other is a e-cat with an abu reel.We all fish with med/heavy with 15-20 lb berkley big game line.All with abu reels and a assortment of rods.
 

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Our gear used was more than heavy enough.The net was old and used for many years.Not sure of the rod that was pulled over but his other is a e-cat with an abu reel.We all fish with med/heavy with 15-20 lb berkley big game line.All with abu reels and a assortment of rods.
Hey man. I am in no way trying to pick an argument, just rather trying to help a brother out! E-Cats are supposedly REALLY nice rods, although I have never seen and/or fished with one. I would have no doubt they would land a nice flat. I also have no doubt any abu 5xxx and up would land a nice flat. I fish with Abu 6xxx series reels and TWC (which are similar to E-Cats in specs) rods, although I fish with a little bit heavier line. I wouldn't throw anything less than 30lb mono, or 65lb braid for cats. Some people here throw like 700lb braid :wink:. 15lb mono would have no problem, IMO, landing a nice flat in open water, but you have to remember that most trophy flats will be caught in structure. That is where the heavy line, rods, and sinkers come into play. Not so much fighting the fish in open water. Talk to Tan, he has gone in the Skuke a few times after fish that have been caught up in close-to-shore tree branches... Last year he posted a XXX rated picture of him wrestling one :wink:. Since I have moved to MD, I have seen many nice 30lb+ rockfish (stripers, to us Pa guys) landed on 15-17lb test, but stripers dont make runs at the local log like a flathead... (follow up on this below)

Like I said, not picking a fight, but rather trying to help out. There are a TON of people in PA that "fish" for flatheads with gear that many here WOULDN'T use as trout gear! You both have a small amount of posts so I am still not sure where you fall in the "catfish spectrum."


*Many guys down here will fish from boat for trophy rocks (stripers) with your everyday bass rod. Yes, there have been MANY trophy rocks landed this year (and weighed at the B&T I work at) and they have been landed on 10-17lb test line with a regular 6' 6" - 7' bass rod. That is because a rockfish fight and a catfish fight are completely different. Rockfish swim and strip drag like no other, but they do NOT run into snags. I will say though, that I feel rockfish will put up pound-for-pound a harder fight than any other fish you will find in North America, except for maybe Cobia. Flatheads run into branches, rocks, undercuts, etc to get away. IME, flats will take MAYBE 30-60yds until they sit. Rockfish will take 100yds+, but they really have no where to "hide". I would never run more than 17lb test on a surf rod (unless I was targeting the carp of the ocean, Drum) or I would EXTREMELY close to a pier... Salt/Bay fishing is completely different than flathead fishing.
 

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Hey man. I am in no way trying to pick an argument, just rather trying to help a brother out! E-Cats are supposedly REALLY nice rods, although I have never seen and/or fished with one. I would have no doubt they would land a nice flat. I also have no doubt any abu 5xxx and up would land a nice flat. I fish with Abu 6xxx series reels and TWC (which are similar to E-Cats in specs) rods, although I fish with a little bit heavier line. I wouldn't throw anything less than 30lb mono, or 65lb braid for cats. Some people here throw like 700lb braid :wink:). 15lb mono would have no problem, IMO, landing a nice flat in open water, but you have to remember that most trophy flats will be caught in structure. That is where the heavy line, rods, and sinkers come into play. Not so much fighting the fish in open water. Talk to Tan, he has gone in the Skuke a few times after fish that have been caught up in close-to-shore tree branches... Last year he posted a XXX rated picture of him wrestling one :wink:

Like I said, not picking a fight, but rather trying to help out. There are a TON of people in PA that "fish" for flatheads with gear that many here WOULDN'T use as trout gear! You both have a small amount of posts so I am still not sure where you fall in the "catfish spectrum."
ya beat me to it Mike. i would for sure not use the 15 pound test line. 20-40 is a better option or like Mike said heavy braid. used 17 pound test line once and it worked for the smaller flats but of course i hooked into a real hog with it and it ended up breaking right as the fish made a big run close to me. was mad at myself for that one for a long time.
 

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I agree with the above...I have found that I loose a LOT less tackle with the heavier line. So many times I wrapped my line around my net handle prepared to break it due to a snag only to actually pull a boulder or log loose and get my hook, etc back intact. Lighter line and I'm out that gear. I use 80lb braid tied to 60lb mono. One benefit is less killed fish IMO, 2 nights ago I thought I had a monster only to finally land an 8lb flat that had wrapped the leader around and embedded it into an 8ft branch. Light line and that fish would've died with a hook in it's mouth and a huge branch stuck to it and I would have thought I lost a 30lb fish. Just my experiences, hope it helps. Good luck out there!
 

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ya beat me to it Mike. i would for sure not use the 15 pound test line. 20-40 is a better option or like Mike said heavy braid. used 17 pound test line once and it worked for the smaller flats but of course i hooked into a real hog with it and it ended up breaking right as the fish made a big run close to me. was mad at myself for that one for a long time.

Ask Justin about the "one that got away" on my boat last year... If he hasn't forgot about that! We had a serious 30+ minute session, I think two 18lb fish, and multiple others. Justing had a big one on my glowstick, but it eventually broke off under the boat somewhere. I had 25lb test (I believe) and it wasn't a nice breakoff. We both would have liked to see that fish... I now wish I had 40lb or more on that rod!!!
 

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Ask Justin about the "one that got away" on my boat last year... If he hasn't forgot about that! We had a serious 30+ minute session, I think two 18lb fish, and multiple others. Justing had a big one on my glowstick, but it eventually broke off under the boat somewhere. I had 25lb test (I believe) and it wasn't a nice breakoff. We both would have liked to see that fish... I now wish I had 40lb or more on that rod!!!
i feel ya on that Mike. i have 30 and 40 pound test on my poles and the same for leaders. i have hooked into some monster fish over the years that even with the heavy gear i use i could do absolutely nothing with and felt under gunned. once you actually hook into one or a few truly big fish your opinion on whats heavy enough or not will change rather quickly.
 

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Were all cool.Not trying to pick anything.Just stating that the rods were more than heave enough and the net was old with many years of use.The only time we break off is when the toothy critters bite.Right now the largest flat caught out of the three of us was 28lb i think.The way we were rigging was not proper for those heavy lines.We would end up pulling the boat off anchor.Working on some breakaway rigs so then we can up the line again
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Our gear is up to snuff..I've been doing the whole cat fishing deal for 9 yrs now..i used to run 25lb GB line..it sucks pullin my buddies boat off the rock ledge we fish cause it can be tough to get bck on it.



I've brought my 3yrs of salmon fishing skills into play when it comes to targeting these flats.. i also know my buddy needs a better anchor.. we've been trying to locate bigger fish but have hit that 30# or less wall... finding time to fish now with younger then boat friendly kids can be tough..so we only get to fish on friday nite and saturday, pending on our work week..

thanks for the concern, and added positive feedback..we just need a fishing vacation to go play in some new waters..
 
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