How long to let them run?

Discussion in 'All Catfishing' started by ryang, Jun 26, 2006.

  1. ryang

    ryang Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    5,289
    State:
    Blacklick, Ohio
    Name:
    Gary
    Ok I have a question here for all of you. Where I fish at it wouldnt be uncommen to get ahold of a decent size fish (bigger than 10lbs). Although I usually just fish for whatever bites (using Gill both live and cut) but I still only get something that is about 4-6lbs. I have read about the clickers going off and letting them run and what not but is there really a difference in how they bite? The reason Im asking is when I do get a bite Ill hear my clicker going off for about a second or so, I usually engage the reel turn the clicker off and just feel with my fingers for the long steady pull then give a good yank and hopefully I have one on there (it works for me LOL). However with the bigger cats are they different with their bite as will they stay on the line with the reel engaged and me feeling with my fingers or do they need that "freespool"?
     
  2. wolfman

    wolfman Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    9,081
    State:
    Triadelphia, WV
    Name:
    Walter Flack
    I prefer to free spool when targeting flatheads. Most of the flats that I catch in the 10-20 pound range will usually make 2 to 3 strikes before actually running with the bait. Ive tried tightlining in the past but had too many fish come off from not being hooked good. The few times that I did catch'em when tightlining it was a channel cat. I use the wide gap circle hooks and let them run.
     

  3. CBH

    CBH New Member

    Messages:
    263
    State:
    WV
    When I hear a clicker going off, I like to pick up the rod, point it at the fish, turn the clicker off, (less resistance felt by the fish), lightly thumb the spool, and when I'm certain that there's a fish on the other end, I'll engage the spool and set the hook.
    Some fish will never stop running once they pick up a bait, but most will pause then run again. My biggest flathead picked up the bait (cut gill) and moved with it just enough to make the reel click about 6 or 8 times before stopping, then it would do it again, then again. Finally I set the hook, thinking it was just a small fish messing with my bait. Turned out to be my biggest cat ever!
     
  4. ryang

    ryang Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    5,289
    State:
    Blacklick, Ohio
    Name:
    Gary
    Thanks for the replies keep em comming
     
  5. Taliesin

    Taliesin New Member

    Messages:
    680
    State:
    Missouri
    I use the baitclicker for one reason...
    It seems the fish around here will just plain stop in the middle of a bite if they feel a rod on the other end. They will take the weight and haul it around with them, but once they feel a rod, they quit.

    It's because of this that I am wondering about the use of a baitclicker on most of the baitcasting reels as they seem to take a little effort to pull out and this may be just a little too much for our local cats. I have the Shimano Baitrunner (spinning reel) and it's baitclicker is adjustable. I usually set it as light as I can get away with so the fish won't feel much.

    To fully answer the question though, I set the hook as soon as I can get to the pole and the fish is running. If I tightlined, they would quit before I could even move.
     
  6. Arkansascatman777

    Arkansascatman777 New Member

    Messages:
    7,782
    State:
    AR
    If Im using a normal size bait with a 7/0 kahle as soon as I can get to the reel I will set the hook. But if Im using a big piece of cut bait, A big head or a live perch with a 10/0 kahle I will purposely take a little longer to get to the rod pick it up thumb the spool and let the fish load up on the rod before setting the hook. My hookup ratio is pretty good and this method seems to work for me.
     
  7. plainsman

    plainsman New Member Supporting Member

    Messages:
    7,187
    State:
    minnesota
    i was told that they will pick it up and run with it, then stop, then when they run again, set the hook, i once had one hit my bait, then go until i was out of line, over 100 yds, and when i set the hook it pulled it out, and he was gone
     
  8. FREESPOOL

    FREESPOOL New Member

    Messages:
    1,234
    State:
    Edwardsville, Illinois
    I've just been turning the clicker on, and loosening the drag with the spool engaged. When I get a fish on, it just starts stripping drag and the clicker screams. It sounds like a lot of you guys are leaving the spool unengaged? And when the fish runs with it you then engage the spool? Do you do this same technique with circle hooks? Are you fishing a decent current?
     
  9. tbull

    tbull New Member

    Messages:
    3,318
    State:
    SW Ohio
    When we fish the Ohio for Blues, usually when you get one over 20 your clicker starts to scream like its hooked to the back of a corvette, big flatheads are kind of different, more of a pull and stop, pull and stop, sometimes atleast. I use circles on the river, usually when the blues are running with it I just pick it up, stop the spool with my thumb and by that time the rod is trying to exit my hand, raise the tip slowly and she is ready to go. Flat heads I kind of approach the same way. I do notice it takes a little longer to hook up with the flat heads. I usually dont let either fish run very long, may not be right, its just the way I do it and have had success.
     
  10. BassMassey

    BassMassey Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,883
    State:
    Oconee
    i've experienced a difference in the way blue's run compared to flatheads. blues to me seem to run kinda fast and sketchy, with the clicker going off in fast hard burst. Flatheads to me run fast too sometimes but it's always a steady click, and they won't usually stop unless they feel something wrong. I know what you're talking about with the shimano baitrunner, if there isn't much current and my bait isn't too lively i set the drag on the clicker so the fish feels zero resistance. I've had some really hard runs fishing that reel like that.
     
  11. CJ21

    CJ21 New Member

    Messages:
    4,303
    State:
    Montgomery, Alabama
    I will set the hook time the cat hit if I am bottom fishing, or if I am using a float I let the fish sink the float and then set the hook.
     
  12. tspergin

    tspergin New Member

    Messages:
    867
    State:
    newark ohio
    when using circle hooks,I wait untill the rod is fully loaded before picking it up and J style hooks I pick up the rod and wait untill it is pulling steady before setting the hook
     
  13. Pfunk

    Pfunk New Member

    Messages:
    141
    State:
    Lake Fork - Texas
    I dont use the clicker or free spool method that you all speak of. I think its because i mainly fish lakes, but i may have to give it a try.

    Most the time when i get something over 5 lb's, they will just about pull my pole in the water. No hits, bumps, or clicks. They will just grab it and go. Kinda like snagging a boat passing by lol...

    As a matter of fact, i try and set the hook right away. If i let them run with it too long, the bigger ones (the ones i usualy release) will straight up swallow the hook along with the bait.
     
  14. dab_602000

    dab_602000 New Member

    Messages:
    81
    State:
    Ft. Worth Texas
    For me I use a cirle hook with cut gills. When I see that I am getting a bite I dont really set the hook I just start reeling in the cat.If I set the hook with a hard yank the hook comes out. The circle hook is designed to catch the corner of the fishes mouth. Just see that you are getting a bite and start reeling it in. The hook sets itself. That is just my opinion.Everyone has their own way of fishing. But it is all good.As long as I am out there fishing . It is better then being at work.:big_smile:
     
  15. s_man

    s_man New Member

    Messages:
    3,012
    State:
    south east ohio
    As long as people keep asking, I'm gonna keep tellin. I have found that with the flats and channels on the river I fish, I cannot let them run. When the pole starts to bend, or I hear the clicker. I engage the reel and hold on till the fish moves off far enough to double over my rod. Then I stick him for all I'm worth. Thats a flathead bite. For channels they will come up and hit you hard, then stop, hit you hard, then stop. Sometimes I have caught 10lb fish when they were doing this. You have to hold your rod and "feel" the bites or pressure that channel is putting on your rod. Then when it "feels" like he is pulling hard, you set the hook. Yes you will miss some fish, but after awhile you'll start hooking some. Once you start hooking them you have it made. I can't explain it but when it happens to you you'll know. Its just a little experience, and trial and error.
     
  16. CJ21

    CJ21 New Member

    Messages:
    4,303
    State:
    Montgomery, Alabama
    I've agree with Skip, I have notice that channels hit you pole hard and then leave it alone.
     
  17. shadguts

    shadguts New Member

    Messages:
    564
    State:
    Tennessee
    The only reason I use the clickers is when I have several rods out and cant watch them all. I am a fan of kahles and I just let them load the rod good so theres no doubt that its taken the bait and give a small hookset. I use braided line and it doesn't take much to set the hook. Before I got a boat and rod holders I would turn the clickers on and disengage the spool so I wouldn't loose my rod. As soon as I heard the clicker I engaged the spool and waited.