James River Question

Discussion in 'VIRGINIA RIVERS TALK' started by TheGrizz18, Feb 24, 2009.

  1. TheGrizz18

    TheGrizz18 New Member

    Messages:
    15
    State:
    North Carolina
    Hey guys I hope everyones catching big cats at the james. I have a question and you guys dont have to give specific locations but I have fished the james several times and have yet to get on the big cats. I'm using the right rigs and the right bait but i'm having problems locating the fish. I fish where the barge sank a few weeks ago and was wondering if I should go farther up river where it is not as wide? I'm having trouble finding good structure at the location I'm fishing now. What do you guys think? I was there this past weekend and fished 20' of water and nothing so we went to 30' of water and finally caught a few fish but they were in the 6 to 10 lb range. I'm not quite sure what i'm doing wrong but if possible I would love to figure this out. It is absolutly driving me crazy lol. It's all I can think about. If any of you guys would rather pm me then that would be great. I'm not looking for any GPS coordinates lol just some friendly help from some local guys. Thanks guys and tight lines to all.
     
  2. Bomberman

    Bomberman New Member

    Messages:
    703
    State:
    Spring Run, PA
    About the best advice I can give is to "think like a Bass fisherman." Try fishing any kind of structure that gives a current break and don't make the mistake of thinking that only deep water holds the monsters. They can be surprisingly shallow at times...esp. this time of year. Good luck and stay with it...you'll connect.
     

  3. Dallison

    Dallison Member

    Messages:
    450
    State:
    Virginia
    Up toward Dutch Gap or the 295 Varina Enon Bridge area....I hope this helps. I don't have any honey holes....
    sorry
    good luck
     
  4. bluecat69

    bluecat69 New Member

    Messages:
    293
    State:
    Tupelo, MS
    I will say this, I went out Saturday and Sunday. We caught anything from 10 lbers to 62 lbers. The water we fished that we caught fish was from 2 foot (caught a 23 and 36 lber) to 12 foot (where we caught the 62 lber). It was all around structure using big shad for bait.
    I know this is kind of vague in location but it gives you some ideal to where the fish was biting.
     
  5. TheGrizz18

    TheGrizz18 New Member

    Messages:
    15
    State:
    North Carolina
    Thanks for all the help guys. It seems that this time of year its doesn't really matter what depth your fishing as long as your fishing structure. That is easy enough but my other problem is that I have a garmin gpsmap 489. It is what I thought a great fish finder being in color and made by garmin but it just seems like it doesn't have much bottom detail. I guess I will need to get a lowrance. I think i'm going back out there this weekend and i'm not really gonna focus to much on water depth but mostly on finding good big structure. I use a slip rig with an 8oz weight, 6 to 8 Circle hooks and fresh cut shad caught that day. Is this kind of a similar setup that you guys use? I will keep you guys updated and thanks for the locations and the help. I am hoping to get in the 50 lbs club right now lol. Maybe one day
     
  6. Bomberman

    Bomberman New Member

    Messages:
    703
    State:
    Spring Run, PA
    Try using the zoom feature on your Garmin to zoom in on the bottom and lower the sensitivity a little until your screen becomes really cluttered...then adjust up to clear up most of the clutter. That should give you good detail for the bottom.

    Fresh bait is great and your setup sounds about right. Do not put your bait in direct contact with ice...the chlorine in the ice will transfer to the bait and the cats can smell it. Use a large chunk a bait...about the size of your hand. Big fish like a big meal.

    One thing to consider is where you store your rods. Make sure you keep them in an area that is free of gasoline or other strong odors. You line can pick up those odors and put it right where a big cat can smell it and turn away. Make sure your hands and cutting board and knife are all free of any foreign scent.

    Just like hunting big game, you need to respect the nose of the quarry you're after. Big fish get that way by being wary. Take a few precautions and you'll be rewarded.

    Good luck.
     
  7. TheGrizz18

    TheGrizz18 New Member

    Messages:
    15
    State:
    North Carolina
    Thanks for all of those tips. Every bit of advice I can get helps and I take all those things into consideration. My main problem really is trying to ready my fishfinder. I actually have a bottom lock feature on my unit that I can set to ready from the bottom to whatever depth above that for instance I can set it to read only the bottom to 10' above the bottom. I have been told that way you will have more detail but I dont know if that is true. I have ready that you need to take it off of automatic depth and put it on manual around the depths that your running in so I would think that If I was only reading the bottom 10' then that would have the most detail right? Again guys thanks for all the great information.
     
  8. Bomberman

    Bomberman New Member

    Messages:
    703
    State:
    Spring Run, PA
    That is correct...by focusing in on the bottom 10 ft you dedicate mor pixels to that area and hence, get more detail. Adjusting the sensitivity also clears up that area so you can see fish easier without blocking any of those echos. It's kind of like fine tuning a radio so you get the best reception...find that sweet spot and everything becomes clearer.

    Tight lines.