Mississippi River around St. Louis

Discussion in 'MISSOURI RIVERS TALK' started by TN Greg, Apr 9, 2007.

  1. TN Greg

    TN Greg Member

    Messages:
    627
    State:
    MO
    For what it's worth, I did load up the boat and head to Mississippi river on Friday. After watching the Big Cat Safari dvd the night before, I was fired up. First I went to Columbia Bottoms, but was apprehensive about putting in. I was by myself and wasn't comfortable with the high water. I haven't been on the river when it's running this high and was a bit concerned that I didn't remember where all the dikes where. I assume this is a major problem when the river is just about 6 inches above the dikes????? They probably wouldn't have come into play, but I wasn't going to risk it. Then, I went to Melvin Price thinking I didn't have far to run to get a line wet. A few gentlemen were snagging Asian carp every cast and I saw one boat launched, but the wind was really whipping it. In the end, I wussed out and opted to watch the Masters instead -- probably missing out on the Blue of a lifetime, but I stayed warm and the prop is intact.
     
  2. RIVER-RAT

    RIVER-RAT New Member

    Messages:
    3,128
    State:
    MO / MT
    I thought about going out there also, however with the river that high I have never had much luck catching a thing! When the water is that high, it's usually full of debris and crap and frankly IMO, I would much rather wait till it drops...bottom line, don't sell yourself short, I'm in the same boat as you!:lol:

    That's funny, I have that dvd also and you're absolutely right, after you watch it you get all pumped up and ready to fish!
     

  3. theonecatfishbob

    theonecatfishbob New Member

    Messages:
    4,100
    State:
    Wright City, Missouri
    When the river is over the dikes you have to read the day marker sign up on the bank. You just line up on them and run straight to them. The red ones will be on the left bank and green ones on the right. They are located on the side of the river the channel is on. As for catching fish in high water, I will share some info on that after the fishoff. Maybe.
     
  4. Cuz

    Cuz New Member

    Messages:
    7,241
    State:
    DeSoto, MO
    Actually, it gets alot easier to visualize where the dykes are when the river gets close to the dyke tops. You will notice the water disturbances downstream of the submerged dykes. Once you run the river alot you will learn to read the water and know where the gotchas are. I'd say you made a stand up decision by erring on the side of safety. Nice Decision Greg. Take a buddy along next time. 4 eyes is better than two, and makes for some nice conversation. You can run the rivers when they are up like this safely, you just need to use caution. There is usually alot of debris just itchin for a prop. I regularly run the river even when there is alot of debris floating everywhere. I just slow down quite a bit, and exercise a very sharp lookout for any large chunks of wood or debris. Again, nice decision.
     
  5. TeamWhiskers

    TeamWhiskers New Member

    Messages:
    536
    State:
    Missouri
    Greg.. Get the river maps so you know exactly where they are. You can download both the MO, IL, MS and Ohio river in pdf format then just print them off and take them with you.
     
  6. Mr.T

    Mr.T Active Member

    Messages:
    2,554
    State:
    MO
    Great advice.

    If you're going to play on the big rivers, you need to learn how to read and follow the channel markers. As long as you stay in the channel, you won't hit anything.

    Here's a link to a PDF from the Corps of Engineers with information about the marker buoys, etc. - it's a huge file so wait for it...
    http://www.nwk.usace.army.mil/RiverCharts/KC_C.pdf
     
  7. TeamWhiskers

    TeamWhiskers New Member

    Messages:
    536
    State:
    Missouri
    Thanks T. I forgot where they all were. Ive got them all on a disk instead.
     
  8. turtle1173

    turtle1173 Member

    Messages:
    613
    State:
    Mayfield, KY
    It is definitely better to err on the side of caution if there's any doubts. I've loaded up and turned around several times after getting to the river.

    This past weekend wasn't one of them though. I was dumb enough to get out there and managed only a 10 lb drum for my trouble.

    In my area, when the water is this high, I don't even worry about hitting a dike. They are all 15 feet underwater. It's easy to tell where they are by that boiling water at the surface. The farther underwater the dike is, the farther downstream that boil will be from the actual dike.

    If I ever have any doubts whether a dike is far enough below the surface of the water for me to pass over, I'll motor around the dike in the channel. If I'm wanting to anchor on top of a dike that's questionable, I'll be upstream from the tip of the dike. Then I make sure I put my motor in neutral and I'll drift over the tip watching my finder. If there's plenty of clearance, I'll try it again closer in. Probably twice that I can recall, my skeg has skimmed a rock on the top of the dike.

    That's just what I do if I'm looking to fish on a submerged dike that's questionable. I've erred on the side of caution many times with this and picked a different dike or anchoring location. If I'm just motoring upstream past dikes when the water is lower, I'll stick with the channel.
     
  9. Mr.T

    Mr.T Active Member

    Messages:
    2,554
    State:
    MO
  10. TN Greg

    TN Greg Member

    Messages:
    627
    State:
    MO
    Thanks for all the useful posts, gentlemen. I have got to get in the boat with one of you experts sooner than later to get these tidbits first hand. I'm ready to make the complete transition to blue cats in a big way this year; albeit I'm off to the famed Dale Hollow to hit what I hope to be a nice smallmouth crankbait bite this weekend...........I can't let it go just yet. With that said, I'll be thinking about what good bait those smallies might make on the Mississippi......hehehe. I must admit nothing quite compares to a solid blue cat pull down with a mega chunk of meat on the hook.
     
  11. Cuz

    Cuz New Member

    Messages:
    7,241
    State:
    DeSoto, MO
    Good Luck on Dale Hollow. Your welcome to go out with me anytime. I live down in Festus, Missouri but will pull my rig up to Alton sometime.
     
  12. TeamWhiskers

    TeamWhiskers New Member

    Messages:
    536
    State:
    Missouri
    There is nothing like catching a trophy catfish. The size of what makes a trophy is in your own mind and the eyes of the beholder. This is one of the reasons why Catfishing is a Sport for all of us to enjoy. The thrill of catching one will always keep you going back as you will be soon hooked as the memories will last a life time....

    Vince Copple
    TeamWhiskers
     
  13. RIVER-RAT

    RIVER-RAT New Member

    Messages:
    3,128
    State:
    MO / MT
    I couldn't agree more with what Vince said...that's how I became addicted. I grew up in Montana and had only experienced flyfishing...until I met a freind thgt took me out on the mississippi in '02...I hooked into a couple of those blues and...well...the beginning of the end! I now have spent thousands of dollars in an attempt to catch a new personal best...and I have 0 regrets! I absolutely love the sport and it consumes my thoughts throughout the day!:big_smile:
     
  14. ravenloft420

    ravenloft420 New Member

    Messages:
    346
    State:
    mo
    thats wierd I went there sunday and it was pretty low. was the damn closed when you were there?
     
  15. TN Greg

    TN Greg Member

    Messages:
    627
    State:
    MO
    I think all the gates were open.
     
  16. Bluerider

    Bluerider New Member

    Messages:
    23
    State:
    Bethalto, IL
    Gates were full open at Melvin Price today, water is very high and full of debris below the dam.

    No skippies yet either :crazy: