New to flathead catfishing

Discussion in 'LOCAL PENNSYLVANIA TALK' started by dirt138, Aug 7, 2007.

  1. dirt138

    dirt138 New Member

    Messages:
    126
    State:
    Springdale, Pennsylvania
    Okay guys heres the story... I have been an avid catfisherman as long as I have been able to fish. I am out fishing at least 3 nights a week year round and lately it has been more. I have always targeted Channel cats but have caught some very small flatheads on worms in the past. Until I stumbled across this place I had no idea the size of the flatheads that could be found in the allegheny.

    So heres my plan: My wife is taking her and the baby out of town thursday and not coming back till Sunday. I intend to run up to the lake and catch a whole mess of bluegill ASAP and head to the river. Now come rain, sleet, snow, WW3 I am not leaving till I catch me a nice flathead. Here is my problem. I know where to fish for channel cats. Are flat heads found in the same spots? Depth? Current? Any help you guys could give me on this would be great!! If it helps at all I will be fishing the allegheny between tarentum and harmorville. I am assuming that I need to do somthing diferently because I often use cut gils for channel and have never got a big flatty. Thanks alot guys!!! Wooo hooo 4 days no wife kid or work!!!!! I'm sooo going to fall asleep fishin!!
     
  2. tbartek

    tbartek New Member Supporting Member

    Messages:
    742
    State:
    New Germany, PA
    Rodger, welcome to the BOC:0a25:I've never fished there but pacatchaser has pulled some flattys out at lock #3 which is right in your neighborhood. You want to get as close to the lock as you can. Flats seem to like the slower water. Put them live gills out long enough and you'll pull some in. Good luck!
     

  3. dirt138

    dirt138 New Member

    Messages:
    126
    State:
    Springdale, Pennsylvania
    maybe that's my problem. I fish from the shore and on the oposite side as the lock. There is an island I can get to. Maybe I will head out to that and see what I can do from there with my long rods.
     
  4. Pennsylvaniacatchaser

    Pennsylvaniacatchaser Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    11,341
    State:
    Sarver, Pa
    Rodger - Flatheads seem to prefer live bait over cut bait. I have caught Flattys on cut bait but usually they are smaller ones. Get a bunch of Bluegill, Crappie, Perch, White Bass, Bullheads, etc. whatever you can get your hands on fish them live. You need to use big hooks to match the size of bait your using. A good rule of thumb for example is if you have a 7" bait then use a 7/0 hook. A 10" bait use a 10/0 hook, etc. I like the Eagle Claw King Kahles. I also use circle hooks but they are sized differently. You would need like a 10/0 circle hook for a 7" bait. Lock #3 is a good spot, I usually fish on those steep rocks on the Harmar side above the sunken barge. There is a bunch of those Shad hanging around down there lately which I think has made the Flat bite tough. They are feeding on those things, easy pickings! I always thought it would be cool to get out on those islands and give it a try. Just be patient, check your bait on occasion, replace it if it dies and set the hook hard! Good luck to you! :big_smile:
     
  5. dirt138

    dirt138 New Member

    Messages:
    126
    State:
    Springdale, Pennsylvania
    Hey thanks for the advice!! I spend a lot of time on the gravel bar to the right of the sunken barge. I don't know to much about the flattys this being my first time targeting them and all but I have been having a rough time with the channels down there recently. A lot of drum down there though. Got a gar a few days ago too. It's easy to get to the island from the gravel bar provided the river isn't too high. The water between the gravel bar and the island normally doesn't go more than half way up my calf and you can easily see the bottom by lantern. Lock 3 one of my favorite spots when I get it to myself!! I look forward to having some fish stories to share with you all!! Thanks for all the help!
     
  6. flathunter

    flathunter New Member

    Messages:
    5,723
    State:
    Ohio
    Paitence is the greatest virtue when fishing for big flatheads..I take many fishless trips hoping for the bigones.
     
  7. dirt138

    dirt138 New Member

    Messages:
    126
    State:
    Springdale, Pennsylvania
    Okay so night 1 of my 3 day fishing marathon is over and I am sad to report that my first trip targeting flattys did not go as well as I had hoped. The day stared off good with me sending the wife and son off to my sister in laws for the weekend and heading to the lake just after the first storm of the day to catch some gill for the weekend bait. With 25 gill in just about an hour I decided to mess around and try to catch some bass since I had nothing to do until catfish time. 5 bass later it started to storm again so home I went. Turns out though I suck at keeping bait alive so shortly after that storm it was off to the lake again for another 15 gill and a quick stop for bubble thing to keep them alive. Head to the river at 6 and put up my little lean to rain tarp thing to keep the rain out (yeah right as if it was falling straight down lol) by this time the river is so high the gill feels like a 20lb fish. I catch nothing but not being a quitter I continue to try. At some point I decide to see if anything is hitting so aside from my flatty baits I put out a worm, some bread, corn, and chicken liver. Now we just have to wait.................. I don't know for sure because I am definitly no expert on the subject but I think the river may be just a little to high to fish right now. Be that as it may it is my 3 day fishing marathon so I sat there till 3:00 AM anyway. I'm soaking wet I didn't catch any fish, I was closer to lightning then I ever care to be again and it still was better than being at home watching tv lol. Think I might just go to my channel cat lake tomorrow and give the river some time to calm down. I can't imagine any fish bitting in that torent.
     
  8. catchinghogs

    catchinghogs Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,558
    State:
    Pennsylvania
    With a stick it out attitude like that you should be allright.
     
  9. auctionman

    auctionman New Member

    Messages:
    30
    State:
    pa
    Hi Rodger,
    It sounds like you had a "photocopy" of many of my fishing experiences. I think Mark (catchinhogs) heard about me and that is why he hasn't contacted me yet to go fishing. Hi Mark!
    My latest adventure happened when I took my new Lowe Roughneck out. As usual the rain started pounding down after I was on the lake. Did not install a bilge first. The boat stayed afloat though, even with water over my ankles.
    Lots more stories. Do not get discouraged. One tip. NEVER say the "F"ishing word before you plan on leaving. I learned to never say"I'm going Fishing" (the "F"ishing word) before I go now.
    Good Luck,
    George
     
  10. Blacky

    Blacky New Member

    Messages:
    10,351
    State:
    Philadelphia, P
    Don't give up! It took me a year and half of fishing before I git my first flathead.

    You also targeting a difficult fish too.

    The river I fish, I can guarantee sunfish, bass, carp, and channel cats on any giving day. But flatheads is a whole different story.
     
  11. dirt138

    dirt138 New Member

    Messages:
    126
    State:
    Springdale, Pennsylvania
    Okay everyone day 2 of my 3 day fish fest. For starters it wasn't raining today so morale was a bit higher. I headed down to the river around 9:00 PM tonight a little later than I wanted to but I had to cut the grass. I had marked the water line when I left at 3:00 AM that morning and the water line had come up a good bit more. I did find it odd that even though the river was very high and muddy it seemed very calm. At about 1:30 AM I got 1 hit then nothing. Let the bait sit for 30 minutes then brought it in to check it out and it was dead. Changed it and re set. some time around 3:00 AM I got 1 small hit on the other pole and waited 15 minutes checked and re-baited that one. 3:30 AM befriended a rat now named Sam. 4:00 AM Sam left. 5:00 AM I packed up and came home. Now I figure since I need some more gill anyway I will just make some coffee and head up to the lake and take a crack at some bass. One more night left maybe I will get lucky. If I dont get me a flatty soon I am going channel fishing. I need an avatar pic lol.
     
  12. Pennsylvaniacatchaser

    Pennsylvaniacatchaser Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    11,341
    State:
    Sarver, Pa
    Hang in there Rodger! :big_smile: Keep trying, good things come to those who wait! :wink: I'm heading tonight after a long week at work. Report will posted on the Allegheny thread tomorrow (hopefully with pics:roll_eyes:).
     
  13. auctionman

    auctionman New Member

    Messages:
    30
    State:
    pa
    Hi Rodger,
    Man, wish I had your energy! I enjoy reading your posts. Gives me a motivational boost.
    Good Fishing
    George
     
  14. dirt138

    dirt138 New Member

    Messages:
    126
    State:
    Springdale, Pennsylvania
    Okay just got back from bass fishing. I think I am going to die. Must sleep now. Did pretty good with the bass early on got 5 under 15" 1 16" and 1 18". Got my gill for tonight and now I got to get a few hours of sleep before I fall down sheetz coffee aint bad but it can only do so much. Thank you Auctionman for enjoying my posts. I love to write them and it makes it ever better when someone enjoys reading them. Also thank you to everyone who has given me advise and encouragement (spelling eh to tired). goodnight, day, morning, afternoon, or whatever it is for you.
     
  15. Zeke

    Zeke New Member

    Messages:
    16
    State:
    Pittsburgh, Pa
    Hi Dirt

    Next evening after a couple days of stable weather grab your Flathead bait and head back down to the dam. But this time, set up right above the dam. There should be a spot that gets you the closest to the dam itself on the upper side, although it's a slope.

    Cast your bait out at least 15yds from shore and about 10yds away from the dam itself. The bite should start right after dusk.

    Good luck.
     
  16. PhillyCatcatcher4

    PhillyCatcatcher4 New Member

    Messages:
    1,596
    State:
    S.W.Phila.,Penn.
    :0a25:Welcome to The BOC Derek. Its good to see brothers helping out fellow brothers with info and tips.:0a31::0a23:
     
  17. Zeke

    Zeke New Member

    Messages:
    16
    State:
    Pittsburgh, Pa
    Thanks Greg

    I was just browsing the web for cat articles after playing some Fishsim2, and found this place.

    Looking forward to reading some more.
     
  18. philly'swife

    philly'swife New Member

    Messages:
    119
    State:
    Phila. Pennsylvania
    Welcome to THE BOC.:big_smile:
     
  19. Zeke

    Zeke New Member

    Messages:
    16
    State:
    Pittsburgh, Pa
    Thanks again :big_smile:

    Looks like I need to get my post count up so i can view some photos :wink:
     
  20. dirt138

    dirt138 New Member

    Messages:
    126
    State:
    Springdale, Pennsylvania
    Hey Derek, Thanks for the advice!! I have not had a chance to hit that spot yet but I am looking forward to giving it a shot. I live right up the street from there and fish the dam a lot but have never went right above it. Do you fish this area a lot?