Noodling on the Missouri River...

Discussion in 'MISSOURI RIVERS TALK' started by Dave53, Jul 6, 2006.

  1. Dave53

    Dave53 New Member

    Messages:
    411
    State:
    Lonedell M
    I hope this is not too long winded but I wanted to share this with you guys, and gals. A week or so ago I met a couple guys on the river and he was saying how they caught a bunch of blues on jugs using hot dogs for bait.. now I have heard this several times in the past and fished with them myself a time or two.. but this past weekend was great. My son and I got up and was at the Missouri River at daybreak. We put out 14 jugs (actually 18" noodles with 10" of pvc sticking out of the end) and preceeded to float down stream..after about 30 minutes we had our first fish in the boat..a nice blue about 3 pounds..short time after that we had two small fish on..one blue and one channel. Enjoying the early morning and all the river had to offer my son and I sat and talked as we floated down stream. While looking at the jugs behind me my son yells out..fish on! Just as the jug went under water..we both sat there waiting for the jug to pop back up but it never did! We were in 16' of water and the jug was set at 7'. We ran and picked up all the jugs and searched the area for over 30 minutes but the jug never did come up! We put the jugs back out and talked about how big the fish would have to be to take that noodle under water and keep it there.. After about 30 minutes we had another fish on..this time the jug went under but came back up..it had a 9 pound blue on it.. As I was putting the jug back in the water another noodle stood up and started up stream..catching up with it we caught a 5 pound blue.. Things then seemed to slow down..it was about 7:45 in the morning..I was tired and we were only out a couple hours!.. After about 20 minutes in the middle of the current we had another noodle stand up..go under..come back up then under again hard. This time it never did come back up! Two in one day! I have never lost a jug like that and this day I lost two! We caught two more small cats and brought in the jugs and started going up and down the river looking for the two missing jugs but never found them. The next day we were back out on the river hoping we would have another day like the day before.. We put in at the same place and floated the same waters and nothing! Over two hours of floating and we had one small cat in the basket.. As I was checking the bank line for the two missing jugs a noodle came into my vision and stood straight up and went under! I yelled at my son who was driving the boat to head for the jug but it was still under so I pointed to the area..as we were almost to the area the jug came up and started the "Jaws" routine going up stream..I grabbed the little dip net and was leaning over the front of the boat as we caught up with the jug.. He was pulling but not very hard then all of a sudden he broke water and I knew I grabbed the wrong dip net..all I could say to my son was big fish, big fish.. I got the dip net in front of him and pulled it over his body with half still hanging out of the net as I brought him in..he was tipping the scales between 20 and 22 pounds... This happen to be the last fish we caught that day.. All the fish we caught were on hot dogs! I cut them up in 1" pieces and fished them from 3' to 8' deep with circle hooks. This was one of my best weekends on the Missouri River that I can remember..but when you hear someone say they fish with hot dogs..you might want to give them a try.. I have changed a couple things since I lost the two jugs..I have put corks (floats) with 20' of 40 pound line on them so if one of the jugs goes under the cork will pop out and you can find them.. The cork thing worked fine with the 22 pounder though he did come back up to the top with the jug. I also bought three more noodles and I plan to make several "long" noodles at least 2' to 30" long and see if they hold them under water!
     
  2. sfleischli

    sfleischli New Member

    Messages:
    20
    State:
    Labadie, Missou
    I was out on the Muddy around 8am'ish on last Saturday, and was there until 4pm or so and absolutely nothing but pesky bites and no hooks. I have always thought about drifting like that but never have. I remember seeing a boat with two guys in it and what seemed to be 1,000 (just kidding) noodles floating around. Were you east of Washington or West?

    Anyway, have you ever drifted with rod and reel? If so, how did you do it and what was your success?

    Maybe see you again out there. I will be out again tomorrow for sure. What type of boat you have again? I am usually in a 17ft Skeeter, white/green.
     

  3. crazy

    crazy New Member

    Messages:
    2,090
    State:
    Kansas CIty, MO
    Umm I guess that's why everyone I ever see jugging the river use those 5 gallon cooking oil jugs. I think you where under gun. haha... really though I talked to some guy's the other year that landed an 80+ pound blue that took there 5 gallon jug under for awhile.
     
  4. jholl949

    jholl949 New Member

    Messages:
    836
    State:
    Mannford. Oklah
    It's possible that the fish took those jugs under and hung them on a rock or stump or something. Even the big fish can't hold them under an indefinite length of time.
     
  5. kccats

    kccats New Member

    Messages:
    634
    State:
    Olathe, Kansas
    Wow, that would be pretty intense! Bigger noodles for sure!
    Great story!
     
  6. fishingbuddy4

    fishingbuddy4 New Member

    Messages:
    1,564
    State:
    Warner Rob ga
    great dave ,i have been thinking how a person could do that ,where you in the middle of the river or on the side ,and do you have any problem keeping up with the jugs or do they all stay together as they go down stream?
     
  7. jolle

    jolle New Member

    Messages:
    59
    State:
    O'Fallon, MO
    We use quart oil jugs but I've never tried them on the river. I use them for short unweighted lines, about 3', so that I can reach down and untangle if snagged. We've used them on MTL a lot and have caught up to a 52# flat on them, and several more over 30. The 52 took about 45 minutes to land, and had the jug under water for 5 minutes at a time, but would eventually slowly cruise to the surface to the relieve the pressure. The water was not that deep however (<10'). I think current would aid a fish in holding under a jug, especially in deeper water, but I'm not certain. A noodle is also slender so the resistance is less to pull it under, as opposed to a round jug with a flatter face.

    We also use gallon bleach jugs for 15' weighted lines. We've had fish yank them under momentarily, but never disappear.
     
  8. RIVER-RAT

    RIVER-RAT New Member

    Messages:
    3,128
    State:
    MO / MT
    Thanks for sharing that Dave!! One question, any particular brand of hotdog? Glad to hear you're out there catchin' fish!
     
  9. elalr

    elalr New Member

    Messages:
    193
    State:
    warsaw missouri
    good to hear someone catching fish. its been very slow lately for me. ive tested my noodles and it takes only 8 lbs of pressure to sink them. 2 litres have proven to me to be better. i also agree that the more surface area creates more drag in the water. good luck in the future
     
  10. cross_their_eyes

    cross_their_eyes New Member

    Messages:
    156
    State:
    Show Me State
    Great story Dave!!!
    Thanks for the advise. Maybe I'll try those dogs sometime...easier to catch than shad :)
     
  11. Crawdad

    Crawdad New Member

    Messages:
    115
    State:
    Mid-Missouri
    Dave, that sounds like a great weekend with your son, and one to relive many years from now. I bet the fish will grow, too! lol
     
  12. CQuest

    CQuest New Member

    Messages:
    10
    State:
    St.Peters, Missouri
     
  13. cpalombo

    cpalombo New Member

    Messages:
    318
    State:
    Nashville TN
    What a great story. Thanks!

    What is a noodle? Is that a PVC float or something?

    How does noodling work? Do you just float along with the baited bottles? Do they get lost? Do they stay close to you. This sounds very fun. I want to know more so I can try it.
     
  14. dcaruthers

    dcaruthers New Member

    Messages:
    756
    State:
    Alabama
    Noodles are the 6ft long bright colored foam toys used for kids swimming. I cut mine in 24" lengths and never had a problem with fish keeping them under. I have caught blues up to 30 lbs on them and no problems.
     
  15. porboy

    porboy New Member

    Messages:
    629
    State:
    TX Panhand
    Darn David, 24" noodles, I never thought of that. I see where it would work.
    May I ask how you rig them?? Mine are only half that. A man is never to old to
    learn new tricks, or is that dog.
    Bill
     
  16. Dave53

    Dave53 New Member

    Messages:
    411
    State:
    Lonedell M
    I did have jugs, noodles, that I made out of 16 to 18" styrophone with 1/2" pvc pipe that ran through the noodle and out of one end about 8".. I have been using circle hooks but recently changed over to large treble hooks..I was afraid that I would have fish swallowing them but that hasn't happen yet. I met some guys on the river that used trebles and only missed a few good hits where I was missing several with the circle hooks. I have changed over to straight styrophone noodles.. I cut about 20" of the big 4" noodle, run the line through the noodle about 2" from the top and measure off 3', or 4' and 5' of line..attach a small 5/8's sinker and a large swivel. I then drop the swivel through the center of the noodle and let it come out the other end. When the fish pulls on it the noodle will stand stright up and its not just pulling on one end but through the noodle from the other end. For a little added secruity..I have small corks that I have attached 10 to 15 foot of 30 pound line to and I push this down the center of the noodle..this line is attached to the heavy line I have that runs through the top of the noodle. As the fish pulls the noodle under the water pops the cork out and if he takes one of these noodles down I'll have that little cork floating! When that 20 pounder took the noodle under he had the cork with 10 ft of line running behind him..so far this seems to be working. I have used gallon jugs but they take up so much room..I can carry the noodles 9 at a time in a milk jug case and using a swivel I take the hooks off and put them up so they dont get as dull as my circles did..the big fish was caught on a circle..let you all know if the big trebles hold the bigger fish..
     
  17. PeZ

    PeZ New Member

    Messages:
    757
    State:
    Oklahoma
    here are the noodles i use the 14" of noodle 19" pvc with an eye hook in the cap on the end the eye hook has a nut and bolt not the screw in type and i use 5" of rebarb in the pvc so whn u get a hit the flag they seem to work great
     

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  18. tncatfishing

    tncatfishing New Member

    Messages:
    916
    State:
    clk. tn
    Souds like alot of fun. Nice noodles their. I have seen noodles at walyworld for around four dollars a piece.
     
  19. dcaruthers

    dcaruthers New Member

    Messages:
    756
    State:
    Alabama
    I'll post pics tonight for those that are interested. I have seen some fancy set-ups in the library, but I do them cheap and effective. I set out up to 50 at a time and inevitably lose some of them. I cut strings 6' long. I tie a 1/2 sinker on each line about 1ft from the end of each string. Then I drop the weighted string through the hole in the middle of the noodle (I only by the noodles with hollow centers) until it comes out the other end. I then wrap the line around the outside diameter about 3-4 inches from one end and tie a secure knot, ensuring that I compress the noodle a bit with the line. This holds it secure. You should end up with the line tied at one end and then the line running through the middle and out the other end. Secure a hook and your done. I have had much better hook-ups on circle hooks than any other. Most of my noodles are set at about 3-4 feet deep. I keep some set with longer lines (usually a different color) so I can find fish depths when fishing with slip floats. Hope this helps...I'll poost some pics tonight.
     
  20. dcaruthers

    dcaruthers New Member

    Messages:
    756
    State:
    Alabama
    The noodles I am using are from Wal mart and costs 99 cents each. Regular price.