Shore fishing the Ohio River, anyone care to share some advice? (new to area)

Discussion in 'LOCAL OHIO TALK' started by WAREHOUSE, Jan 16, 2010.

  1. WAREHOUSE

    WAREHOUSE New Member

    Messages:
    4
    State:
    Cincinnati
    Hey guys/girls,
    I would sure love some advice for shore fishing the Ohio River and East Fork Lake. I moved here 2 years ago and I have struck out every time I go out. I've been reading through the "Bank Fishing" forum section, but was wondering if anyone in Ohio (Cincinnati area) could post some advice that might help locally. I've only caught catfish in pay lakes and would really like to learn some new tactics for the Ohio River and East Fork lake.

    I'm interested in what baits I might try, what kind of setup, and possible safe fishing locations on the river where I don't have to worry about getting stabbed.

    Maybe this information will help:
    My current method has been to use cut bait from a blue gill that I catch with a Snoopy pole, or chicken liver tied up in pantie-hose balls, or stink bait from the store.
    I have a 8foot medium action rod with a large spinning reel, 30-40 pound braided line.
    I usually put a sliding sinker(1-2ounce) on the line to a bead+swivel, I tie on a 20pound leader to my hook, and bomb it out on a sliding float as far as I can.
    I do not usually set the depth on my bobber...and consequently I get snagged up on the bottom a lot.

    I've tried East Fork by the dam & on the spillway and usually get snagged up every time because of high water levels and all of the rocks.
    I've tried the Ohio River in 3 spots: down by the Montgomery Inn boathouse, down where the Little Miami dumps into the Ohio River, and down by Turkey Ridge Park. I got snagged a few times, but felt I really couldn't get out far enough in the river to catch anything.

    Should I try setting the depth on my bobber or using a balloon for a bobber to let the wind carry it out on the lake? Should I try live bait instead?

    Please advise!!!
     
  2. Salmonid

    Salmonid New Member

    Messages:
    1,833
    State:
    SW Ohio
    Plenty of fish in the areas on the Ohio you listed and contrary to popular pay pond belief, you do not have to cast very far out to catch some nice cats. I bet 80 % of the cats I catch are within an easy cast from the shoreline ( I am boat fishing) Perhaps the same rig with maybe more like 3-4 oz of weight out on the bottom may be a better approach then you drifting into snags with a float. Adjust your weight to the current so the bait stays on the bottom, better too much weight then not enough if your using a slip rig where the line slides through the sinker. Best baits are shad, cut or fresh, skipjacks if you can get them and in late spring/summer whent the flatheads are active, those live bluegills or cut bluegill heads will work.

    Good luck,
    Salmonid
     

  3. JBrooks

    JBrooks New Member

    Messages:
    742
    State:
    Cincinnati, Ohio
    Bank fishing the Ohio River can be very frustrating but once it's figured out, it can have it's benefits.

    First, I would recommend a larger ounce size for your sinkers. I wouldn't go any smaller than 5 ounces. I have 5 ounce and 8 ounce no roll sinkers. Be ready to lose them, finding a spot on the Ohio River (or any river you're bank fishing for that matter) without snags will be hard to come across. Learn your bank fishing areas well, learn where to cast and not to cast. Learn to cast over the snags or before the snags. Most of my bank fishing spots on the Ohio include deep holes that I can cast into. If I reel in, I usually get snagged. "Jigging" the weight instead of yanking on it will help you hop out of the holes quicker. Reel in very fast and in a jigging motion to keep the weight bouncing. This doesn't always work, but will work occasionally and save you some rigs.

    If you're targeting flatheads or fishing heavy cover, switch to monofilament line. Braided line has poor abrasion resistance compared to monofilament. Use a lighter leader line than your main line. This will prevent you from losing your entire rig (sometimes). Buy lots of sinkers and hooks, as I said, be prepared to lose rigs. I buy sinkers in quantites of 50 - 100 at a time, and I have over 30 of the two main hooks that I use (8/0 Gamakatsu Circle, 8/0 Catmaxx JHook).

    I wouldn't recommend using any kind of float, as the current will constantly cross your lines and eventually drag your float back into the bank. I always, always, always fish bottom when I'm bankfishing the river.

    When the river is high, fish closer to the bank. I've heard stories of people catching nice fish 5 - 10 ft from the bank. I never try this method, but when the water is high - I usually stay within 20 - 40 ft from the bank.

    As far as lake fishing goes, I cannot help you there.

    Bank fishing is hit or miss. If you have a great spot, keep at it and treat it well. My "great" nights have all came from the bank, with the exception of a few boat outings that could have been done from the bank, meaning we were fishing in sections that could easily be reached from a bank fisherman.

    James
     
  4. Catfish-fever

    Catfish-fever New Member

    Messages:
    141
    State:
    Ohio
    I have fished from the shore at the Serpentine wall. The best spot is behind the ice breakers at the upstream end of the wall. If you are able to make a long drive, try the Kentucky side of the Meldahl Dam. You can fish on the Kentucky bank with your Ohio fishing license, so long as you don't cast into a tributary. And Kentucky pole limits apply. I have not been there, but have been told there is decent shore access at the power plant near portsmouth.
     
  5. CatHunter24

    CatHunter24 New Member

    Messages:
    715
    State:
    Dayton, Ohio
    Don't overlook the GMR for bank spots as a decent flathead fishery if you are bank bound. I personally have had next to no luck on that river, but I know some buddies on here who have pulled some good fish there. The serpentine wall I have heard is a good bank spot, and I have a boat and know the channel is relatively deep right off the wall there. If you can get access fish outside bends in rivers. There will be deep water a relatively short cast from the bank, and you also should have a shallower ledge in close to the bank to allow you to work multiple depths. As James said, be prepared to lose rigs.....this goes for boating too, but bank fishing especially because of the angles you are reeling in at. If you are using Braid, you can try to free snags by snapping your line like a banjo or guitar string real hard while you are tugging....sometime this vibration frees the stuck hook or sinker. If you want to try to save more lead, you can run a lighter leader than your main test.....usually you will snap the mono leader and then save your swivel and lead.

    Another decent bank access spot to fish, but only in certain times of year I suppose....spring being one, is Meldhal Dam. You really should fish this stretch from the Kentucky Bank though, as the Lock is on the Ohio side and doesnt provide as good of fishing. Fishing the tailrace can produce huge fish in the right conditions and with some practice. Im sure catfish Rob will be along for some advice on bank spots, he fishes the Cincinnati area from the bank regularly.
     
  6. bluejay

    bluejay Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    8,507
    State:
    Napoleon, Mo.
    Wel;come to USCA Robb.
     
  7. Jeremy Sheffey

    Jeremy Sheffey New Member

    Messages:
    2,388
    State:
    Columbus, Ohio
    first off welcome to the BOC.

    I was a payponder myself until i got on here and started trying to learn how to switch over. it is a completely differnt ball game fishing a real lake or river compared to an overstocked pond. those paylake floats are useless when fishing the river, they are just a pain in the @$$ compared to just fishing the bottom. a wild fish will strike more aggressive than a paylake fish and you can really cross his eyes if you like.

    ill give you a list of equipment that i take and that will give you an idea of differnt setups and equipment you will need to think about using. there are different rigs for different situation, and when fishing the river, simply moving 100 yds down stream could call for a rigging change. because of the size and type of lead you will be using, most people pour their own sinkers because of the money they save. i didnt in my first year, but i was fortunate enough to make good friends with some guys on this site that were willing to share. now i am pouring my own and i will have plenty of sinkers now.

    Hook choice is up to you, however i prefer a circle hook because i seem to get a better hook up rate. the fish set the hook themselves, and it is important you got the tackle section here and look through some threads and ask questions about the types of setups and hooks/terminal takle everyone is using. that way you can find what fits you best.

    8ft-10ft MH-H rods
    Abu Garcia 6600-7000 reels
    6/0-10/0 GAMA Offset Circle hooks
    5/0-10/0 Gama Offset J hooks
    3oz-8oz No-Rolls
    2oz-8oz Flat bank and Bank sinkers
    100lb swivels (not snap swivels just barrel swivels)
    80lb Power Pro or 50 lb Big Game (depends where i am fishing, this year i am fishing just braid)
    i spool of 10 - 15lb Mono (cheap for sacrifice rigging)
    1 spool of 40-50lb mono (Berkly Big Game for leaders)
    Beads (i get a bag of them from walmart or the craft store for about a dollar much cheaper than "fishing beads" and they work the same.
    King Kat Bobbers (i make mine or you can buy them)

    when fishing the river i will stay on the bottom, using as light a sinker as a can get to hold bottom. No-Rolls will work better than Egg sinkers because even a heavy egg sinker will roll with the current and a flat sinker wont. same with a regular bank sinker vs a Flat Bank Sinker.

    when fishing a soft bottom that isn't snaggy i generally use a slip rig, or carolina rig. make sure with the heavy sinkers you are using beads at all points that it will contact your knots.

    when fishing a snaggy bottom, i fish a sliding sacrifice or 3 way rig. ill post a pic below. it allows me to only loose my sinker and keep the rest of my rigging while at the same time i have the advantage of a Carolina rig allowing the fish to pull the bait and hook with little to no resistance of the sinker.

    i generally use circle hooks on all my rigs unless i am using a really big bait, and i want to use a quick set rig on it. (hook in the head and one in the tail)

    as for bait i would continue to use the bluegills, but add in skip jack and shad to your bait selection. if you are going after just eaters then some dip bait could work, but i dont like it.

    when fishing for cats, the type you are after and time of year is as important to catching them and how to find them as anything. there are forums on this site for all types and they can help you find what you are looking for. personally (because i can in KY) i fish as many rods as i can handle, and i set them all up in different ways until i locate the fish. some nights there in close eating shad other nights they are out far eating live channel/bullhead cats. so ill set up a rig in multiple positions with multiple baits until i line out what is going to work.
     

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    Last edited: Jan 17, 2010
  8. CatFuStyle

    CatFuStyle New Member

    Messages:
    211
    State:
    Xenia, Ohio
    Welcome to the BOC!!! if you cant find it here, well its going to be tough to find, there is more information on here than ill ever probally be able to read through LOL the best advice i could give is, take everything in and go with what works for you and like another brother said, dont overlook the GMR.
     
  9. Blacky

    Blacky New Member

    Messages:
    10,351
    State:
    Philadelphia, P
    Fishing any big river like the Ohio from the bank is difficult.
     
  10. Catfish_Rob

    Catfish_Rob New Member

    Messages:
    727
    State:
    Cincinnati, OHIO
    Howdy. I primarily fish the bank in cincinnati. I am not sure where you are coming from but I can give you a little advice on spots and bait. First thing, buy a cast net and learn how to use it. You can catch shad at the public landing or off 9 mile road in the creek. I am been doing pretty well catching large gizzard shad off 9 mile recently. If you can get shad you can use a bunch of different store bought baits. I have had chicken breast and thighs work for me in the past. If your primary bait is bluegill, I have had luck on the little miami river with shovel heads in the spring and summer, but you gotta watch out for the gar in late spring and early summer. I either use a carolina rig or three way rig, in some cases when I know there are holes off the bottom, I use a large float with live bluegill or shad. Now for the places to fish. It changes seasonally. Right now it is tough for the bank fisherman because the fish are pretty deep. There are a few places off kellogg ave you can park and fish, I try the red church looking thing past schmidt fields and the leblond recreation center right down the road. You can park there without the worry of getting robbed or stabbed. On the little miami there are a few spots I can lead you towards. There is a spot in loveland off of lyon road where I catch flatheads but not much else. There is a hole off loveland madiera in loveland, you have to walk down a mountain - its where the semi truck parks. There is another place by the beechmont bridge- you can park by speedway there and walk to the left to get to the bridge. You can look at google maps - look for a bend in the river near a place you can park - it has worked for me in the past. I hope some of this helped. By no means am I the best fisherman , but I still catch some fish. Good luck.
     
  11. kitsinni

    kitsinni New Member

    Messages:
    1,573
    State:
    Ohio
    I had probably the worst luck Ohio River fishing from the bank IN HISTORY. Before I got a boat I literally don't think I once ever cast in to that river and got my hook back out of it. So I would suggest to bring a lot of terminal tackle.
     
  12. WAREHOUSE

    WAREHOUSE New Member

    Messages:
    4
    State:
    Cincinnati
    This website is like a Cat-fishing Fraternity, lol! Thank you so much for the helpful advice.

    I'm taking notes as fast as I can absorb the knowledge here...sounds like the most important thing I need to research is my choice of fishing spot, and then my bait/rig. I'll definitely try changing to a 3-way swivel. I'm interested in buying a casting net too, maybe I can pull a body or something cool out of the Ohio River with it. Maybe with a little more time and practice I can become a mini-Catfish_Rob hehe
    Thanks again!
     
  13. fishmonster13

    fishmonster13 Member

    Messages:
    700
    State:
    cincinnati,ohio
  14. Netmanjack

    Netmanjack New Member

    Messages:
    3,734
    State:
    Ohio
    Welcome, listen for your own good, don't use a three way swivel, use a three way rig with two barrel swivels. This lets your weight slide when fishing the bottom, or holds it up off the bottom when tight lining.
     
  15. catfishrollo

    catfishrollo New Member

    Messages:
    6,894
    State:
    Ohio
    This is the rig that I mostly fish also for flatheads. I have some 3-way swivels, but I prefer the double barrel rig as well. . Nice thing about the double barrel rig ( modified 3-way) I call. Is when fishing bait-clicker there is less tension when a fish runs with the bait, and you have that 3-way advantage over a standard Carolina rig, where if you get a sinker hung during a fight, thats your mainline! Sinkers seem to find crevices, get hung, long before the hook in my opinion.. Good post Jeremy and Jack! I agree 100 percent! rollo
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2010
  16. Netmanjack

    Netmanjack New Member

    Messages:
    3,734
    State:
    Ohio
    Here you go Moose..:good:
     

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  17. Moose1

    Moose1 New Member

    Messages:
    574
    State:
    STEUB, OHIO
    GOT IT. THANKS I TRY THAT.
     
  18. Catfish-fever

    Catfish-fever New Member

    Messages:
    141
    State:
    Ohio
    I never have liked 3 way rigs unless it is under a float. I opt for a sinker slide and flat bank sinkers.
     
  19. Netmanjack

    Netmanjack New Member

    Messages:
    3,734
    State:
    Ohio
    :time-out:Bryan, A three way rig is only good for one thing, that's keeping your bait off of the bottom with out a bobber, thus giving your bait some movement, but not allowing it to drift down stream, or hide under bottom cover. A three way rig would have no benefit over any other rig, hanging under a bobber. You must tight line, if you want the effect this provides. I use this set up exclusively, when fishing the banks of the Ohio River. Give it a try, you'll like it.:glasses-cool:
    Here is a quick visual aid.
     

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  20. katfish ken

    katfish ken New Member

    Messages:
    4,092
    State:
    Paintsvill
    I use the same rig as that Jack. I always use a lighter line for the sinker lead so if the sinker gets hung in rock I just loose the sinker instead of hook, line and sinker.