Tight Line Or Slack Line for Catfish

Discussion in 'Catfishing Library' started by Whistler, Aug 31, 2005.

  1. Whistler

    Whistler Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,084
    State:
    TN
    Original post made by Brian McKee(Brimcowa) on April 27, 2002


    Slack Line Or A Tight Line

    For me, the question of slack vs. tight line is quite dependent upon several variables. If I'm in swift current you'll usually find me working a heavy weight attached above a swivel (2-3oz) via very light line in case I hang up. I think Slimey mentioned a sinker equipped with copper wire in a grappling hook fashion that I think will work wonders in this case to keep down the snags you never get back. I can't wait to try it!

    Back to the question. I try to keep the line high and reel in the slack as weight settles to the bottom to keep bait from being dragged by slack left on the water! Once weight has settled I bring up all the slack.

    If I'm fishing a break off of a sandbar or a pool around an obstruction, I'll switch from the heavy set-up to a Carolina-type rig with a 1/2-3/4 oz barrel swivel or river weight to take advantage of the slow drift. I don't mind slack in this instance because I'm keeping an eye on the line and I'm right there with the pole taking up slack as it drifts past. This is a great time for nightcrawlers, leeches or a strip of squid! This is a more active approach of drift fishing from the bank and demands all of your attention.

    The Carolina approach is also a good test for submerged shallows at sun-down when cats seem to move up and tend to be more aggresive. Problem with this approach is you got to be prepared to accept a large mouth or a buffalo every now and then.

    I guess the point is, how active do you want to be behind the reel? How fast is the current before, in or past the structure where you believe the channels are holding? What type of bait (stink or live) and weight are you using in your presentation.

    Who knows? I may have it bass-ackwards but know this; just about the time you figure you got 'em figured they'll surprise you every time! Don't be afraid to experiment with your approach and don't forget to keep moving!

    Are you working the channel of the stream in question or are you on the break and are you allowing the bait to move? If you're trying to fix the position of your presentation in quick water cast above and try to keep that line high (wind permitting) so the current can't play with it and put you where you never intended to go! If you're fighting current and wind...

    Good Luck!

    Brian