tips 4 small river??

Discussion in 'Channel Catfish' started by 4bratsdad, Sep 13, 2009.

  1. 4bratsdad

    4bratsdad Member

    Messages:
    241
    State:
    illinois springfield area
    ive been fishing sangamon river near my house sharp bends, log jambs, riffles etc. not much luck, river has dropped most of it is bout 4', just got new humminbird found a hole drops off to 14' fr bout 1/8 mile this im pretty sure prob deepest area ive ever found on this river, the finder showes lots fish at 9-10' tried a 3 way w/3' dropper,also small bobber at hook to susspend bait, using shrimp, cut/live bluegill, secret7, cut baby shad just few bites river is bout 60-75' across water temp 74 bout 80 air drops to 55 at night, what am i doing wrong?? everything ive ever heard says this hole will always hold fish, nothing close to this depth for30miles or more either way, river rats i need your help!
     
  2. etexun

    etexun New Member

    Messages:
    375
    State:
    Texas (Nea
    I fish a small river about 18 miles from my house. Some times you can catch some good ones and other times you can't buy a bite. How many times have you fished there? I would say keep trying. Talk to others that have fished it for a while. And just be patient.
     

  3. JoeDaCatKing

    JoeDaCatKing New Member

    Messages:
    750
    State:
    PA
    try switching to cut chubs or suckers bluegills dont work the best for me so i reccomend a softer fish...
     
  4. FLATHEAD STEVE

    FLATHEAD STEVE New Member

    Messages:
    1,772
    State:
    DESMOINES IOWA
    Bring alot of variety when it comes to bait.... try what is most abundant to yor river system, try the spots you often pass up on your voyage to find cover or holes, try differnt times of day/night. You did not mention the types of rigs you use so try switching them up.. This is not a give me sport! You have to pattern the fisherie you are fishing, which by the way may change from year to year and requires extreme dedication and new ideas. Just keep your mind open to trying different things and keep a log book of what works when. This will give you a genral direction as to what to do the following years give or take a few acceptions. I find catfishing to be just as grueling to adapt as any other kind of fishing!... There is a science to it and you are the scientist.... If you want to catch good numbers on a regular basis than it will require a TON of research and hit an miss. I would take a note from everybody that replies to this thread but if they are hundreds of miles away... Some of the techniques that they use WILL not work in your situation.... go explore and have fun doing it......GOOD LUCK ON YOUR QUEST!
     
  5. 4bratsdad

    4bratsdad Member

    Messages:
    241
    State:
    illinois springfield area
    i will try the chubs, i have a few, i just found this spot yest. tried couple hours afternoon, then hit it last night 5-8, will b trying it more the river has dropped to inches in this 2mile stretch at either end, i have been up and down this river many times over last 20 years& have always looked 4 logs, sharp bends, most of this river is 2-4' right now, few 8' holes on bends ill keep tryin thanks
     
  6. daystarchis

    daystarchis New Member

    Messages:
    11,521
    State:
    Clovis Cali
    Keep trying and take a variety of bait:wink: Have you tried minnows on a slip bobber?
     
  7. DLB-in-GR

    DLB-in-GR New Member

    Messages:
    490
    State:
    MI
    I agree with what Flathead Steve said. I could tell you what I do, but it might not fit your situation, and when I try my usual methods for my favorite lake on other bodies of water around here I don't always catch fish. But Steve gave you great advice. I think variety is the key, try different baits and let the cats tell you what they prefer. Sometimes Secret-7 dip bait won't work but they will bite Sonny's that day, sometimes they don't seem interested in cut bait, or the kind of cut bait--try what you can catch from the river as that will be what they are used to eating. Or they might bite livers, just keep at it and you will get them. Once you figure out what they want you'll be successful. You know you've found a spot and are marking fish, which is a step up from me, fishing from shore...

    Great luck to you,
    Doug
     
  8. 4bratsdad

    4bratsdad Member

    Messages:
    241
    State:
    illinois springfield area
    gonna try again tonight for a bit, thought bout using a float setting it for 9' &letting current take it through them, am i wrong to think this hole must hold cats??? just wondering if the fish im reading are drum or carp, always thought lot of channels/flatheads would hold up in deepest holes or structure like logjambs, then prowl at night along banks flats etc
     
  9. 4bratsdad

    4bratsdad Member

    Messages:
    241
    State:
    illinois springfield area
    tried again, 4 days now w/ no luck, sonar shows fish stacked on top each other, tried cut chub, brought out the livers, slip bobbers at diff depths, most this river is 2' now droppin, hole is 13', overrun w asian carp bout 10", i saw hundreds but they seem be on the surface, dont wanna give up, thought this was my pot-o-gold, but im frustrated, never tried it in the mornin yet, most fish seem to be on bottom now, bottom4' cheap sonar, but it shows them literally stacked when i cross this hole
     
  10. JoeDaCatKing

    JoeDaCatKing New Member

    Messages:
    750
    State:
    PA
    you may not have catfish in there try other methods of fishing like using carp bait or artificial lures now im interested in what you got in that river of yours
     
  11. JoeDaCatKing

    JoeDaCatKing New Member

    Messages:
    750
    State:
    PA
    crap I didnt even think about it but try again only this time throw some large live baits like bluegills or shiners. There might be some big flatheads in there
     
  12. Iowa_Josh

    Iowa_Josh New Member

    Messages:
    1,463
    State:
    Central Iowa
    It may not be late enough in the year for them to really want deep water. If there's a spot with tons of cover and 3', they may be there instead. If the hole is super full of fish, it may even chase them out. I don't know if that is possible but they seem to not like being disturbed in my mind. If you keep pokin them with a stick, they'll swim away, etc. Get some snaggin hooks, snag carp till you're tired and setup a sleeping bag on the nearests sandbar and soak bait all night a few times.
     
  13. rockbass

    rockbass New Member

    Messages:
    1,107
    State:
    Ohio
    Sounds very similar to my local river. I have also come across some places that should always hold fish, but still have problems with getting fish.

    From what I have learned is keep trying. I fish places that some people I have fished with have told me they would never even try only to find out they produce some fish. Guess what happens next? Those same people that say a spot doesn't even look worth a try end up fishing it and complaining about other people fishing there when they want to fish it :smile2:

    I would try many baits and try it more than a few times. There are some places that even though they SHOULD be good all the time will turn off and on in a short period of time. On my local river, most of the places I fish produce depending on the water levels.....and by levels I mean a simple change in depth of less than a foot either way can be the difference between catching fish and getting skunked. It takes time to map out areas and when they are best. I have spots that are in every location....shallow, deep, wood cover, rock bottom, mud bottom, you name it. Some are seasonal spots, some are only good at certain depths.

    Keep hittin the areas and you'll find a pattern!
     
  14. 4bratsdad

    4bratsdad Member

    Messages:
    241
    State:
    illinois springfield area
    i'll prob try it again, its on a staight stretch of the river that is bout 2 miles long, the water is bout 8" deep at each end now, i live right in the middle, local ramp is next door, this hole was dug years ago to hold water for towns water supply 1920's some locals told me u cant catch em when its droppin like this only when its rising, i have tried live bluegill every time except last night, thanks guys
     
  15. Fl.catman

    Fl.catman New Member

    Messages:
    132
    State:
    Fl
    Channel Cats come into the shallows to feed at night. This is often an overlooked feeding habit. Many times I get hits within 4-5 ft from shore while at the same time can't get a hit in deeper water. The bait fish move close to shore at night this draws in the cats to feed in the shallows. Try to use the least amount of lead as you can get away with and a #2 Aberdeen hook. Bait a few hooks with chicken liver,worms & small cut bait or shrimp. Place them 2 ft - 6ft from shore and work out in two ft intervals. Also try a slip bobber rig working the shallows in the same fashion. Once you land a few adjust your hook & bait size to fit your needs.
     
  16. playin4funami

    playin4funami New Member

    Messages:
    4,104
    State:
    Saronville Ne.
    I too fish a river very similar to what you describe,it hold flatheads,channel cats and carp also a few bullheads. On my little local river all the big nasty carp have layed claim to the deeper holes and runs,I never catch catfish in them,but the washouts underneath the logjams are a catfishes idea of heaven with the river washing in food and cover overhead they don't have to work real hard for a meal.
    The banks of this little river are always covered with lepoard frogsand they make the finest bait in that river,when nothing else will work a lepoard frog will still catch their interest every time.
    Heres how I fish it,and do very well if I do say so. During the day, get upstream from a logjam whether you tie off,anchor,or fish from shore it doesn't matter. Now a rig. I use a plain old slip rig with a light egg sinker(I want the current to move it) a swivel,and a lighter lb. test leader then a 5/0 hook. I like a nice wide gap short shank hook,like the diachi's and some owner hooks for this set up. And the bait,dead fresh frogs,live ones will work but will do their best to get you tangled up if they can.I keep them live until use them smack them upside the head and run the hook up through their bottom chin and bring the hook out between their eyes.
    Now toss your baited rig in just above the logjam and let the current run the bait right into the washout under the logjam,be ready cause it won't take long,a minute or two then pull it out and try again,if I drift a frog under a logjam two or three times without a hit I move on to the next logjam. This works and can be fast and furious action,Sometimes I only get one fish out of a single log jam sometimes three or four before I move on. I am very carefull to not overfish these spots and never harvest more than one fish at each log jam,and try to only keep a fish from every thrid log jam,but thats up to you. I can go there anytime and catch fish and I'd like to keep it that way.
    At night I use the same set-up but with a no roll sinker and fish the shallows and below the riffles,It can get crazy sometimes then too. these arn't big fish,I've been fishing this little river of mine for 25+ years and the biggest channel cat was a 22 lber and the biggest flathead was only 27 lbs and the flats are far and few in between.

    Good luck and I hope I helped you out some. the frogs are the way to go in the little rivers,but I can't buy a bite on them at a big lake,I guess it's what the cats are normally used to eating.
     
  17. festus

    festus New Member

    Messages:
    7,660
    I'd try playin4funami's advice on the log jams, and also try maybe crawdads or nightcrawlers for bait also. But you're liable to hook one of them pesky largemouths or smallmouths so just be patient and maybe a catfish will be there.
     
  18. mattr

    mattr New Member

    Messages:
    280
    State:
    PA
    I think your variety of baits is just fine, I don't think it is the baits as much as it is your location. Keep using the same baits, but try moving more. If after a half an hour you don't get hits, move on to another spot and give it a half hour. If you get nothing there, try moving again. Repeat this till you get hits.

    Find the fish first, don't relegate yourself to one hole on the river. Move a lot till you find em. Also go simple on your rig. Scrap the three way, and the bobber. Fish a simple sliding sinker above a leader and use enough weight to hold it on the bottom. Use smaller bait and smaller hooks till you get fish. Once you find the fish and what works, just keep trying similar spots to where you found them the first time. Put time on the water and you'll be fine, hope I could help. :big_smile:
     
  19. 4bratsdad

    4bratsdad Member

    Messages:
    241
    State:
    illinois springfield area
    ive tried noodle juggin it,this hole stretch, even dropped 6 in the hole with line to bottom 5oz wheight average 3per night 3lbseach, but i only ran em few hours 36jugs total, also put out 6 bank lines on my property and got robbed from campers next door THEY got 3 large channels i hear i have a public boatlaunch/campground next door long story but thought i was safe w/ no other boats runnin the river, anyways cant find many frogs,toads yeah, banks are scarce of frogs have been told by to people that know ths hole that it's a carp spot tried corn not a bite, did hook a big one on jug w/ bullhead but i couldnt get him from around log8' water bent hook tryin, gonna trap some dads, try salamanders, got most so far on mudleaches, lotta shrimp robbed though would love to jug it all night, really hard by myself in dark.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2009
  20. 4bratsdad

    4bratsdad Member

    Messages:
    241
    State:
    illinois springfield area
    caught a leopard frog, in the yard, grabbed my rod walked down to bank, caught a 3 lb channel, 1frog= 1 fish, then got robbed on the shrimp i took along, 12 shrimp= 0 fish, gotta find more them frogs i didnt get any more hits on the frog after he died, but man did that cat slam him, thats why i like catfishin.