Tips for those hot slow fishing months on the ohio river banks

Discussion in 'OHIO RIVERS TALK' started by Desode, Aug 19, 2008.

  1. Desode

    Desode New Member

    Messages:
    185
    State:
    Ohio
    Hey guys, I know that things have been slow for a lot of us on the Ohio river over the last month or so. Now I'm no fishing guru by any means, but I figured that I would post some tips and ideas that have helped me get through this slow time and still catch some fish. Now I ain't catching a ton of cats but when its slow, like it has been this last month, 3 or 4 fish a evening is better than nothing.

    I mostly fish from the bank on the ohio river so that makes it even harder during slow times like this. Here are some tips and ideas to try out, and maybe they will bring you some success also.

    1. Take one day out of the month and plan a scouting trip for some new spots.
    Its easy to get discouraged when your fishing 1 or 2 spots that are your favorite holes and your getting skunked week after week. Not only is scouting new spots fun but you can find yourself learning new or forgotten fishing tactics that you will have to use for a new spot. This may also help bring up new action at those favorite old holes. One great free way to plan your afternoon scout is to use Google earth to scout from the eye in the sky ( satellite) before you even leave your house. Its a great way to look for old locks and and sand bars , streams going into the river and bends with small coves that create swirl spots. The great thing about google earth is you can also see all the roads to get as close as possible to these new spots you want to check out. It also lets you mark these spots on google earth with a thumb tack icon and a name that spot feature, example "fishing hole 1 " ect . You can then keep a memo on that location so you know what is at that area , and what you have caught there at different times and conditions.

    Next, go find those new spots, but remember to respect the landowners, I'd say that most of the time when I find a spot with private property signs blocking the way, I just take the time to ask permission, and the landowner is very kind. I have also learned some great tips and local fishing info , plus got to go on the land. The worst thing that can happen is they say no.
    When you get to that new spot make sure to have one rod setup with a bobber. Why ? because #1 you don't know what snags are out there yet, 2. you want to see what the current is doing so you can find swirl spots and things like that. Make multiple casts at different lengths out into the river and see where that bobber flows to and comes to a stop. Remember thats where the food flows also. I have found and caught fish when nothing seemed like it was bitting by using these currents that I learned with a bobber. Remember those big Flatheads love to lay in wait with the current bringing them food.


    2. Mix up your bait selection. This goes without saying but , instead of taking a bunch of one or two baits take a little of each and if you don't get a bite in 20 minutes then try something else. I know for me I have had days over the last month when the fish have been super picky, to the point where I would finally put on a the right bait and catch a couple of fish or get some bites for a hour then nothing at all. I'd then put on another bait and cast it in the same spot and get action again. Now I mostly mix it up like this in the slow times on atleast one pole. If you have had steady success on another bait in that area, keep using that on your other pole and don't be afraid to let it soak for the whole evening. I have also had good luck combining baits during slow times. Blood bait does work, if you have some in your tackle box that you never use, try combining it with live bait , this can make a difference at times, by making a good sent trail to your live bait. I have had good success with berkley blood bait in combination with shinners. Another thing is if your using large live bait don't forget to make it bleed some. I use bluegills and small saugeye a lot and some times putting some slices in their sides before tossing them out can make a difference. If your blessed and catch a little bullhead by all means use him as bait ! snip those wiskers off and make him bleed a little then toss him out there. Flatheads love those little guys and I have had them actually swim to a flathead on many occasions. Its like they think that the flathead will save them ! In his eyes dinner is being delivered to the front door ! :smile2: If you have some worms that have had to much sun and are just about to start falling apart don't through them out just yet. Put them all on a big hook and toss them out there. Yeah you heard me right put them all on there.Let them dangle if thats what it takes to get a mess of worm on that big hook.
    You may notice some faint tiny bits at first. This is a good sign that little bait fish are cheacking it out and that draws the attention of something bigger that wants what the little guys are nibbling on. I have caught some nice fish at the end of the day on worms that were just on the verge of falling apart.

    3. Drifting your bait. I know most people drift bait when on boats but I have had good luck doing this on the bank when nothing else would work. This last week I found a current swirl at one of my spots that I never even noticed was there because I didn't do my scouting all the way. I had been there for 3 hrs with not even a single bite, then I put some cut bait on and just let it drift into that swirl and BAM ! 6pd cat . I honestly think that some times there are fish that could have food 10 feet from them but just don't want to move to get it, however if you drift it naturally past them in the current they will hit it.


    4. When the water is really hot like it has been here over the last month or so, try hitting some spots where there is water flowing into the river or go to a lock. I find that when the water is in the 80's they are where there is more oxygen being made or their in a deep hole not moving around much waiting for the bait to come to them , even more so than normal. It seems to me that the best spots for me this last month have been where both of these elements combine. An example is one spot that I have where there is a water pumping station, that has a stream coming into the river on the right side of a sand bar. If you stand on the end of sand bar right out from the front of it there is a 30 ft drop off. I swear when the water hit 78 to 80 they left my 3 other spots right up the river and moved to that one. They do that every year when the water gets hot like it is now.

    5. Structure. Well we all hate getting snags , but take that snag anger and let it turn into great knowledge of where there is structure with fish laying on it in that area. I have even gone as far as putting just a sinker on by itself to find snags and how big they are. I know people that won't fish where they get snags and let me tell you this, I have caught a lot of fish off of those snags that they hate. I have done so well on snags, that when I'm fishing a new spot and someone near by says "man don't fish over there you'll get a nothing but snags ! " I go right there and know I'm going to catch fish. Remember the fish are going to be on the side of the structure that dosen't have current slamming into it. You may even try drifting the bait past the side of the snag. Structure is very important when catfishing and even more so when it comes to flatheads. Those Fresh water freight trains love laying on structre with current going right past them.

    Well those are 5 things that I feel have helped me catch catfish over the last month when none of my friends have been catching anything. I'm sure a lot of you guys already know this stuff but maybe it will remind you of a technique that you haven't used in a while. I hope that maybe it can help some of you guys out there. One thing I have learned is it pays to put in the time to know everything you can about the spot your fishing. If anyone else has any other tips feel free to add them to this thread. Thanks for your time and consideration and best of LUCK !
    Sincerely, Matt AKA DESODE
     
  2. Monsterkat11

    Monsterkat11 New Member

    Messages:
    297
    State:
    Ohio
    great post!
     

  3. One Legged Josh

    One Legged Josh New Member

    Messages:
    458
    State:
    Ohio
    Thanks for the info!
     
  4. brother hilljack

    brother hilljack New Member

    Messages:
    7,305
    State:
    Shelbyville, TN
    Great post, thanks for this valuable information, this is exactly the kind of post that makes this site so valuable.
     
  5. Netmanjack

    Netmanjack New Member

    Messages:
    3,734
    State:
    Ohio
    Google, Google, Google lol I like the way that you can zoom down to the water level and look at the bank. I wish I had that four hundred dollar program! You could probably count the beer cans lol :crazy::eek:oooh::smile2::smile2::smile2:
     
  6. OhioRiverCatfisher

    OhioRiverCatfisher New Member

    Messages:
    284
    State:
    West Virginia
    Matt, thanks for the post and good info. Very nicely done!
     
  7. beetle

    beetle New Member

    Messages:
    1,003
    State:
    Ohio
    Some real good tips in that post Matt, Thanks!
     
  8. catfishrollo

    catfishrollo New Member

    Messages:
    6,894
    State:
    Ohio
    Very Nice write-up Matt. Definetely worthy of the library. Oh, BTW.. it is in the library!:wink: rollo
     
  9. Garrett Cope

    Garrett Cope New Member

    Messages:
    711
    State:
    Columbus Ohio
    Those are some great ideas Matt. I use windows local live sometimes (google earth is good too) because they have that "birdseye" view on some locations that really lets you pan in and see some great fishing spots in decent detail. Thanks for the ideas!
    Garrett
     
  10. MDBuckeye

    MDBuckeye New Member

    Messages:
    8
    State:
    From Ohio in Maryland now
    Matt - Good post man. Wow this is my first post as well.

    I am new at the catfishing game, sortof. I used to fish for cats in Ohio, when I lived there as a kid. Since then I have picked up flyfishing when I lived in Utah and now since I am living in Maryland where you can fish in the Chesapeake Bay for Stripers, Bluefish and other bottom fish, which I bought a boat for and did before my son was born. Now I have sold my bay boat and bought a jon boat and mainly bass fish but want to get into the catfish scene here on the Potomac.

    I don't know much about it so I wanted join here and see if I could pick some things up. Which I have already and its only been a week.
     
  11. Desode

    Desode New Member

    Messages:
    185
    State:
    Ohio
    Hey MDBUCKEYE welcome to the BOC , this is the perfect place to get info and tips on catfishing :big_smile: Plus there is nothing like catching a Big Ole Fresh water freight train (flathead cat). These guys on here all know there stuff and its a great place learn and share ideas and fishing information. Welcome aboard !
    Matt, AKA DESODE
     
  12. Catmanblues

    Catmanblues New Member

    Messages:
    2,224
    State:
    S.E Ohio
    Catching a huge flat makes the blood pump faster! You find some of the most knowledgeable fisherman on this site with just about any answers you seek!