Trolling for blue catfish

Discussion in 'Blue Catfishing' started by bank bouncer, Jan 28, 2007.

  1. bank bouncer

    bank bouncer New Member

    Messages:
    82
    State:
    INDIANA
    I'm changing my method for catching blues in my lakes, I'm going to troll for them. So I have a couple questions for this great source of information, first will circle hooks in a trolling method be an okay hook, second when I fish in full moons I have trouble finding them, do I need to fish deeper then.
     
  2. FishBrew

    FishBrew New Member

    Messages:
    329
    State:
    North Texas
    trolling or drifting?
     

  3. bank bouncer

    bank bouncer New Member

    Messages:
    82
    State:
    INDIANA
    I will be trolling.
     
  4. BAM

    BAM New Member

    Messages:
    827
    State:
    Tennessee
    I would like to here your reasoning behind trolling for blue cats.
     
  5. CJ21

    CJ21 New Member

    Messages:
    4,303
    State:
    Montgomery, Alabama
    Hey why would u like to troll for blue cats?
     
  6. bank bouncer

    bank bouncer New Member

    Messages:
    82
    State:
    INDIANA
    Mainly because I will be fishing unknown waters. If I would get on fish then I would possibly stop and fish. It just seems that my brothers and I only come up with fish in the 2-8lb range. So I thought I would try covering more water with a different method. Do you think trolling and blue cats don't mix.
     
  7. catfishrus

    catfishrus New Member

    Messages:
    1,569
    State:
    north carolina
    i think you got a great ideal in the right lakes though. not many folks doing it either. i have found blues when trolling crankbaits at santee before. catch one every pass too. might have done better anchored up on them but i found them trolling. some of my home waters are deep an get a thermocline in the summer months. i hear reports of striper fisherman catching big blues trolling alot at that time. i think blues in lakes suspend to feed alot more time than folks realize myself in deep water areas. i always seem to catch them on a ice blue rebel wee ree. i would lean towards summer time action and slow that troll way down because we caught alot in the turns which meant the crankbait slowed down. good luck with it and keep us posted.

    ps i watched the fish get feed at bass pro several times here and the blues feed off the top and would throw water out into the crowds. never seen the flathead move in the tank. i bet when the lights go out in there he feeds. the stripers was chasing the bait. good thing to watch if you get a chance.
     
  8. FishBrew

    FishBrew New Member

    Messages:
    329
    State:
    North Texas
    the reason I asked is because you stated trolling with circle hooks ... which would mean to me using live, fresh bait. I've never heard of that being done, doesn't mean it can't work. Now if you are talking about trolling with lures or artifical baits like striper fisherman do, thats pretty common in these parts during certain times of the year, especially for flatheads.
     
  9. chrisblue

    chrisblue New Member

    Messages:
    1,345
    State:
    SC
    Maybe he means slowly trolling with the trolling motor when there is no wind to drift.Thats what I do.
     
  10. FishBrew

    FishBrew New Member

    Messages:
    329
    State:
    North Texas
    That's kinda what I was guessing Chrisblue and heard of folks doing that. Never done it myself. In north Texas, usually to much wind is the problem, not a lack of it. :confused2: Should work fine on a lake. The type of hook to use I'd guess would be like it always is ... personal choice.

    I know using trolling motors in mild current (rivers, creeks) is effective in "walking" the bait down current. Basically use the trolling motor to control drift downstream at about half the speed of the current. Works great for walking the bait back into a drop off or hole.
     
  11. Mr.T

    Mr.T New Member

    Messages:
    2,553
    State:
    MO
    Circle hooks are an excellent choice for drifting or "trolling" if that's what you prefer to call it - use a rod that's not too stiff and the fish will just catch themselves.
     
  12. waterwalker

    waterwalker New Member

    Messages:
    604
    State:
    Louisville Ohio
    Never caught a cat trolling...I have drifting...maybe wrong, but good luck,
    if you have any luck, let us know.
     
  13. bank bouncer

    bank bouncer New Member

    Messages:
    82
    State:
    INDIANA
    I'm going to troll using a slow speed on a variable speed trolling motor. Since I don't have a lot of knowledge of baits I was going hodge podge, live and cut shad, shrimp, and any other told about baits. My main reason for trolling is to just cover alot of water, another problem maybe is I don't know what to do with the wind yet Thanks for the info, keep it coming.
     
  14. Katmandeux

    Katmandeux New Member

    Messages:
    1,618
    State:
    Checotah, Oklahoma
    I read somewhere (In-Fisherman?) that walleye fishermen back-trolling spinner rigs with worms or minnows catch a surprising number of channels.

    I wonder, too, about down-riggers...seem ideal for keeping drifted/trolled baits at the thermocline.
     
  15. Greg Alsept

    Greg Alsept New Member

    Messages:
    10
    State:
    Ohio
    On a full mone blues just tend to travil more. And no the Circle hooks suck drop down to a 2/0 owner AKI hook.
     
  16. Rookie12

    Rookie12 New Member

    Messages:
    1,324
    State:
    Kannapolis, NC
    I fish like you are talking about in the summer around here. Usually the winds aren't that bad in July and August and I use the trolling motor to just ease around. I lowere baits straight down to wherever I'm marking fish and got 2 slip floats out back. It works good, but usually Im'm over real deep water but only fishing 10-20 feet down. Blues suspend in the sumer and scatter out. I wouldn't do it right now, but in the summer, it's a sure thing. later
     
  17. WylieCat

    WylieCat Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    7,164
    State:
    NC
    Yes, you can troll for them and it is very effective.

    Yes, circle hooks are the ideal hook for this type of fishing.

    Drifting and trolling are basically the same thing. Technically trolling is using power to move the boat, i.e. a gas motor or trolling motor. Drifting is using current or the wind, though many folks who drift use a trolling motor to maintain boat attitude. I prefer to be underpower so that I can go exactly where I want to go.

    90% of my fish are caught trolling in the summer. Speed is not as critical in the summer as the winter when you have to be really slow to be effective. I use circle hooks 100% of the time. The movement of the boat acts as all the hook set you need to catch fish.

    Drift rigs are you best bet. That is basically a hook, leader of 18"-24", swivel, main line. The important added elements are a 1 1/2"-2" slip cork on the leader about 4"-6" from the hook, and a slinky (a.k.a. snake weight or worm weight) on the main line to maintain contact with the bottom. Weight of the sinker varies depending on how deep and how fast you are trolling.

    Boat speed is a factor, and it varies greatly with the time of the year. Generally I run .5-.75 mph per GPS. In the summer you can get by running faster. In the winter you need to be below .5 mph.

    Depth for trolling varies from 50 feet all the way up to very shallow. I catch fish in 6-8 feet of water regularly in the summer. Be warned that in shallow water is pays to keep the baits a good ways behind the boat. Some guys run out 100-150 feet. Deep water is not as critical

    Hope that helps.
     
  18. jtrew

    jtrew New Member

    Messages:
    4,404
    State:
    Little Rock, AR
    I'll agree that drifting and trolling are basically the same thing, except for method of propulsion. Trolling with lures almost always involves a considerably faster speed than trolling with bait, live or dead. Incidentally, down in Lake Ouachita (Arkansas) trolling live shad just above the submerged treetops is a very productive way to catch stripers. You can blind troll an area that you suspect may be good, or you can troll over structure or fish you mark on your fishfinder. The more you're trying to put your bait over a particular spot, or keep it along a winding channel, the more critical boat control is. A friend of mine used to troll chunks of blood across a lake, just barely creeping along, using only a couple of splitshot for weight.
     
  19. FishinRich

    FishinRich New Member

    Messages:
    29
    State:
    Colorado
    I have heard of it. Friends say they use Rapalas. They fish a shallow lake right in the deepest part of it, during the summer months. I have caught some big ones bass fishing on plastic worms and a gold Rapala but that was casting from shore. A twelve pounder on a light bass rod was quite a fight. We do alot of drift fishing. Thats a good way to cover alot water. Good Luck!!!
     
  20. jtrew

    jtrew New Member

    Messages:
    4,404
    State:
    Little Rock, AR
    Growing up, 75% of my bass fishing was trolling. I don't remember ever catching a catfish on a plug.