Trophy blue catfish fight tips

Discussion in 'LOCAL CALIFORNIA TALK' started by bluehunter, Sep 3, 2009.

  1. bluehunter

    bluehunter New Member

    Messages:
    3,004
    State:
    Los Angele
    I write quite a few editorial and I thought I would share a good one with yall since we have some trophy blue quest entusiasts here. All of these methods been tried and tested by me and experienced so if you keep these things in mind it should help ya. Hope this can help you. Always willing to contribute and share the knowledge.

    B


    Trophy blue season is fast approaching ( Fall thru winter) and it is about that time to get ready. Many people may actually hook a giant blue, but only a few will actually land one. There are many different reasons to this:

    1. Not the right gear - too light of line,reel, pole, etc.
    2. Too small of a hook - bend hook, broken hook, not hooked in mouth deep enough causing a spit hookup.
    3. Loosing fish to faulty knots.
    4. Bad line, frizzled, not changing line in a while.
    5. Not a good drag set on reel.
    6. Letting fish run with no resistance from you the angler.
    7. Running into anchor line.
    8. Getting caught in snags - rocks, trees, etc.
    9. Buried hook in bait causing not a good hook set.
    10. Crossing lines.
    11. Not a big enough net.


    There are a few more reasons why people lose big fish, but I pretty much gave the top 11 reasons, and all of the reasons I have experienced before once or twice. I have lost way more big blues than I have caught. The loses was turned into a learning lesson. Soon after I evaluated what went wrong in my head and what could have been done better, I made a mental note to myself to not let that scenario happen again and I played teh scenario over agin in my head. When those same situations came up again - which it did and will -I was able to react better and do something different or the opposite of what I did before and was able to land that big trophy blue. So when you going after that trophy blue at Irvine, Lower Otay, and San Vicente when it opens back up, follow some of these simple steps when adversity comes at you when you are fighting that fish.

    1. Use ready gear for trophy blues. You will not always be lucky using a barble pole and 8 pound test. Use medium to heavy action rods. A reel with good line capacity. Plus line that is formatted for what you are fishing in gear and in water- open water, rocks, snaggs. The more structure, the heavier the line.

    2. Use a big enough hook - 6/0 to 8/0 at least. You want to have enough hook to penetrate that tough mouth of the big blue cat. They will not always swallow the hook, and a small hook during a good fight in a trophies mouth can pop right out flying past your head. It happen to me before.

    3. Tie a good strong knot. The polomar knot , trilence, or any other tough durable knot you know, tie it. Lots of lost big ones come because of knot strength and is highly avoidable if we take the time to do it right.

    4. Change that line often. Especially when fishing snaggs and structure as line can become damages. Plus the normal wear and tear of the line can result in a lot of memory to the line.

    5. Check that drag. You do not want it too tight. Too tight can snap a line, bend a hook, or yank that hook out of the fishes mouth. You want some resistance, but not too tight and definitely not too lose as a loose drag can cause a fish to drop the bait if tension is not constantly applied.

    6. Don't just let that blue run with no resistance. You want that head facing facing towards you, not the head facing away from you. If the heads facing away from you he will find some where to snap you of at or run into.

    7. Watch that anchor rope. Make sure your anchor is at an arched wing presentation. If your anchore is straight up and down that can mean trouble and he will wrap you up. keeping rope at an angle will give you more room to manuever around the rope If the fish is destined to run in the direction of the rope and you have a partner with you, have the partner pull in the rope immediately. If you are by yourself tighten up the grip and turn that head away from the rope. A lot of times enough pressure will turn that head.

    8. Try to avoid the fish running into snaggs if you can. Keeping pressure on the fish helps eliminate that if the head is facing you.

    9. Make sure you have enough of the hook exposed with the barb present. You dont know how many times I reeled in my bait with the hook buried in the bait smashed in. Sometimes big blues will just smash your bait and you want to be able to get a good set if that happenes.

    10. Watch out for other lines, bring them in if necessary if you have a partner. Crossed lines can make for trouble. Keep a knife handy if by yourself and cut that extra line if needed.

    11. Have a big enough net. I heard many stories of people losing big fish because they had a panfish net or trout net. If you are serious about catfishing you need to be serious about the net that you use as well. Use a big enough net that maybe your child can fit into or maybe even yourself. There are some giants out there. And the giants will require a giant net.
    Hope this helps and good fishing to you in your trophy hunt.

    Brian Bluehunter Cummings.
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2009
  2. CatMan(Cali)

    CatMan(Cali) Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,070
    State:
    Fresno Californ
    Thanks. Great info as always. It's just like the flatheads. I already felt I knew what to do before I went down, even though no better teacher than experience itself. I feel confident that if the opportunity presented itself with a big bluecat I could handle it, literally. Good lookin Blue.:wink:
     

  3. shania

    shania New Member

    Messages:
    5,942
    State:
    San Leandro, Ca
    Yea B - :0a27: with Big Sean - good info Bro.
    :wink:
     
  4. daystarchis

    daystarchis New Member

    Messages:
    11,521
    State:
    Clovis Cali
    Nice post Blue. Reps to you:wink:
     
  5. KnotGillty

    KnotGillty New Member

    Messages:
    401
    State:
    Northern Califo
    Good points man.

    Another point I'd like to make is to use decent gear. I'm very selective with terminal gear such as swivels & hooks. No need to be cheap with those things when you're hunting big fish.

    Bent hooks & broken swivels happen when you buy the cheap off brand items.

    I also can't say enough about #9. I use fairly long strips of cut bait when fishing for trophy channels. Don't bunch it all up on the hook like you would a bunch of nightcrawlers. In my opinion, too many fishermen think they have to hide the hook in the bait. A fish doesn't know what a hook looks like & doesn't care if it's fully exposed. The more of the hook being exposed, the better the hookset you can achieve.

    Lastly, fresh bait, whether it's live or dead, it always a good thing.

    Thanks for the pointers Brian
     
  6. Catfish_Scooter

    Catfish_Scooter New Member

    Messages:
    2,055
    State:
    Tennessee

    You hit the nail on the head! Really appreciated reading this, thanks for sharing.. it would've been a great entry for the article forum.:big_smile: Reps on the way bro.:wink:
     
  7. KnotGillty

    KnotGillty New Member

    Messages:
    401
    State:
    Northern Califo
    Never give up. Persistence pays off and I'm confident you'll hook into a big fish soon. Having your Line tight or loose depends on several factors. If you're using a sinker that's fixed to your line, they you have to tight line it. If you're using a sliding sinker or you are fly lining (no weight at all), they you can slack line your presentation. I prefer to use a combo of both methods by using a reel with an audible line out alarm. The one I'm fond of most at the moment is the shimano baitrunner (spinning reel) as the line out feature can be set soooo lightly that the fish doesn't even know he's pulling line off your reel, but at the same time, you don't have to be watching your pole because you'll hear it. An excellent reel for fishing in the dark as you don't have to watch your pole to know when a fish is messing with your bait.

    There are other reels that work well including a lot of bait casting / level wind type reels, but I haven't found any yet that have a line out feature thats as smooth as the Shimano baitrunner.

    Keep with it BDB. You'll get a new PB soon.
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2009
  8. bluehunter

    bluehunter New Member

    Messages:
    3,004
    State:
    Los Angele
    Scott you should upgrade to 8/0 circles gamakatsu hooks. The best ones out there IMO. Using circles you can tightline but I would only do that with a really good rod holder that is clinched good. I believe you have some good holders already so you should be good. Just sit back and let that rod load up and bend down real good and you can get some loading cats. Works really good for finicky cats and channels especially. Blues as well. But for the giants( 50 plus) I don't like my rod to load up like that. Some hits like there is no tomorrow. If you are going to let your rod load up use the light action rods and not the heavy action ones. The light ugly sticks for example because you want something that has some give in the loading process. If it is too stiff it will not have any give and can cause some missed strikes upon the loading up process.

    Scott there is nothing like your first giant blue. I still remember mines at 43 pounds back in 1998 or 99. I was on cloud nine because I missed so many prior to that at Irvine Lake. Took the picture and released it. The first one to get is always the hardest. After that it is more easier. You will soon see. The more you go, the more chances you will have.

    B
     
  9. SGTREDNECK

    SGTREDNECK New Member

    Messages:
    1,522
    State:
    Tennessee
    Thanks for the info. I agree with all the tips. I will have all my bases covered this winter. A big net is key. the bigger the net in the boat the bigger fish you will catch:big_smile: thanks again Good luck