Flathead catfish seems to be popular. We are going to learn about baits. Also, several rigging. Here is a Flathead catfish fishing tips that people don’t think about. Time plays a role too. How long we leave the line in the water matters. The average length of time is 30 minutes. Then we reel in and check the bait, then recast it. Speaking of time, pre-tying the leaders will save time.
The Double Hook Rig
- A double hook rig is a leader line and two off set hooks. We snail knot both hooks. Now start with the first hook being about 1 foot from the swivel. Our 2nd hook is about 2-3 inches from the first hook. The hook will end up being 6 inches apart after we snail knot it.
- We are going for big fish so we are going to use big bait. We take a skip jack and fillet one side to about halfway down and cut the rest off. The reasoning being is we cut into a bit of the backbone and that’s where the blood seems to congregate. What a great Flathead catfish fishing tips.
- We are careful how we rig the bait because we want to keep both hooks really exposed. The first hook pit in one nostril and out the other nostril. Now we see where the other hook lays. Take the second hook and barely sticks through the skin by the backbone. Make sure the hook is exposed. Pull the hook through by the eyelet.
This Is Rigged As A Caroline Rig And How To Fish It
- It’s rigged on a Caroline Rig. If the bottom is not rocky, we can use a No Roll weight. Cast the line out and slowly let it sink to the bottom. Now reel it just a bit to get the weight off the bottom and slowly reel the line to the boat. When the weight is directly straight down from tip of the rod. We want to position out the line 3-5 feet off the bottom and just let it drift freely. Now we wait for that big one.
Cut And Live Bait Flathead Catfish Fishing Tips
- Using cut or live bait is seasonal with bait itself, When the skip jack are running in the spring, run skip jack. Late in the winter the shad are running, use shad. If the fish are not biting on one, use the other. With skip jack bait the Flathead catfish tend to go for the heads. Hook the skip jack in the nostril and out the other nostril for cut bait.
- The risk of using live bait is that the bait will swim into and around cover. This tangles the line.
- Now there are many methods to rig live bait. Here is a few ways to rig live bait.
- Take the hook through the bottom of the mouth right up to the nose. The hook will swivel left and right. Now for cut bait, we can hook into the head of the shad the same way as the live shad. With the belly gut pieces, just hook it through the guts and out through the belly. The reasoning being the belly is strong where the ribs are and don’t tear as much.
We May Consider This Two Hook Rig
- If the bites are slow, we may consider running two hooks on one leader line about 2 feet apart. With the weight on the bottom of the leader. Now we suspend the line, we do not drag it. The cut bait we use we cut into smaller sizes of bait, when running this type of leader. Now the hook size we downsize one size hook on this leader as well. The cut bait needs to be fresh.
Setting Up A Single Hook Leader Line
- We use 40 pounds mono line with a 3 way swivel, which helps to get unstuck in brush. Attach a quick snap to hold the weight. Here is a Flathead catfish fishing tips. We tie our hook with a No Snail Knot.
- To tie a No Snail knot we take our leader line and feed the line through the front of the eyelet. And feed the line to the end of the shank. Hold the line with your finger and wrap the line around the shank 7-9 times. Then take the other side of the leader and put it through the back to the front eyelet and pull the line tight. By tying the No Snail knot this way gives the trigger effect to go forward for the hook to set.
- Our leader line can be 12-18 inches long with 50 pound line. We tie it on the 3 way swivel attached to the main line.A Flathead catfish fishing tips is to have the weight and the main line together. When pulling the rod up, our chances are good to be getting the weight over and out of the brush.
Catching Our Own Bait
- Now if we are going to catch our own bait, here is how we do it. For the cast net, we look for a true 6 panel design with a pound per foot. Learning how to throw one is the key to catching shad bait.
- To catch our skip jack we use a rod and reel. The best way to catch skip jack is tying a series of crappie flies or grubs onto a line. We can go with three to a line. We can pick from 2-6 crappie flies or grubs on the line. Basically we are making our own cebiche style rig.
- We can use different colors if we choose. The best main colors are chartreuse and white. Now the skip jack may go after other colors on some days. And other colors on other days. Sometimes we may reel fast and twitch them and other days we may reel them slow.
- Now we carry another rod and reel set too. This one has a Foley spoon with a one ounce weight up above the Foley spoon. The Foley spoon has weight and it is a little single hook spoon. This set up works really good at certain times of the year.
- When fishing deep waters we reel the fish up slow to decompress the fish. On catch and release if we reel the fish up fast, when putting the fish back in the water, the fish will stay afloat on top of the water and die. This is a new Flathead catfish fishing tips that I had not thought of.
I hope you have been able to take away some techniques.
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