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#11461340 - 03/07/16 01:22 PM Is there something to key in on River catfish?
AdanV Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 04/03/10
Posts: 2680
Loc: Katy, TX
Hey yall,

This past Saturday, I lost the opportunity to take the kayak to the coast, so I went instead to the Brazos river to try to some river bank catfishing near Simonton.

To my surprise, the water level was much higher than I thought, while the current was strong as well (we haven't gotten any rain for a while).

In short, I was there for about 4 hours and got skunked. frown
The only thing I hook and landed where pieces of timber.

My questions for this particular day would be:

In rivers, where would catfish typically like to hang out at? Is there something that could be keyed in on?
(Near structure, behind structure, in strong current, in weak/no current pools?)







Edited by AdanV (03/07/16 01:23 PM)
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#11461420 - 03/07/16 01:56 PM Re: Is there something to key in on River catfish? [Re: AdanV]
Ian679 Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 07/24/15
Posts: 37
Loc: Waco
Depends on how strong the current is. If it's strong enough that u have trouble having a 4oz weight hold I like to target behind structures where the current "swirls" and a little down river of a sharp bend. The current beats on the wall creating swirling current and digs out deep holes where the cats can relax and pick out bait fish. Ivr had much luck with these few things

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#11461648 - 03/07/16 03:33 PM Re: Is there something to key in on River catfish? [Re: AdanV]
AdanV Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 04/03/10
Posts: 2680
Loc: Katy, TX
Thanks for the response and details.
I still have a lot to learn about catfishing in rivers.

I was casting a 3-way rig with a 2oz disc sinker.
In areas where there was current, the 2oz wasn't enough (it took off downstream as soon as it hit the water).
I did find some pools of calmer water where I had my line tapped a few times.
However, I couldn't tell whether it was catfish nibbling, or just submerged broken timber rubbing against it.

I've been to this area about 4 times now. Twice I was skunked, and twice I had a decent day.
The 2 times it was decent, the water level was very low and current was steady and calm. The times I got skunked, the water was high up and strong.
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#11461741 - 03/07/16 04:14 PM Re: Is there something to key in on River catfish? [Re: AdanV]
Big Zee Online   happy
Extreme Angler

Registered: 02/05/08
Posts: 1781
Loc: East Yegua
Always remember in a river, when the current is strong, the fish half to use more effort to get their meal. Like was said, look for the swirl or eddy. On times when the river is calm and normal, make notes to yourself of areas where there are gravel bars, brushpiles or other structure. When the water comes up, these might be good spots to hold cats. Also hanging tree limbs close to the bank, in calm water, are good places to look for cats. The Brazos is a big river and it can be hard to read. But with time on the water, it will come to you. Also, be careful in high water on the Brazos or any river, the whirlpools can lead you to the under current real fast. I've seen flatbottom boats with a 20 hp motor have problems in the high current. Lot of water came down the river last year. When the summer months get here, should be great fishing!
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#11462956 - 03/08/16 08:48 AM Re: Is there something to key in on River catfish? [Re: AdanV]
AdanV Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 04/03/10
Posts: 2680
Loc: Katy, TX
Okay, thanks Yegua.
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#11463170 - 03/08/16 10:12 AM Re: Is there something to key in on River catfish? [Re: AdanV]
Muzzlebrake Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 12/26/14
Posts: 1004
Loc: Euless
If the water is muddy and rising the cats will feed right along the edge of the bank.
Normal water I like to fish in the eddys right below a sand bar or riffle. Cats will stack up in the eddy pools waiting for food to drop down to them. Much like democrats. Cast into the swift water and let it drift naturally down into the pool.
I also like fishing log jams and brush piles but get ready to lose so hooks and weights.
Shad gizzards and hand dug earth worms are sure fire baits.


Edited by Muzzlebrake (03/08/16 10:12 AM)
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#11464087 - 03/08/16 03:40 PM Re: Is there something to key in on River catfish? [Re: AdanV]
erittmueller Online   happy
Angler

Registered: 07/25/15
Posts: 254
Loc: Irving/Valley Ranch
Rivers and creeks are my favorite for fishing for catfish. Target the following spots: Outside of sharp bends, especially if there is an undercut with tree roots sticking out. Inside of bends if there is a sand bar, fish where the water slows. Circular eddies, float rigs work great for finding them. Medium flow or deeper water that has fallen timber in it is $$$$$$, the big ones sit under the logs and ambush prey, if you find a tree fallen over in the river you most likely found a 10+ pound cat minimum. Go get'em bud!

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#11464140 - 03/08/16 03:56 PM Re: Is there something to key in on River catfish? [Re: Muzzlebrake]
AdanV Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 04/03/10
Posts: 2680
Loc: Katy, TX
Originally Posted By: Muzzlebrake
If the water is muddy and rising the cats will feed right along the edge of the bank.
Normal water I like to fish in the eddys right below a sand bar or riffle. Cats will stack up in the eddy pools waiting for food to drop down to them. Much like democrats. Cast into the swift water and let it drift naturally down into the pool.
I also like fishing log jams and brush piles but get ready to lose so hooks and weights.
Shad gizzards and hand dug earth worms are sure fire baits.


Thanks Muzzle.
Often the water where I'm located is pretty much always muddy.
I do recall seeing some sand bars around on GoogleEarth. It'll take a bit of walking, but I don't mind.
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#11464151 - 03/08/16 03:59 PM Re: Is there something to key in on River catfish? [Re: erittmueller]
AdanV Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 04/03/10
Posts: 2680
Loc: Katy, TX
Originally Posted By: erittmueller
Rivers and creeks are my favorite for fishing for catfish. Target the following spots: Outside of sharp bends, especially if there is an undercut with tree roots sticking out. Inside of bends if there is a sand bar, fish where the water slows. Circular eddies, float rigs work great for finding them. Medium flow or deeper water that has fallen timber in it is $$$$$$, the big ones sit under the logs and ambush prey, if you find a tree fallen over in the river you most likely found a 10+ pound cat minimum. Go get'em bud!


Thanks erittmueller.

All this info definitely helps alot.
Whenever I fished in lakes or ponds, I would just pull out the Navionics app and focus in areas that had significant depth changes.

Hopefully I can go back soon and will post a report afterwards.
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#11465519 - 03/09/16 08:49 AM Re: Is there something to key in on River catfish? [Re: AdanV]
Corey Stanley Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 10/26/09
Posts: 815
Loc: Tx
Originally Posted By: AdanV
Originally Posted By: erittmueller
Rivers and creeks are my favorite for fishing for catfish. Target the following spots: Outside of sharp bends, especially if there is an undercut with tree roots sticking out. Inside of bends if there is a sand bar, fish where the water slows. Circular eddies, float rigs work great for finding them. Medium flow or deeper water that has fallen timber in it is $$$$$$, the big ones sit under the logs and ambush prey, if you find a tree fallen over in the river you most likely found a 10+ pound cat minimum. Go get'em bud!


Thanks erittmueller.

All this info definitely helps alot.
Whenever I fished in lakes or ponds, I would just pull out the Navionics app and focus in areas that had significant depth changes.

Hopefully I can go back soon and will post a report afterwards.



It wouldn't be a bad idea since you said you use the Navionics app, to look around in low water times as stated above or when using google earth on low water shots and drop a way point with a description of what you are marking in your Navionics app. Then over time, you can bounce from way point to way point until you run into a few fish. Just a thought.


Edited by Corey Stanley (03/09/16 08:51 AM)
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#11468168 - 03/10/16 09:45 AM Re: Is there something to key in on River catfish? [Re: Corey Stanley]
AdanV Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 04/03/10
Posts: 2680
Loc: Katy, TX
Originally Posted By: Corey Stanley
Originally Posted By: AdanV
Originally Posted By: erittmueller
Rivers and creeks are my favorite for fishing for catfish. Target the following spots: Outside of sharp bends, especially if there is an undercut with tree roots sticking out. Inside of bends if there is a sand bar, fish where the water slows. Circular eddies, float rigs work great for finding them. Medium flow or deeper water that has fallen timber in it is $$$$$$, the big ones sit under the logs and ambush prey, if you find a tree fallen over in the river you most likely found a 10+ pound cat minimum. Go get'em bud!


Thanks erittmueller.

All this info definitely helps alot.
Whenever I fished in lakes or ponds, I would just pull out the Navionics app and focus in areas that had significant depth changes.

Hopefully I can go back soon and will post a report afterwards.


It wouldn't be a bad idea since you said you use the Navionics app, to look around in low water times as stated above or when using google earth on low water shots and drop a way point with a description of what you are marking in your Navionics app. Then over time, you can bounce from way point to way point until you run into a few fish. Just a thought.


Yup.
I've definitely been studying maps, especially on GoogleEarth's timeline option which gives the layout as years go by.
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#11474131 - 03/12/16 10:49 PM Re: Is there something to key in on River catfish? [Re: AdanV]
sapalmer Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 02/24/07
Posts: 564
Loc: Dallas
best catfishing success I have had is finding a low water dam......the cats just stack up there. Like fish in a barrel.


Edited by sapalmer (03/12/16 10:49 PM)

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#11474194 - 03/13/16 01:24 AM Re: Is there something to key in on River catfish? [Re: AdanV]
Ledeez Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 09/01/15
Posts: 706
Loc: Lake lavon
Hand dug (shovel) worms is king in creeks&rivers! Fast water... Hug the bank close to structure. Leaves are killin me right now! Don't check it often!
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