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Becoming a Successful Catfisherman
By Jeff Williams of Team Catfish Trophy Catfishing Trips

If you want to become the very best fisherman you can, there are 3 main guidelines to follow:

1) Buy the very best electronics you can afford. I would suggest saving your money and getting a locator in the $400 to $800 range. My boat is equipped with $1500 of electronics and they are the most important tools in my boat. I am lost without them.

2) Learn how to read maps while on the water and using your electronics to find all those underwater hiding spots that everybody else is driving over.

3) Learn the habits of your fish. Blue cats have different habits than Channel cats. White bass act different than Crappie. Study the fish themselves and you will soon see that they will show up in the same places and times year after year and bite the same baits year after year. Remember, fish do not know where they live or what lake or state they are in. Patterns from Oklahoma lakes work in Kansas, etc. Fish behave the same wherever they live.

For instance, when catfishing a lake with a manmade current or natural current, always anchor your boat on the upstream side of the submerged river channel. It might not even seem like there is any current, but if you have had high water or if they generate for electricity, there will always be a small amount of current flowing through the lake. Fish the submerged river channel just like you would any other river with the current taking the smell of your bait downstream.

Furthermore, the cycle of Blue cats is exactly the same as the cycle of the Shad or other baitfish you have in your lake. Don't kid yourself: pay attention to your fish locator. The masses of Blue cats will always be somewhere around the masses of Shad. Look for the bait, catch some bait, cut them up and drift fish with a Carolina Rig through the schools of baitfish. Don't be scared to fish in 30 to 50 feet of water, either. Blue cats can tolerate deep water year-round.

Believe it or not, but wintertime is the also the best time for Blue cats. Catching the fresh bait can be hard, but after that has been accomplished, look for huge schools of fish in the submerged river channel. It might take 4 hours to find the schools, but once you've found them, anchor your boat somewhere on the top side of the channel and cast your baits from the top of the river channel to the bottom of it. Wait 30 minutes and move. If they are there and in a feeding mode, it will be fast and furious action.

Lastly, when targeting Flatheads, always fish with live bait and remember: there is a difference between live bait and lively bait. Make sure your bait is really squirming: the more vibration in the water, the better the chance for a Flathead to find it.

Follow these general guidelines and you should have a strong head start in mastering the art of catfishing. Good luck and tight lines!

Copyright © 2002-2005 Jeff Williams

You have permission to publish this article free of charge as long as you are not selling it in any way and that you include the author bylines immediately visible with the article and, if published in an electronic medium such as on a web site, you provide a link back to www.catfish-guide.com in the author bylines with the text "catfish guide from Grand Lake Oklahoma" and a link to www.teamcatfish.com with the text "professional catfishing products at Team Catfish":

About the Author:

Jeff Williams hails as a catfish guide from Grand Lake Oklahoma. He has also guided successfully on Lake of the Ozarks, MO, Truman Lake, MO and the Missouri River. Jeff is a seasoned tournament pro that also speaks at many seminars annually, plus is continually in the media spotlight via TV, mainstream magazines and newspapers. He represents many national sponsors that are proud to be involved in the world of catfishing. Check out his full line of professional catfishing products at Team Catfish.

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