Drifting for Catfish at Night

Derek Bierman   Wednesday, May 10, 2006 11:04 AM

When fishing at night on a boat, try using a jig or a Lindy Rig while drifting across the width of the lake instead jumping from hole to hole.

My brother and I were fishing a few holes in some trees on the western end of Willow Creek Lake in Nebraska using my flat bottom boat. On our way back with no luck, we noticed the old road on the depth finder that was flooded over when the lake was created. Usually this is a good place for Walleye, however we decided to drift from the south to the north while over this old road. A breeze blowing from the southwest started pushing us more west than we anticipated, and we found ourselves heading toward the north dock.

My brother used a jig and worm and I, a Lindy Rig and worm. About midway across the lake we found what we were looking for... By the time we hit the north dock we had two 6 lb channel cats and one 8 lb. We shot back across the water toward the south dock about 50 yards from shore. We both stuck with our current rigs and let the breeze push us across the lake. Again, about halfway we landed a 7 lb, 8 1/2 lb, and a whopping 11 lb channel cat. This all happened over the course of an hour.

For the next 3 hours we experimented with leaches, worms, and stink bait (not sure of the brand, but it came in what looked like a peanut butter jar). Using the same drifting pattern across the lake we caught about 17 in the weight category from 5 lb to 11 lbs. We turned loose all but 4 of the 6 lb cats (not wanting to eat anything bigger or taking home more than our fair share). In the spirit of the movie "Grumpy Old Men" we decided (after taking a few pictures) to release that 11 lb "Catfish Hunter".

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re: Drifting for Catfish at Night
12/28/2006 6:29:59 PM  Stacy says,

My husband and I fish Willow like this. Really strange how it always works between 11:00 and 1:00. Then you might as well pack it in cause nothing will bit the rest of the night.

re: Drifting for Catfish at Night
12/28/2006 6:31:34 PM  Stacy says,

I mean't bite not bit :)

re: Drifting for Catfish at Night
4/30/2012 9:13:13 PM  Guillermo says,

I have used chicken liervs before, but I didn't let them thaw out all the way after being frozen, and they really fell apart not staying on the hook at all. I would advise buying them just before heading out as I will try to do for next time. Using some sort of catfish attractant (like stink bait stuff) would likely help, if you can tolerate the smell.Anything else I can add would be that fish generally like to linger near any fallen trees/branches/shady nooks in the water, just watch for snags.Good luck and I hope this helps. I'm just speaking from personal experiences.

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