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Shack

Is It Going To Be A Slow Year?

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Let's face it, things are slow in the FM cat world right wink

We are seeing a couple nice channels just starting to come in and one bigger flat from MW (not counting crazy's flat caught while fishing for eye's down south. Still a nice fish), but sure not anything one has come to expect seeing from the cat guys involved in this forum.

I know they are die-hards and fish the river like retired couples hit the casino, but these images just do not look right for these guys grin

001-2.jpg

001-4.jpg

wst.jpg

Normally these fish would be thrown back and no images would be taken. Heck, some of the bait they use is bigger grin Expecially when your are used to this:

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I know many others are putting in a bung load of time right now and coming up short. Seeing the lack of monsters and the slow reports could possibly make some wonder if this year is going to be a slow year frown? The water temps are right; the water is not too low for this time of year and the air temps along with other mother nature stuff is starting to line up.

"What gives" some would think confused Are flatheads singing a different tune this year in their patterns and predictability? If you have been pounding the river the last month and coming up short, this could/can even make a die-hard question "what the heck am I doing" and maybe even cause some to loose interest in fishing for cats.

Well grin, I did do some research and relearned why this year I am taking the turtle approach, verses having a hand full of trips down and almost no fish to show for it. Very interesting to say the least and here are seven quick examples of what the month of May held last year. Note:look at the posting start date of each thread wink

Example Thread One

Example Thread Two

Example Thread Three

Example Thread Four

Example Thread Five

Example Thread Six

Example Thread Seven

I know I missed some and you starting looking after 6/1/2008, the posts become even more thick with good sized flat being caught. wink

Man I want to get out this weekend, so I looked back to fuel my fire to do so from what was going on exactly one year ago this weekend. To be straight forward with you, there was nothing going on that I could find wink

I know this is a different year from last year, but this shows the time to shine should start up in the next couple weeks. It could be this weekend, but the later part of May is the time to hit the river full bore (IMO).

So if you’re feeling down about a streak of skunk trips or small fish, just wait for a couple more weeks. IMO, right now is the latter part of the down time to make the wife happy, get stuff done around the house, but to fully instill that in a couple weeks the "game on" time is going down. That way there should be no concerns wink I know there are some exceptions to the rule, like some having extraordinary wives and girl friends, no wives or serious girl friends, in a great situation where a "quick" trip to the river can be had with out notice and I am sure a couple who could care less what their wives and girlfriends think wink Also I looked back at some of my posts from this time a year ago. I had about 4 or 5 trips down to the river before the bite was “hot”, with no luck. For me, with last year’s gas prices, that was easily $60-$80 just in fuel per trip. I could have waited and bought an awesome custom rod with the best catt'in reel and done it up with the most expensive braid frown

With hearing and knowing some guys who have been "burned out" on the river, I have found planning my trips around the "peak" time(s) to maximize my potential has really started to sink in. Time on the water has no exceptions, but trying to minimize the "wasted" time on the water is key (IMO). It is like tossing a river rig in with a bully for flats on the MN April 1st, with water temps in the upper 30's and low 40's right after ice out. Sure, you might get something, but the chances of finding a feeding flathead of any size is like a 1,000,000 to 1. We have learned this and what I have been trying to do to is break this down even further. Like a spot within a spot wink

So, the moral of this post is, keep your chin up if things have been slow for ya. They are only going to get better smile

Good luck to those who go this weekend, but I am starting to think we have a week or two before the big'uns start rolling in. I would love (really would smile ) for you guys to prove me wrong though grin

Good luck!

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I have been really busy this spring, and I have about 5% of the time on the water this year as I did last year at this time. I think last years bite was a little early compared to most years. This year is more of a average type year for fish, and water temps. Have patients they will come!

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Shack, I would be willing to bet that within a week or a bit more, those pictures will start to appear. The water temps are just starting to get in the right zone and then it will be game on.

Hold onto that rod as it will begin soon. The channels have been strong and the flats will follow.

Have faith, those big flathead fisherman will get them soon.

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As much as it might make sense to try and time it Shack there is nothing better than seeing the beginning and the end (as well as the middle). If it weren’t for the “diehards” out there every night trying to figure out a pattern and then giving reports nobody would really know (other than going out and trying yourself).

I can pretty much guarantee there are a few getting numbers of big fish just about every night right now. They are taking advantage of the bite and keeping the chatter to a minimum to keep the lurkers at bay. You sure can’t blame them, especially the shore fisherman as those shore spots can be hard to come by.

Historically, Memorial weekend has been great fishing and a very good gauge to go by. However NOTHING can replace time on the water.

If time is a hard thing to come by, yes I’d probably wait until the end of May to go gangbusters and the best Month of the year for lower MN river is probably June.

For me, it’s the love of the river and not so much about how many or how big of fish hit the bottom of the boat.

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I can pretty much guarantee there are a few getting numbers of big fish just about every night right now. They are taking advantage of the bite and keeping the chatter to a minimum to keep the lurkers at bay. You sure can’t blame them, especially the shore fisherman as those shore spots can be hard to come by.

Well, they must not be part of the KOTC then grin, unless they caught them in the last 72 hours wink

Originally Posted By: KOTC Rules
In the picture there shall be a control item present and in clear view. This year an official logo will represent the control item. The logo MUST be in clear view in the picture. As the administrator, I reserve the right to allow or reject any questionable photos or fish. All entries must be submitted within 72 hrs of catching the fish.

Even at the BPCL last weekend I was able to talk with a good amount of the guys at the meeting and no one seemed to have any reports of big fish confused.

Dtro, I trust you man grin, but you can not tell me that there is a person(s) who are involved in this cat forum and the KOTC that have gotten a 30-40lb fish or bigger and has not posted an image or submitted it the KOTC?? I could be wrong, but I would at least think a large jump in the numbers should have happened or at least some kind of blurp. No mention of where and when, but just an image and a "look what I got"? That or some double talking in posts about this going on.

The “jist” of my post was by no means to say “your nuts for being on the river now” and I am sorry if anyone gets that from it. The “jist” I was trying to get out is good things are coming and for those who need to, start getting your plans in order wink. Plus those new to catfishing and have been having a hard time finding fish or any of size do not give up hope. The proof is in the past posts wink

Like I said in my first post “prove me wrong” grin

For those who are out their getting big fish right now, I give you big props. smile

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Shack I would bet money on the fact of a few 40lb fish being caught right now. wink

The Catfish board here and the KOTC, while active, only represents a small percentage of the guys on the river.

Speaking of the KOTC, it's getting pretty popular and you might be seeing some entries from a certain guide that recently had a quadruple on camera wink

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......and for those that want to wait, you could possibly be missing out on one of the best Channel bites of the year going on right now wink

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Shack I would bet money on the fact of a few 40lb fish being caught right now. wink

The Catfish board here and the KOTC, while active, only represents a small percentage of the guys on the river.

I'll second this..... Shack as you continue to broaden your Catfish network you will learn that there are lots of people who could care less about playing on the websites. There are lots that do play and don't tell as well.

I will also say... that I do agree with you in part. Its been a really busy spring for me also. My clock is ticking and I'm feeling the rush/urge to get everything primed to start hitting it hard in the next few weeks. Some of us are lucky enough to be able to work the season in full, others have been doing it long enough to have the patience and hit it when they think it will be productive.

Its cool to see the time line from last year compared to now. Lets take it back one more year and then you start seeing the pattern.

Great job pulling up the facts and vids.

thanks

Larry

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I will reinnerate my exceptions to the rule from my first post again grin.

Quote:
I know there are some exceptions to the rule, like some having extraordinary wives and girl friends, no wives or serious girl friends, in a great situation where a "quick" trip to the river can be had with out notice and I am sure a couple who could care less what their wives and girlfriends think

I will also add in the people who have heavy work schedules. For instance let's say "Frank" grin works 6 long hour days a week and does not have much time left over each day (or the 7th) to get out fishing. Frank loves to catfish for flatheads, but never has the time. This year Frank is lucky enough to have some vacation time built up and would like to spend it going for flatheads on the MN or Miss up near the cities. Would you say that Frank should take that time off right now or wait 2-3 weeks to better his chances at a large catfish confused?

In my case, I wanted to go tomorrow night. I have some stuff to do during the day that would not put me on the water till about 8:30-9:00pm. Then what is the next day? Mother's Day wink. My wife’s family has a large get-together planned for around noon. I can go fishing, but I know there will be some protest from my wife about me being out all night and sleeping in right till we have to go, thus not being my chipper self at my in-laws house. Will that happen? No, but I do know she will think this. This is why I did the research today on years past for this weekend and started this post. If I go tomorrow night, is the “bite” going to be worth it? Even going back past 08, the info and posting say the chances are not good. Although I might still go, but I could bank the trip, make my wife happy and gain maybe 2-3 “have fun dear and catch a big one” trips down the road. Is IT Worth Going Right Now confused?

I did not think up this theory, nor did the brunt of it come from reading past posts. It has been brought up by "guys in the know" and even recall a conversation I had last year on the water with someone as to the effect of “If I could take a month off to fish for these big girls, it would start from this date and end this date” whistle and let's just say todays date was weeks out from the start date wink. Plus some have said this was going to be a learning curve year from previous years, but this was late last winter and I see things have changed up a bit.

This thread was not started to target the fisherman who know nothing about FM or for the guys on the water all the time down south. It was to give insight to the average Joe living up by the cities, who has to plan his trips accordingly. If he/she has only a couple chances to get out in the next month, should this weekend be one of them wink?

That is it, I am going now! grin

Good luck to the guys who do get out smile and like I said, "prove me wrong" and let's see some images of a 40+ or a mid 30's this weekend cool.

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I caught one last night Shack but I did not have my camera along. I didn't want to say anything as a few others know where I was fishing.

44x32, and no KOTC as I did not have the camera with as I thought the big ones were not feeding.

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Although I might still go, but I could bank the trip, make my wife happy and gain maybe 2-3 “have fun dear and catch a big one” trips down the road. Is IT Worth Going Right Now confused?

The politics of fishing!

The Walleye opener is a lousy time to be on the water anyway. If you are certain you can pick up the two or three free passes for future dates, I'd say bag the trip. Everybody wins!

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44x32, and no KOTC as I did not have the camera with as I thought the big ones were not feeding.

Others play but don't tell?!?!?!? I'm calling fish story unless a witness steps forward with a confirmation of the fish...... and..... the spot. grin

Tom........ You got that 600watt light in your boat for filming on a 6 ft pole and NO CAMERA!!!!!!!!

Next time I see you, your gonna get 2 for flinching if this is the real deal. If it is for real..... congrats on the catch. wink

But....bummer on the KOTC...... that might have been your title shot.

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Glad to see I got you going LFC. smile

Thats was for Shack really. wink

There is always a camera in the boat for those doubters out there. I know you are not one of them Flatcaster.

I guess I cannot continue to fib you Larry. When I go out on Monday, I'll try to get a photo of the big one, thats if I get a hook in it.

Good luck to you Larry if your fishing this weekend. That bigger flat will happen soon and it would be nice to catch it before that WWG and that Dtro guy get it. For the time they spend on the river, they are due. My money is on their boat.

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Tom, if you had gotten one like that last night, we would have woken up to a "Ya Who Mountain" video this morning grin

Quote:
That bigger flat will happen soon and it would be nice to catch it before that WWG and that Dtro guy get it. For the time they spend on the river, they are due. My money is on their boat.

That's what I am saying grin Unless they are holding a tight lip to some big ones they have caught, if the big ones are rolling (IMO) they are going to be the first ones to get them grin.

Now if I want an August time flat, just follow the catcatcher1 wink

I know the drill and what's up grin If Dtro and WWG are not getting big ones, I would have to see some hard proof from someone else as to the big ones starting in wink

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I can't believe I'm sitting at home tonight. Rain I can take, cold I can take, but I just stepped out on my deck and it's cold AND rainy with not a lot of relief in sight.

I guess I get to deposit a weekend night into the savings account.

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Good point, but she's not really excited after finding about 50 ticks on ourselves the other day.

Unless of course we can actually find some. frown

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I should have known better Tom..... You had me going for minute. Way to yank my chain. crazy

We all know its early....The fish will start hitting quick.

We can use a little rain, the creeks could use a boost.

Shack... were all busy but we have all summer and its just starting to get rolling.

As much as I hate to admit... every year the skirt gets a little longer and I find that I'm not as motivated to get out till the weather is nice and warm.

Props to the guys who are into the cold weather thing..... I overdid it the last few years, I figure I'll skate for the next couple. I know when the kid gets a little older he will be bustin his old mans jewels to get out as early and as much as possible.

I'll justify it in my mind as pacing myself..... smirk

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As much as I hate to admit... every year the skirt gets a little longer and I find that I'm not as motivated to get out till the weather is nice and warm. smirk

Thats funny.

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