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Muskie456

Channel Cats

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I am wondering if there are that many channel cats in the MN from 371 to past 169 bridge. I am new to chasing cats but have spent exstensive time on rivers of all sizes. I understand how they work and where fish genrally hang out and can't get bit. I have only been out a couple times but it has been evenings into dark and fished numorouse spots that look great(Current seams, back eddies, deep holes, river mouths, big snag areas, slack water)I got advise from Moores as far as stink bait goes and have fished cut bait along side the stink bait(with a buddy)and literally haven't had an eat. Are the channels not in that area? Are there not that many of them?Are they spawning? is the water to high? Is it purely a night bite? Any nugget of info would be great.

Thanks

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the Minnesota has channels in it's entire length...

Current seams and snags are good places to look. personally I steer clear of the storebought stink bait, and go with cut sucker, cut bullhead, (sometimes live suckers and bullies for the biggest channels) and in a pinch, chicken livers, uncooked shrimp that have been left in the sun for a few hours, lastly crawlers.

I've caught them day and night, although it can pick up at dusk a little more.

You are in the right place for catfish chat, these guys on here are awesome for lending a helping hand or nugget of information.

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There's alot of channel's in that stretch of the river. It's almost kinda weird you haven't even had a bite. Dusk/dawn have been the best times for me, but they also bite during the day. Not sure about the channels spawing right now though. It's might be due to the higher water levels, which are dropping everyday and should be at normal levels soon. I personally would use more cutbait then stink bait, but it seems as though you've got all the spots I would fish. I like to fish snags during the daylight hrs and travel route in primetime. I say hang in there sometimes cattin can get a lil tough, I'm sure you'll hook into some very soon.

Have a fun and safe 4th

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I haven't caught anything on stink bait since I moved to MN. Cut bait is king around here, as far as I can tell. Frogs (live, hooked through the rear leg) are awesome, too, if you can find them.

Mr Special sounds like he fishes the same way I do, as far as location. Cover in the daytime, travel routes and feeding areas at night. Are you fishing close in to shore? I seem to do best this time of year when I'm casting from shore, and fishing 4 to 8 feet of water, adjacent to some type of current break or cover.

My best advice in this situation is to keep moving. If you sit in a spot for more than 20 minutes to a half hour without a bite, move on to the next spot.

Sounds like you're doing it right. Some days just aren't that great. Sometimes I'll catch dozens, the next day I'll get skunked. But it sure beats watching TV.

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Thanks a lot guys for the info.

Can the snag areas have current on them or is it purley slack water snags?

This might be completely elementry but with cut bait are you slicing it horizontal or vertical to the sucker?

I have been fishing with medium sized treble hooks because I want to be reeling down on the fish sooner than later(when I get a bite)is this the correct thinking? I really have no intrest in killing them so I do not want to gut hook any. I have a nice soft tipped 7'6" rod so i won't bump fish when they do pick it up.

Do i need to fish with mono leaders vs. superbraid? How long of a leader to my swivel 6"? I figured they pick it up off the bottom so short was better but they also might like it if it lifts of the bottom a little bit too.Is the leader longer when fishing live bait and if so 24"-30"?

I may be over thinking this but i don't think so. They are teaching me that this isn't a slam dunk. Thanks again

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A lot of times you don't have to go deep. I've caught them in less than 2 fow. Just enough water and murkynest so you can't see them swimming in such shallows. Yep that's where a bobber and a foot to foot half setting of bait. It's almost a dumb luck kind of fishing, but it works.

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You got all the ingredients. You just need to continue to work it.

As a tip. They guys posted some great locations. Now that the water level is dropping and they are starting on the back side of the spawn they will start to become more aggressive.

They are called channels for a reason. Don't be afraid to toss the cut in the middle of the river. It will get hit there and most likely by a nice fat one.

Keep working it....good luck

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Hi Muskie,

Welcome to the dark side of catfishing. A lot of us like circle hooks for catch and release. The most popular method is to just leave your rod in the holder and let the fish hook himself. Nearly every time they end up being hooked in the corner of the mouth.

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Muskie456,

Try using bait hooks 4/0 to 8/0 and circles the same size will get you started. I dont suggest using treble hooks (check the fishing regs). As for as location and presentation is concerned you are on the right path. All i have to say is run and gun, 20 or 30 min and move.

The guys on here will give you just enough info to make you dangerous.

Good luck

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I would be fishing channels in front of snags or on sandbars that are not getting blasted by the full force of the current right now.(If I didn't have to work so much)

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