How to Catch Catfish from a Canoe

The canoe is pointed on both ends and the occupants use paddles to propel through the water. This means that you don’t have a noisy motor to scare the catfish away which is another reason so many anglers prefer this form of transportation.

Fishing from a canoe is different from fishing from a boat. It’s recommended that you don’t go catfish fishing in a canoe alone because accidents do happen. It’s best to have two or three people with you even if you use two different vessels so you can look out for each other. If the canoe tips over you may need assistance. You should also let family members know where you are going and when you plan to return for safety issues.

Tips for Catfish Fishing In a Canoe

When fishing for catfish you need to search for areas where the baitfish are plentiful. This is where the hot spots will be because all species of fish tend to gather where there is plenty of food available for them to eat. Dark green and black spots on the water are a good indication of chlorophyll and phytoplankton which translates into a great place to fish as well.

Follow all of the safety rules when you go out on the water in a canoe to catch catfish. Wear the proper clothing and always wear your life vast. After all you never know when you might land that giant cat and it’s always possible to get pulled or dumped overboard. Even if you are a good swimmer it’s still a good idea to wear a vest

Check on the weather before you head out. This will help you decide if conditions are good enough for being out on a canoe. It will also give you an idea of what mood the catfish will be in because they do respond differently during different weather conditions.

It’s also vital that you know something about the area where you plan to fish. If you are not very familiar with the water get a map and study it in advance. You will need to avoid rough waters especially if you don’t have lots of experience with canoeing.

Be Prepared

If you want to catch catfish from a canoe one secret to remember is that a good catfish fisherman is always prepared. Go over all of your gear to make sure you have everything beforehand.

You don’t want to get out on the water and discover you left the bait or your favorite fishing rod behind. You will need a good strong rod that won’t break while the catfish is struggling to get away. It’s also recommended that you take extra bait hooks line and a pair of pliers and a good sharp knife. However keep in mind that you don’t have lots of room on the canoe so don’t take items that you don’t need. Save the space for useful gear

Not only do you need to make sure you have the gear needed for fishing but it’s recommended that you also check the canoe before you go out. It’s mandatory that you have two paddles and two lines which are the bow and stern line. Store extra rope and an extra paddle if possible somewhere in the canoe just in case you run into problems.

Having an extra paddle could save you lots of headaches in the long run Attach a whistle to your vest or anything that you can use to get attention from another boater in case of an emergency.

Keep any important papers stored inside a waterproof compartment to keep them from being damaged. Have a repair kit on board and take along a first aid kit. These could prove to be very useful.

Above all the main thing that you need to know about a canoe when you are fishing is where to sit without making it tip over. You need to be careful when you are trying to reel in a catfish because the fight they put up might tip you over. It takes very little movement to tip a canoe and you certainly couldn’t get much fishing done if you end up in the water the majority of time.

Check on the weather before you head out. This will help you decide if conditions are good enough for being out on a canoe. It will also give you an idea of what mood the catfish will be in because they do respond differently during different weather conditions.

It’s also vital that you know something about the area where you plan to fish. If you are not very familiar with the water get a map and study it in advance. You will need to avoid rough waters especially if you don’t have lots of experience with canoeing.

To get the full “How to Catch Catfish from a Canoe” article you’ll need to download it here.


Dan Eggertsen is a fellow catfish fishing enthusiast to the point of obsession. :) He's been providing solid advice on catfish fishing since 2004.

One Response to “How to Catch Catfish from a Canoe”

  1. pancho farias says:

    Just caught my second 50 lb blue cat from my canoe. Truly enjoy the challenge !

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