Roosevelt Lake Flathead Catfish Fishing Techniques

A terrific bait to use to lure the flathead to your line is the white pilchard. The best way to position this bait to attract the flathead is to put it on a 2 hook gang with a short trace. The white pilchard is an amazing bait to use to lure the flathead. Even after it has been frozen, the white pilchard is firm and can remain intact even after you have cast your fishing line many, many times.

The white pilchard will not fall apart and come off the hook. The sinker size, on the other hand, is not as important as the bait.

Whether you fish for flatheads at Roosevelt Lake or somewhere else, there are some basic techniques involved you if you want to lure a flathead to your line. First and foremost, you must have patience. Fortunately for fisherman at Roosevelt Lake, fish are plentiful so the odds are in your favor that you will be successful. It is beneficial to fish during the warm months of the year.

Again, Roosevelt Lake is ideal because the weather is warm year round. If you hope to snag a trophy flathead, fish in large lakes, not creeks, ponds or small lakes. If you are at Roosevelt Lake, the size is in your favor so you have taken care of the first three techniques that are recommended for luring a flathead.

Look for flatheads

Flatheads sit on the bottom and rarely move, the lure must pass practically in front of the flathead’s nose to be noticed. Light gear with lures is best and the trick is to cast and allow the lure to sink to the bottom. The lure is then retrieved with a jerky rod action, allowing the lure to skip along the bottom and disturb the sand, giving an appearance as a bait fish and attracting the attention of the flathead. Too slow a speed and the action of a fish is not emulated, too fast and the flathead will ignore it.

The correct spinning tackle should be a light spinning road about 2 meters long with a small thread line reel with line about 3-5 kilogram (6 – 11 lbs) breaking strain. The lure should be any that has a good action with a slow retrieval speed. The lure must also represent a source of food popular with the flathead in a given area. Mostly that would mean a lure similar to a pilchard, or anchovy, with a long slender body. Silver is more than likely the best color but other colors, even though not fish-like in appearance to the human eye, have been known to work, such as yellow.

Flathead must be handled with care. They have 2 sharp and poisonous spines at each side of the head and although the venom is not fatal, it is enough to cause a very nasty and infected wound. A quick flap of the flathead’s head and those spines can be driven into the soft flesh of an angler’s hand before they realize it. A good method is to grasp the fish firmly with an old rag or gloved hand and turn the fish over. The thumb and forefinger of the other hand can then be thrust into the gill flaps. The poisonous barbs are then out of harm’s way and the fish can be de-hooked.

To get the full “Roosevelt Lake Flathead Catfish Fishing Techniques” 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.

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