Cats under Ice

In colder water, there is something to be said for fishing up off of the bottom a bit, rather than right on the bottom – as often seems more appropriate for cats. The use of a tightline, with the lowest sideline on it attached at about 24″ above the sinker, or, using a light bait with a sliding ledger (slipweight), so that the bait can free-float in the water, has been shown to produce some hefty returns. However, where schools of cats are concerned, they can be found congregating at many different levels in the water, from almost totally bottomed, to just under the ice, depending on currents, food, light and other factors. This is where (shudder) a good electronic fish finder may be an asset, as it will help you to choose the depth to fish at, as well as the general location.

If you are keeping your catch for the day, you may want to open up the gills of the fish, and hang them in the water, head-down, to help bleed them out, and keep them from freezing, just yet. This practice may help to attract more cats to your locale, too.
Even without the aid of modern electronics, with a bit of experience, the mysteries of catfish will reveal themselves, and you will find that making a good-sized catch from under the ice isn’t all that unlikely, at all.

To get the full “Cats under Ice” 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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