Catfish Basics #044 – Tournament Tips – Wanda Bennett Barner, Wheatland, Missouri
Everyone should remember that fishing is not catching! Ninety-five percent of your time in the boat is fishing, so I recommend you have a fishing partner you enjoy spending time with.
In the boat I recommend that each partner has duties that they are responsible for. For example, I reel in all the fish and my partner (husband) is responsible for netting the fish. He tells me I’m “no net man” and a lot of good fish are lost at the boat.
Have your boat organized the same way each trip. When things get exciting, you may not have time to look for an item.
Always match your equipment to the size fish you expect to catch. Its fun for you that way, and good for the fish.
Don’t be afraid to try something different, like rattles, planer boards, or flashers–they might work.
As far as bait goes I always remember what Phil King says. “It’s easier to list what a catfish will not eat than what he will.” But usually bait common to the water you are fishing works best. Here on Truman Lake in Missouri, shad will out produce any other bait. Go to Wheeler Lake in Alabama and you want skipjack. If you are unsure about a new area, ask a local angler or bait shop. Most catfisherman are more than happy to share information.
More than anything else, the best tip I have is to have fun!