Re: what kind of rig for channel cats in strong current?
One of my favorite rigs in fast current off a dam face is a bobber rig... Big bobber helps see it and helps keep it floating in the current. A few inches below the bobber is a weight attatched to a barrel swivel the weight needs to be big enough to keep about 3/4 of the bobber submerged. (remember big bobber) also on the swivel should be a leader about 2-3 ft or longer depending on the spillway Im fishing, with a 1/0 to 3/0 circle hooks for channels or blues, 4/0-10/0 for flatheads or if the water is known to have big blues. Shad, suckers, carp, bluegills, or fathead rigged on the circle hook.
The best way to fish it is to cast it as close to the spillway as possible, the bobber will hold the bait in current like it was shot out the spillway... it really doesnt matter if you rig the bait live, dead, or cutbait because all make it through the output of the dam. The weight is very important as it will slow the bobber down, if your bobber is shooting back in the current you either dont have enough weight or you dont have a big enough bobber and enough weight. Unlike regular bobber fishing you dont want to set the hook as soon as you see it go under, it might just be the current... so give it a sec reel in any slack and set the hook... the fight will be insane because of the current make sure you know where you want to take the fish and try to get him out of the current as soon as possible, I have hooked numerous fish that I never even turned while fishing at John Martin they just took me around the bend and down the Ark tell I spooled or broke off, so its important to get the early jump on them. I've used this setup in Nebraska, North Carolina, Oklahoma, and Colorado works pretty much anywhere.
There's a fine line between fishing and just standing on the shore like an idiot.
Here's to Tight Lines, Bent Rods, and Screamin Reels.... FISH ON!