Catching Catfish at Diamond Teague in Washington DC


Cool November weather means voracious catfish. I was averaging four fish per hour, with six rods out.

Five of the six had my home-made Santee rigs on them. On the other pole I simply tied a 6/0 circle hook to the end of the line, and tied a 2-ounce pyramid sinker about 2 feet up the line. (Crude, but it works, although the hook-up rate is a little lower.)

The catfish hit on my chicken stink bait and some rotten bacon. The biggest of the bunch was 15.5 pounds and more than 30 inches. (See the photo below.) I had a much bigger fish hit and draw out line. He felt like a swimming tire—and slipped the hook after about 15 seconds, unfortunately.

As the video shows, when I go catfishing it tends to be cardio vascular exercise. Spreading rods out over a wide area enables one to locate the hot spots and to get exercise dashing from one end of the dock to the other.

Kosar catfish 11-17-2018

That is a 100 gallon cooler, mind you.

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Fly Fishing the Cuyahoga Falls River in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio


It is not a river runs through it, but hey—it is a river, and its health is coming back. I’ve written previously of this fishing dock, located at 1160 Front St. Cuyahoga Falls, OH 44221.

Here I had to work hard to nab a panfish, but it was worth it—certainly the kids cheered. Why it was so slow this time is beyond me, as small fish tend to school about the dock. Regardless, we had fun, and as the dun went down we got to watch a resident raccoon make her way along the shore.

Fishing Louse Point in the Hamptons

Louse Point is a little spit of land in the Springs section of East Hampton. It is a fine place to fish for young bluefish (AKA snappers), porgy, and more. At times it can  be a bit buggy, what with teeny buggers landing on one’s hands (which is annoying) or greenhead flies and deer flies. So consider wearing long pants and long sleeves, despite the heat. And bring bug spray, which helps. To get the gear you need to catch snappers and porgies, try the Tackle Shop in Amagansett.

Lake Medina Surprises Me with a 30″ Northern Pike

Lake Medina is a sizable, beautiful lake where you do not need a fishing license to enjoy its waters. The water is clear, the shored are rocky, and there’s a huge amount of space to shore fish. Kayaks can be put in on the northern side of the lake — although it is about a 500-foot haul from the parking lot just off Granger Road. (I have not clue what the southern side of the lake looks like. I never made it there.)

When we arrived around 9am, my eyes popped—a couple of largemouth bass a short distance from the shore! And bluegill and other panfish immediately began hitting worm on bobber.

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Yes, There Are Fish to Catch at Lock 3 in Akron!


This downtown Akron spot is in for the performance space, Children’s Museum, and bars. But Lock 3 has a canal (hence the name) and its still spots have fish: bass, bluegill, catfish, and more.

A bobber and worm works, as does a 2.5″ Gulp minnow on a small jig head. I caught this fish on my daughter’s pink-purple Zebco rod. No need for heavy line or tackle here. The water is no deeper than 4 feet. 8-pound line is a happy medium. (Yes, you could use 10-pound or 12-pound, or 4-pound or 6-pound, although the latter two might bust if a big bass hits it. You do have to pull the fish up 12-feet or so to get it out of the canal.)

Gulp 2.5″ minnow: https://amzn.to/2L9DMLA
1/4″ jigheads: https://amzn.to/2upatv7
8-pound monofilament: https://amzn.to/2uoY368

Akron Lock 3 Entry.jpg

Entryway to Lock 3 in Akron, Ohio.

How to catch longnose gar at the Tidal Basin

Kosar fishing gar 06-17-2018.jpg

A young longnose gar caught at the Tidal Basin on June 17, 2018. I lost two of them before I landed this one.

The longnose gar looks like a dinosaur. Or a gator crossed with a barracuda or somesuch lean, torpedo-shaped fish.

Fossils of gar-like fish date back 100 million years, and I cannot but help feel a bit of awe each time I see a gar cruising slowly a foot or two below the surface.

There are different types of gar in U.S. freshwaters, but here in DC it is the longnose gar that is most often found. This fish can grow to six feet in length, and their long mouths are filled with dozens of small teeth that remind me of carpet tacks.

Many folks catch gar on homemade lures made from nylon rope. I’ve not tried that technique, mostly because I am a little concerned about getting nylon fibers stuck in a gar’s mouth. But, if one is planning to take the gar home to cook, and they are apparently tasty, well, this is no matter. This approach also requires one to cast and retrieve, cast and retrieve, cast and retrieve….

And, to be entirely honest, I’ve learned another way that works and is easier.

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Shad fishing: Size matters

Kosar shad spoonsMidway through this season I took a tip from two old pro’s and switched my preferred shad rig to a shad spoon with a little split-shot a couple feet above it. Wow, whereas my darts got a little attention, the crazy fluttering spoon was hammered relentlessly. Both gold and nickel ones got equal love from the lust-crazed shad.

The first spoon I used was a Nungesser 20 (the one at the bottom of the photo above. The 20G-1 is gold and the 20N-1 is nickel. Click the links to buy them.) It worked great for a couple of weeks. Then it didn’t. I was baffled—donde est shad?

Frustrated, I swapped to a wee little spoon. (The one at the top of the photo.) WHAM! Suddenly the fish were hitting again. And these shad were much smaller than the hogs that had been hitting previously. So I learned something—the size of shad running can change, and one needs to adjust hook size accordingly. I also was delighted to find blueback herring hopping on these trim little shad spoons.

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