June 06, 2012
Your little tykes have finally outgrown swim noodles. Good. That means they’re at the perfect age for jugging catfish. Here’s a way to recycle those foam noodles into a simple new twist on this time-honored summer pastime. Just remember to keep a noodle or two intact—you’ll need something to grab should you sink your boat with whiskerfish.
NOODLE NINJA Cut one 5-foot pool noodle into five 1-foot sections. (You’ll be able to store five noodle-jugs upright in a 5-gallon bucket—enough to keep you plenty busy.) Wrap one end of each with three wraps of duct tape; this will protect against line cuts. Use a large darning needle or crochet hook to string a 4-foot length of stout mono (60- to 100-pound) or trotline cord through the tape wrap. Tie off one end to a washer or bead, pull it snug, and tie a three-way swivel to the other end.
RIGGED AND READY To the swivel’s lower ring, attach a length of 20- to 40-pound mono that’s long enough to reach the bottom. To the third ring, tie in a 4-foot dropper line of 20-pound fluorocarbon and a circle hook. Anchor the rig with sufficient weight for the current—any old chunk of iron or half a brick will do. To reduce line twist while wrapping line around the noodle for storage, use a barrel swivel near the weight.
CAT FOOD A small live bluegill, large wads of nightcrawler, or cut bait will catch just about any catfish.
GLOWING RESULTS If you fish at night, run a strip of reflective tape around the noodle on the opposite end from the line. It’ll show up in a flashlight beam.
CATFISH RODEO For a complete blast, use a 4-ounce weight on the bottom and free-float all the noodles as you monitor the action from the boat. Nothing says summer like chasing down a bunch of catfish noodles gone wild.
Click Here to learn more about tips like this in The Total Outdoorsman Manual.