Late fall is my favorite time of the year to chase blue cats. Looking back through my log books I see this is when I’ve caught my three largest fish. When the water temperature dips below 55 degrees I hang up my bumping rod and dust off my anchor.
In my opinion anchor fishing requires being proficient with electronics. This is especially true in the fall when drastic weather changes drive the bait and the fish to different depths and current speeds.
In high water like we have now I like to find a section of river with a series of dikes that are grouped tightly together. I will start scanning down through all of them until I start marking catfish. I might reposition the boat multiple times to be able to hit all areas inside a box or trail dike. Don’t let a bunch of Silver or Bighead carp keep you from fishing an area! This time of year, I’m still using fresh frozen skipjack, fresh bait is always best if you have it readily available.
One last thing I would like to touch on is safety. Wear your life jacket, dress accordingly, pack an extra set of clothes in a dry bag, let someone know where you are going, and call them once you are off the water. If you plan for the worst, you’ll always be prepared.
Editor’s Note: Wade is a frequent tournament and recreational angler. The photo captured him on the Missouri River last November. At the time this 83-pound beast was his personal best. About a month later he improved his PB to 90 pounds, also from the Missouri.