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DRIFT FISHING on the Ohio River near Cincinnati

May 25th.  I met Randy at the Cincinnati Public Landing around 06:30 for my first DRIFT FISHING experience. Once he had the boat in the water he headed up river to net some Shad for bait.  Once he had the bait we went to our first spot to fish.   It was on the Ky. Side below the I-275 Bridge.  Had our lines in the water at 07:35 not much current, water was clear.


We had a total of 6 rods out 3 on the bow, my 2 on the back, and one off to the side in the back.  With the lack of current Randy had to use the trolling motor to move the boat.    We then had 2 snags which forced us to cut the lines and re-tie.  Randy had 2 depth finders fired up, one on the bow so he could keep tabs on the change of   the river bottom as he adjusted the reels on the 3 front rods.  Then at 08:00 Randy hooked the 1st fish of the day, a nice 5.7 pound channel cat.  The fresh cut shad had worked just fine.  

 AT 08:30 the dark rain clouds rolled in, with the wind blowing right up the river.   We got all our lines in for the white caps were getting bigger by the minute.  Headed for the Little Miami River and at least got out of the wind.    Both of us had rain gear on so rain was not a major problem.   The steady rain lasted for around 30 minutes then we got back on the Ohio. 

  Next spot was on the Ohio side just above Schmidt’s Ramp.  No luck there so he powered up and moved down river a little way just across from Dayton Ky. by the big crane.   The sun was back out and Randy started getting a bite.   At 12:45 Randy boated the 2nd fish of the day a small 2 pound channel cat.   Then Randy's rod got hit at 13:00, this was a blue cat of 7.5 pounds.   Once again the wind roared so headed for the Licking River.

The Licking was just dead NO current at all, so the trolling motor had a workout. We fished up above the 12th. Street Bridge for around 20 minutes; no luck so headed back to the Ohio.   Started drifting again just below the Water Front restaurant on the Ky. Side.  Just a little up river breeze at that time.   Boat drifted all the way down to the I-75 bridge when we decide to call it a day.   We were both kind of worn out by fighting the wind and rain during this trip so called it a day at 15:00.  At least Randy did get some fish into the boat. 

I headed home with a lot of  new knowledge about how to drift fish.   It does require a good dependable trolling motor and depth finder for starters.   You really have to be alert for the changes in depth to reduce the hang up on snags.   I have been told to get big blues that drift fishing is the key.   It will require me to go out on more trips to feel comfortable with this type of fishing.


It does require a lot of skill to handle a boat and all those rods especially when you have a big catfish hooked.


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