John's Journal...

Creekbank Catfish for Laid-Back Fun

Day 3: How to Prepare for a Catfishing and Learning Adventure with Young Anglers with Outdoor Writer J. Wayne Fears

Editor’s Note: A lot of fun times, delicious eating and good friends can be enjoyed when fishing for catfish with trotlines, set hooks, a campfire and a night spent on a river.

Click for Larger ViewJ. Wayne Fears and his two boys, Chris and Steve, went on a creekbanking adventure with my son, JJ, and me. Fears always has prided himself on being an expert backwoodsman. He is really a 19th-century mountain man forced to live in a society not of his own making. The old skills and virtues are his stock in trade. And, like J. Wayne, I believe that our American outdoor heritage should be passed-on to young people.

Click for Larger View“I’ll get my Dutch oven and make up some bannock – pioneer bread,” J. Wayne planned. “We’ll take a few potatoes and some other stuff for us to eat. You handle the catfish chores, and we’ll show these boys how to have a good time creekbanking.” When I told JJ that we were going fishing with J. Wayne and his boys, he immediately started a rapid-fire succession of questions. “What do we need to take? What kind of fish are we going to catch? How long will we be gone? What kind of bait are we going to get? Can I take my knife? Do I need my tackle box?”

Jug-fishing for cats must have been invented for small boys and grown men who like to keep a lot of things happening at one time. Remembering the days when I once dug worms out of the chicken manure pile at the back of the barn, cut-down cane on the creekbanks, and trapped minnows in homemade minnow baskets to prepare for a fishing trip, I realized that half of the fun of fishing is getting ready. Click for Larger ViewSo, every day after school, JJ, his sister Kate, and I raided all the laundromats within a 5-mile radius of our house. Digging through the garbage, we hunted only the very-best jugs. One-quart bleach bottles were our prime targets, but we did liberate a few detergent bottles with handles extending from the necks. Click for Larger ViewNext, we tied strings on the jugs, attached the hooks and the weights, rolled twine around the jugs and taped the hooks to the jugs. On the night of the trip, all the gear was loaded into our van. When we got to the backwater slough where we were to camp, we all gathered firewood while J. Wayne prepared our food. “Now I’ll get the grease hot in the Dutch oven and you boys put out the jugs, “J. Wayne told us.

Editor’s Note: Due to very-specific regulations of trotlines, set-poles, jugs, etc., anyone who wishes to participate in recreational fishing by these methods is strongly advised to first familiarize themselves with the state fishing regulations dealing with these specific techniques.

Tomorrow: Nighttime Fishing for Catfish with Outdoorsman J. Wayne Fears

Check back each day this week for more about "Creekbank Catfish for Laid-Back Fun "

Day 1: Dreaming About Catfishing Full-Time
Day 2: Fishermen Lose Their Dream to Reality of Fishing for Catfish Fulltime
Day 3: How to Prepare for a Catfishing and Learning Adventure with Young Anglers with Outdoor Writer J. Wayne Fears
Day 4: Nighttime Fishing for Catfish with Outdoorsman J. Wayne Fears
Day 5: Have Fun Using Set-Poles and Limb-Lines to Fish for Summertime Catfish

ALL CONTENT PROTECTED UNDER THE DIGITAL MILLENIUM COPYRIGHT ACT. Content theft, either printed or electronic is a federal offense.


Entry 617, Day 3