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The Best Tennessee Catfish Fishing

Aug 17, 2007
Because there are plenty of fine lakes and rivers all over Tennessee, catfish fishing is good throughout the state. Regardless of your location, you can find excellent fishing holes to reel in the trophy-sized cats. Beware, though, because the reason there is such an abundance of oversized cats in the state is because Tennessee catfish fishing is highly regulated.

While you don't have a limit as to the number of cats you take home after a good day of fishing, make sure that you never leave with more than one on any given day that exceeds 34 inches in length. Get ready to have a tough time deciding where to start - the rivers in Tennessee set a precedence for some of the best catfishing in the nation.

Tennessee is divided into four regions, with Region I being the western part of the state that borders the Mississippi River. You'll find that Tennessee catfish fishing in Region I produces some of the largest flatheads and blues in the country. Concentrate on the wingdams of the Mississippi to find those giants and pull in your trophy.

Look for areas with a strong current on top, slack water on the bottom, and deep holes that can range between 40 and 80 feet. Large specimens like to hide in such areas. If you wish to proceed with this type of fishing, you'll want to make sure you have seriously strong and heavy rods, reels, lines, and hooks because both the giant prey you seek and the current can make your catch a difficult one.

Use fresh fish, especially shad, to attract a bite, cut into strips or large chunks - after all, big fish like big meals and won't chase after small pieces of meat. The more blood and fluids the bait has, the better; flathead catfish are predators, not scavengers. In the Mississippi, if you would rather catch something smaller, aim for the shoreline and use night crawlers as your bait.

Tennessee catfish fishing in Region II, which consists of the central area of the state, is great at locations such as Woods Reservoir near Arnold Air Force Base. It is just under 4000 acres in size, which makes it large enough to spawn big fish and small enough to contain the catfish in an area that is easily worked by anglers.

The main species you'll find here are channel cats that can range easily between 24 and 28 inches and weight about 10 to 12 pounds. Here, try using chicken livers and, for the larger cats, fish in waters that are at least 50 feet deep.
About the Author
Dan Eggertsen is a fishing researcher and enthusiast who is commited to providing the best catfish fishing information possible. Get more information on Tennessee catfish fishing here: http://www.askcatfishfishing.com
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