Where to Go Hillbilly Handfishin', Places to Go Noodling
Go Handfishing for Catfish!
So You Want to go Hillbilly Handfishing?
Since I've written my Hillbilly Handfishin' hub, I've gotten many comments and questions as to how and where one can go handfishing. In my original hub, I didn't provide any information on how someone can engage in this redneck rite of passage, but in this hub I will give you all actual references and contact information so that you can go on your own hillbilly handfishing excursion!
The first thing you'll need to know is that handfishing (or noodling, whatever you'd like to call it) is not legal in every state. I know, can you believe the nerve of making such an awesome sport illegal? Noodling is legal in the following states: Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Wisconsin. More and more states are moving to make noodling or hillbilly handfishing legal, such as Texas, but for whatever reason many states will fine someone up to $500 if caught noodling. Personally, I don't think it should be illegal anywhere! Do some research on whether or not the state of your choice is indeed a noodling-friendly state...you don't want to get caught with your hand in a hole!
Contact Information for Noodling Guides & Places to Go Handfishing
In Oklahoma, you can contact many noodling guides to take you out and show you the ropes of hillbilly handfishing. In particular, if you'd like to go noodling or hillbilly handfishing with the guys from Animal Planet's Hillbilly Handfishing, you will want to contact Big Fish Adventures, LLC. Their website contact page is here. Unfortunately, the noodling season is over, according to Big Fish Adventures, and just ended in the month of August. You can contact them by going to their contact page and set something up for next year in advance, as long as they're not already over-booked since the recent show's fame!
Another noodling guide group that I've found online is known as "Uncle Redneck and Bob", who are located in Little Axe, Oklahoma. These guys seem pretty hardcore and make a requirement that each person knows how to swim and also have their OK fishing license or permits. According to www.fishingloft.com, these guys charge $100 a person. You can call them for rates and more information at (405) 549-7980 or contact "Freddie" at (405) 831-0052.
As for Kentucky and Arkansas, I suggest going to the Fish & Wildlife websites and finding someone via the contact pages and maps there. Unfortunately, many of the guides and people who do noodling do not seem to be the computer/website type!
Louisiana also has some noodling and handfishing guides, but if you're smart you'll stay away from states with large gators in the water! Good luck, and happy hillbilly handfishing. I have faith that if you do your research on the nearest noodling state of your choice, you'll find a competent and professional enough noodling guide and a great place to go noodling. Do some quick google searches such as "noodling guide in _____". Google always provides results.
In Tennessee, there is the BigTNCats folks who so graciously have left their link in the comment section of this hub. I checked them out, and they seem pretty legitimate so you can check them out too at www.bigtncats.com.
Check out the links in the comments section below, many noodlers and professional hand-fishers have left their websites and contact info for those interested!
© 2011 Kitty Fields