Finding And Catching Winter Crappie

Yes! You can catch crappie in the winter. Every crappie fisherman knows about the spring bite. Come spring, your favorite lake will be crowded with anglers looking to replenish their fillet supply. Fish in the winter and you will likely have the lake or river to yourself. Crappies are just as willing to bite in the winter as they are in the spring, summer, or fall. You just need to know where to look for them.

In the north and central states crappie migrate towards deep water when the big chill of winter sets in. Start out looking for them in water that is 30 to 40 feet deep. The best spots are where deep water is close to shore. Don’t look for the typical crappie structure. Look for deep water close to shore first. If there is structure in the form of a rock piles or a downed trees, count that as a plus. In the winter, crappie will hold in deep water that is close to shore even if there isn’t a brush pile or rock pile present. The north and northwest shores seem to produce best. This is because the water is usually a little warmer on these shores because of longer exposure to the sun. Creek mouths are other key spots to try in the winter. Crappie will stack up in creek mouths on natural and man made lakes. Once a likely spot is found, use your depth finder to look for bait fish and crappie. If you’re not using a depth finder, rig a slip bobber set up to float a minnow about 30 feet down.

  Now that you’ve found a spot to fish, you need to get some bait or lures down to the fish. Crappie love minnows and this is always a good choice for bait. The thing to remember this time of year is to go slow! Put out several rods with slip bobber rigs set at different depths. Try using a 1/16th ounce tube jig on one of the slip bobber rigs. Just let it sit as if you are fishing a minnow. Crappie will bite it. Remember, slow is good! Don’t anchor the boat unless the wind is blowing you around too much. A slow drift is good.

  You should be able to put a lot of crappie in the boat using these tactics. Remember! Slow is good.

  You'll find that you will be able to use a slip bobber in a lot more situations than you could with the clip on bobber. You can use slip bobbers to precisely hold you bait just off the bottom no matter how deep the water is. Good luck!

I have found that Basspro.com has the best selection as well as prices on slip bobbers as well as all other tackle. I ususally order online but I do enjoy browsing the store in person.

Check out the fishing DVD section at The DVD Store!


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