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OKAY GUYS, I KNOW IT'S GONNA BE A LONG, COLD WINTER, AND NOT ALL OF US ARE GOING TO BE ON THE HARDWATER.

So... with that in mind, let's hear what you all plan to do, nationwide, to get the fix you need to put some fish in the boat, on the bank or in the pan. John Sheehan digs pickerel, some do blue cats. Tell us...FROM BLUEGILLS TO PERCH TO CARP...

WHAT'S YOUR FISHING GAMEPLAN LIKELY TO LOOK LIKE?

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Well hopefully we will have a better winter here in mid Michigan than last. Right now I’m gearing up for ice fishing and establishing initial first ice game plans. Hopefully the ice will stay within range of my hand auger. Ice fishing for me at first ice will be on three little natural lakes that produce quantities of quality gills and quality crappie. I have spent last summer developing topographical maps and establishing waypoints of quality spots that have been loaded on my fish finders. I’ll be able to use these maps and waypoints to drill precise holes without wasting time or manpower. If drilling becomes to labor some and since winters are so long here I may be able to talk myself into getting a propane or electric auger. I now have my portable ice shelter in possession now and will be able to lengthen my stay out on the ice. Hopefully this will keep me busy till ice out. I’ve made mistakes throughout my ice fishing career pan fishing on the ice. Always did very well with the crappie etc but never the gill. Who knows I may be able to obtain the master angler for crappie or gill this ice fishing season. Good luck to everyone this upcoming ice fishing season for gills.

Good fishing and tight lines

Ken ------<")))))><(

Excellent game plan!

This is the first year I've tried to fish for Bluegill in cold weather. So far a simple drop-shot rig with either a curl tail grub tipped with Gulp maggots or earthworms and Gulp maggot combo has worked for me in a local pond. I been fishing in the deeper part of the pond around submerged cover. I plan to try and catch a Bluegill in each of the remaining winter months, something I've never done before.
From your boat?
From the bank Scruffy. I rarely get out in the boat in the winter. The wind is to unpredictable here.
Yes, you got it rite, Jim. Bud's health has been failing an he's not gettin out much. The size structure is still pretty much the same. I've been lucky enuff to land 7 crappie there 3 lbs or better. Of course thats in the last 35 yrs! Just takes me about 5 yrs to catch a 3 lber! And the stripers at SML are a lot of fun. Thats where I earned my nick name, FishDoc. My fishin buddies hung that on me back when we first started fishin up there. They told folks I had a PHD in fishin cause I fish successfully for so many different species. I credit Buck Perry's writing and InFisherman Magazine. Some folks tell me they would get tired of fishing if they fished as much as I do. I tell them when I get tired of crappie fishing, I go bass fishing. When I get tired of that, I go striper fishing, Like Doug Stange says"So many fish. so little time"

And Yes, we start spider riggin as soon as the upper ends of the creeks start warming after the winter low temps. I'd rather catch'em castin but theres no denying how effective trollin those expansive flats can be. I've seen warmin trends in Jan that would bring some of those big females up shallow. My next project is to see how well I can catch those fish castin small jerk baits an cranks..or possibly small spinnerbaits.

Wow...sorry to hear that about Bud...Linda and I had fun fishing with him and I featured him a couple times in the In Fisherman. Hope he gets better.

Yes...you're right...I'd rather bluegill and crappie fish, and when I catch a bass by accident, it is sometimes even a disappointment. We just don't have the great crappie fisheries like you have with Kerr and Gaston. Lake Anna can be pretty good, too. I did Santee Cooper many years ago...lots of 'twos' and I got to see some threes, but didn't catch them. I hear that's on the upswing as well.

Good fishin to ya!

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