Took the boat out last week to do some fishing. Came across a pattern for catching Crappie several years ago which seems to be reliable, as it occurs every year around this time in midwestern Illinois.
The Crappie start moving shallow once the water temperature starts to drop into the lower 50's to mid 40 degree range. I target the ends of boat docks in the marinas. Many of the docks have two poles at the sides of each boat slip, which the dock floors slide up and down on with the waves. The poles are set in the bottom of the lake, and most have a horizontal crossbar which connects and supports the two poles. The poles get covered with algae, which attracts insects, minnows, and game fish which stay suspended around the cover.
I started out fishing with jigs & minnows, and a slip-cork. Caught several Crappie, but they were just shy of the 10" length limit on Crappie at this lake. So I switched to my jigging pole which had a 1/20th ounce Yellow Chartreuse jig head with red soft plastic bait.
Vertically jigging slowly up and down...around the docks, it didn't take long to get bit. And the first fish was a keeper. Water temps were in the mid to upper 40's, but the fish were hitting the bait hard.
Caught a number of nice Crappie & landed a very nice Largemouth Bass, which was a surprise! I released the Bass after a quick picture.
Hoping to get out a few more times, but Ol' man winter is approaching fast. Won't be long till we are ice fishing!
Till next time....tight lines!