We have been very fortunate this winter and the cold weather has given us some good ice allowing us to be able to fish once again. Many, if not all, of our local waters haven’t been fished in the winter for the last couple of years.
This means that when fishing these waters, we are fishing for fish that haven’t been pressured at this time of year, but at the same time, feels like learning new water all over again. Last fall we tried to fish as many of these to gauge the size of fish so that come the ice season, some of them we won’t be fishing.
This particular pond, there are a couple of areas that hold the deepest water and typically this is where the crappie set up for the winter. I usually fish one general area most of the time, so this trip I wanted to start in the other deeper area, as on the open water, we did do well there.
One thing that I have been noticing this season, is the amount of perch that have been caught. Seems like no matter which body of water I have been fishing, the perch have become the dominate fish and they aren’t huge fish, 8-11”, but definitely not catching those 4” fish as well, which is nice.
As the afternoon went on, I was moving constantly trying to find the schools of crappie and after a couple of perch at a hole, drilled and moved on. Finally ended up in the area that I typically fish and this was where I started catching some crappie.
Water depth was in the 16-foot range and these crappies were relating to the 6-10-foot level in the water column. Using the Clam Outdoors Drop Kick Jig with a Maki Leechi plastic, was the bait combination and these had to be in the black color pattern.
Most of the waters that I have been fishing, the darker colored baits have been the fish’s choice as the lighter colors, the fish would look at them and move back off. You need to work the water column from the bottom to a few feet under the ice as these fish can be anywhere in that range.
By working your baits through these levels, this also allows you to be able to bring the fish in from a distance from their eye sight. If you don’t work these areas, you can miss out on many fish and watching your Vexilar flasher screen, will definitely help in dictating where these fish are positioned.