Spring time brings life back into everything that we do in the outdoors, flowers and trees come to life, waters of our lakes start to warm, fish come into the shallows to start their spawning ritual. With the crappies getting into the height of their spring spawn, this brings together 4 anglers from 4 different states, to enjoy a day on the water.
Water temps are getting to the 57-61 degrees and that means that the crappie will soon be making beds and creating the next generation of fish. Having 2 anglers each in 2 different boats, allows for us to cover more water and structure and help each other in having a productive day all around.
The morning bite started very slow with a cooler temperature from the previous evening, and the clouds took a while to finally burn off allowing the waters to start warming once again. Watching your electronics, you could see the crappies had pulled off the shoreline breaks and were holding in deeper water with tight lips.
First couple of locations and structures weren’t producing any bites and if you could get one to commit, these were of a smaller sized fish. Changing up locations, the sun finally came out and this in turn, was like a light switch, turning on with the crappies getting right into a feeding mode.
Most productive locations were marina docks and the boats that were tied up to these docks. By fishing tight to the pontoons of these boats, in depths of 15 feet of water, there were many crappies suspended underneath these items and many times it was fish cast after cast.
Using 1/16 oz jigs with 2” paddle tail plastics or 1/16 oz hair jigs, you would cast the bait as far back into the docks and as close to the boats, working the jig back to the boat in a swimming action and the crappie were crushing this presentation.
Color didn’t seem to matter, and size of the plastics didn’t matter as well as the plastics kept having pieces torn off, you were still able to catch fish, as long as you could keep that on the jig. If the bite slowed underneath the boats, casting to the middle of the open areas in the docks still provided action from the fish as well.
Size of the fish were from 6 inches up to the biggest that measured 13.5 inches. These fish are full of spawn right now and have been feeding very well as they are thick across the back. We were able to take this pattern to other marina docks as well and once you found which dock section they were hanging to, it was fish after fish once again.
This is a great opportunity for getting kids out into the boat and catching fish, as once these are located, they will have a blast catching fish after fish and watch their expressions when they hook into those nicer sized fish occasionally.