At last it is early fall and some of the best crappie fishing of the year is very close, with several lakes already having good reports.
Lakes such as Cave Run Lake near Morehead are doing well and I have had reports of several good crappie being caught recently. One crappie over 15 inches and close to two pounds was reported to me from this lake. That is a trophy fish anywhere. I hope to get in on some of this action soon on this lake.
In crappie fishing, there are two peak times of the year to catch the most active and biggest crappie. One is early spring when crappie are in the pre-spawn season and are feeding heavy. This is when you will catch more numbers of crappie in shallow warming water.
Then in the mid to late fall and early wintertime, bigger crappie become more active and will follow baitfish schools and feed heavy for the upcoming winter. This is most crappie fishermen’s favorite time to be on the water.
As I said, crappie will follow and feed off the large baitfish schools and so always be on the lookout for this type of action in the water while you are fishing. Crappie are kind of go-between fish to catch. They are not as easy as little bluegill and not as tough as bass so a little bit of skill and crappie fishing experience can go a long way.
There are a few facts about crappie that if you know and use in your fishing will help you a lot. Crappie are at home feeding in shallow or deep water and they are more affected by things like water temperatures and light penetration into the water. Crappie will feed in shallow water as long as it is not very warm water; they much prefer cooler water. Crappie prefer lower light situations and night feeding. Crappie are ambush feeders like bass, and will hold on cover to wait for food.
Crappie will stay active in colder water, making them a yearround fish to go after. Crappie can be very color selective about baits and you may have to try and change colors several times during a trip. Crappie prefer a slow-moving bait over a dead still bait, so work your bait some when working a spot.
Crappie have their eyes located on the upper part of their heads and will always look up to feed or look for food, so try to keep your bait about a foot above the active crappie.
Just knowing little things like this will help you on your next trip.