A buddy and I took our boys out to a small Faribault area lake in search of crappies last night, and luck must’ve been on our side. First hole had fish in it, but we spent the rest of the afternoon trying to get these fish dialed in. Finding them was only half the battle, getting them to bite was challenging to say the least. The next hurdle was detecting a bite once the fish committed. A swing and a miss wasn’t a good thing, causing these negative fish to scatter for a minute or more until they slowly made their way back to you.
Crappie minnows rigged several ways in different sizes…..on different lures….didn’t work. Spoons of various sizes got them very interested, just not enough to bite. Vertical style jigs, even diamond jigs tipped with arrays of plastics/bait were snubbed. The only thing that would convert was a #8 Mini-Mert in chartreuse gold glitter. I don’t think color played as much of a role as the horizontal swimming action of this jig. Give it a pop and it darts, slow swim it and whatever you use for bait has the flicker we all try to achieve. Give any of these horizontal presentations a try when things are tough-going out there, I know it’s worked for me in the past when most else won’t.
Spring bobbers or some strike indicator was essential. I was using a 32″ TB Power Noodle which basically has the spring bobber built-in. My son Isaac would hold the pole, and I’d keep a finger just below the blank to keep the rod steady until I saw the strike……I’d lift quick and say “set the hook”….which made him feel like he set the hook. All in all we kept a few black and white crappies for a meal, put the rest back and enjoyed the time out. Not a single foot in the hole, almost an entire quart of hot chocolate consumed. Success!