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redrum1187's picture

By redrum1187 - Posted on 03 March 2009

There looks to be a warming trend approaching starting on Thursday and continuing throughout the weekend... I know the weather might not be ideal considering the chance for some showers, but looking at the cold weather we've had in days/weeks past, shouldn't this warmer weather produce some activity over the weekend?

I'm a new member on here and rather new to fishing for crappiei earlier than in the spring when we catch'em moving up to spawn... I'm just trying to get lined out where and when to fish this time of year with the up and down weather we're having.

wingman's picture

My reply is a little different than the other guys.I usally do try different depths but most of the time I fish in less than 8 feet of water. Two weeks ago I was catching fish on a small ledge in four to six feet of water. Some fish were as shallow as 2 feet, water temp was 57 degrees. Wednesday I found fish in about 4 feet of water on a big flat with very little cover. When I could find cover out there I would usally pick up a better than average fish. Water temp was 50 degrees.Troll most of the time but when the water temp get in the lower 60 I get the single pole out and work it around any cover you can find around the bank or in less than 6 feet of water. There are many different ways and places to catch fish. Just keep an open mind when on the water and try different things and you will catch fish. When you catch a good one take a mental reading about where that fish was,(depth, structure,drop off or ledge, close to shallow water and so on). Then try to find another location with the same criteria. That fish was there for a reason and most of the time he has buddies lurking somewhere nearby.

Take a kid fishing!!!

katfish76's picture

Redrum you've asked the million dollar question. I have the answers but not sure if they will help you. First you need to know some spots in different depth ranges preferably around the mouths of creeks and bays. Pre spawn crappiei tend to hang around drops and ledges around the mouths of creeks where there is cover of some sort. They typically will start to move up when the water temps reach the 50 - 55 degree mark. If the water is colder than that I would start about 15-20 feet deep and work my way up to about 8-12 and see what happened. Spring is a very frustrating time of the year when you really have to stay on the fish to know where and what they are biting. Watch the sunshine as well. The afternoons on a sunny day will typically be better than early mornings. If you catch fish at 12 feet in the mornings don't be afraid to try shallower as the day progresses. If you quit getting bit on a warm sunny day move shallower and see what happens. The fish will follow the warmer water. And remember that Crappie will start to spawn at 55 degrees. Not all of them at one time but I have caught fish in 3' of water in January and February. Two to three days of warm weather and sunshine will typically send some to the shallows to try their annual ritchual.

Chris "Katfish" Johnson
Professional Fishing & Duck Hunting Guide
Tn River Guide Service

redrum1187's picture

Thanks for the info Katfish! I've fished in and around Kentucky like some in the past, but since I live so close to Nashville now, I've found myself fishing on the cumberland river, specfically near Cheatham Dam/Ashland City... Me and a bud are heading out Thursday around mid morning to try our luck... we had planned, as you indicated, to troll at various depths starting at the mouth of the creek toward shallower water... I've caught good crappiei in the shallower sections of these spots in late spring... We're just trying to find them now... I'll report what we do.. thanks again.

KidCrappie's picture

I have caught crappiei spider rigging back in coves up against the ice in Feburary. I would look for cover inside coves in 8 to 12 feet of water if that cove has a feeder ditch running back in it. I also caught fish on the high spots on the creek channels. Good Luck on your trip.I will be in Saline Creek on Barkley Lake this weekend.

Kid Crappie

redrum1187's picture

We only landed 3 crappiei today :( Nevertheless, it was good getting out for the first time this year. The wind really blew us around and it was hard to stay on the bite and position the baits right. Always next time though... I'll post a picture of the two keepers as soon as I learn how to on here... help?

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Fish at midlevel depths, neither near the surface nor on the bottom.

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