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jwettelrin89
senior member (70)senior membersenior member
 
06/14/2022 04:31PM  
I have targeted crappie on Crooked and LLC several times in the bwca. The fish we do catch are usually 12-14" but we don't catch many. I usually go in early october and try to find suspended fish in 20-35 FOW either in deeper water adjacent to larger shallower bays, or I look for small deep holes in otherwise shallower areas. I have caught a few using those tecniques, but usually I end up catching more by chance when i'm walleye fishing in 25-35 FOW.

I wanted to see if anyone else here has found more effective patterns to finding crappies. What general areas do you look for during particular times of the year to target them?
 
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06/15/2022 09:00AM  
We did well last fall on Basswood for really nice sized crappies and actually limited out. We went at beginning of October which if you recall was warmer than usual so the water temps hadn't quite dropped yet to where they traditionally are at that time of the year.

Generally though at that time of the year you will find that the crappie's are going to school up and once you find one your should generally find more.

We ran into them off of mid-lake structure looking for walleye and since the water was warmer the fish were still in that general +/-25 ft. range.

The crappies were actually just mixed into the same spots as the walleye.

A good fish finder of course can be a major time savings because you are looking for spots that have a handful of marks at the bottom of the water column.

I think the mid-lake structure is the key as that's the same exact tactics we have in Iowa in the fall once the water really starts to cool down.
 
jwettelrin89
senior member (70)senior membersenior member
 
06/15/2022 04:14PM  
Thanks for the input lyontyl!

You must have been there the same time as us last yr. We were there Oct 1-6. Never had weather that nice in October!

Maybe I need to try more mid lake structure or get better electronics? I haven't had much luck fishing reefs for walleye in October. We have caught fish, but they weren't very large. We usually get bigger walleye on steep shoreline dropoffs on the windy side of the lake near deep deep water.

What was the biggest crappie you caught? I think we got 5 last year and 3 were over 13" with the biggest being 14". I'd love to get into a hungry school of those!

 
06/15/2022 11:49PM  
lyontyl: "We did well last fall on Basswood for really nice sized crappies and actually limited out. We went at beginning of October which if you recall was warmer than usual so the water temps hadn't quite dropped yet to where they traditionally are at that time of the year.


Generally though at that time of the year you will find that the crappie's are going to school up and once you find one your should generally find more.


We ran into them off of mid-lake structure looking for walleye and since the water was warmer the fish were still in that general +/-25 ft. range.


The crappies were actually just mixed into the same spots as the walleye.


A good fish finder of course can be a major time savings because you are looking for spots that have a handful of marks at the bottom of the water column.


I think the mid-lake structure is the key as that's the same exact tactics we have in Iowa in the fall once the water really starts to cool down."

Crappie populations are at all-time highs by a long ways on Basswood. Things are changing in the BWCA. Call it global warming or whatever you want, but panfish thruout the BWCA has increased.
 
06/16/2022 08:29AM  
jwettelrin89: " Thanks for the input lyontyl!


You must have been there the same time as us last yr. We were there Oct 1-6. Never had weather that nice in October!


Maybe I need to try more mid lake structure or get better electronics? I haven't had much luck fishing reefs for walleye in October. We have caught fish, but they weren't very large. We usually get bigger walleye on steep shoreline dropoffs on the windy side of the lake near deep deep water.


What was the biggest crappie you caught? I think we got 5 last year and 3 were over 13" with the biggest being 14". I'd love to get into a hungry school of those!


"


Biggest were probably around the 14 inch mark with many in the 13 range. I was using a Garmin 93SV Echomap plus so that definitely helped although I have ran some middle of the road Lowrance's that have done just fine finding fish as well.
 
pastorjsackett
distinguished member(1119)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/16/2022 04:34PM  
Some years ago we caught a few beauties on Agnes in the early season. Again, mixed in with the walleye. Good luck.
 
Reke0402
senior member (82)senior membersenior member
 
06/17/2022 09:39AM  
pastorjsackett: "Some years ago we caught a few beauties on Agnes in the early season. Again, mixed in with the walleye. Good luck."

Last summer my buddy caught a tank out there casting a crank from shore, we didnt measure it but it was 14-15" easily.
 
jeffw89
member (13)member
 
06/17/2022 02:14PM  
It's gotta be a solid crappie if you catch it on a crank! It's always a fun surprise when you think you hooked into a smaller walleye or bass and it's a huge crappie.
 
Basspro69
distinguished member(14047)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
 
06/19/2022 12:17AM  
I almost always use jigs, roadrunners and small minnow baits for crappies. However when I’m fishing for them in October I always use a roadrunner head tipped with a live minnow. You will catch crappies 3 to one over any other setup that I’ve used and I’ve tried alot of them .
 
naturboy12
distinguished member (384)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/19/2022 05:18PM  
Reke0402: "pastorjsackett: "Some years ago we caught a few beauties on Agnes in the early season. Again, mixed in with the walleye. Good luck."


Last summer my buddy caught a tank out there casting a crank from shore, we didnt measure it but it was 14-15" easily."


We had the same experience on Agnes several years back- 2 crappies on 2 very different cranks while trolling- 13” and 13.5”. Good surprises!
 
jwettelrin89
senior member (70)senior membersenior member
 
06/19/2022 06:44PM  
Basspro69: "I almost always use jigs, roadrunners and small minnow baits for crappies. However when I’m fishing for them in October I always use a roadrunner head tipped with a live minnow. You will catch crappies 3 to one over any other setup that I’ve used and I’ve tried alot of them . "

I'll definitely buy a couple roadrunners and bring them along for the next trip. Looks like a nice lure. I run a heavier jig with a similar flashing blade for walleye and it works pretty well, but its a round jig and the blade is on the opposite side as where you tie the knot on. Thanks for the advice!

 
Duff
distinguished member (135)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/20/2022 07:13PM  
That's pretty much how I catch them in Oct.
Mixed in with walleyes in deeper water.
Could not locate the walleye last fall, so looked for suspended schools with the Garmin, in the same general areas.

Seem to get a few before they wise up or you drift off of them.
There were even a couple big ol sunnies mixed in.



 
jwettelrin89
senior member (70)senior membersenior member
 
06/20/2022 07:53PM  
Thats a beautiful crappie! Im going to bring a nicer depth finder this year so I can have a chance at locating schools and suspended fish. Right now im using the cheapest humminbird around and it's really only good for depth and temp.

Walleye fishing was tough for us last Oct too. The warmer water had fish more scattered. Normally the weeds have thinned out quite a bit and the fish school up in different areas, but last year with all the healthy weedbeds fish were still scattered around the weeds.

Can't believe you even got a few sunnies suspended out there. I've still never caught one of those in the bwca. Maybe this year?
 
SINCE1975
distinguished member (109)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/21/2022 05:03PM  
I have never tried fall fishing in the bwca but have found them in agnes as others have mentioned in early august mixed with walleye. I have also found them during that time frame in iron lake in very shallow water relating to weeds. It was a pattern that held true for 4 or 5 years with the fish being caught on small tube jigs under a plastic bubble. Always right at sunset and the bite would last about 30 minutes. Some of these fish pushed 16 inches. Sadly this hasn't worked the last several tries in recent years.
 
cyclones30
distinguished member(3982)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
 
06/21/2022 06:45PM  
lyontyl: "jwettelrin89: " Thanks for the input lyontyl!



You must have been there the same time as us last yr. We were there Oct 1-6. Never had weather that nice in October!



Maybe I need to try more mid lake structure or get better electronics? I haven't had much luck fishing reefs for walleye in October. We have caught fish, but they weren't very large. We usually get bigger walleye on steep shoreline dropoffs on the windy side of the lake near deep deep water.



What was the biggest crappie you caught? I think we got 5 last year and 3 were over 13" with the biggest being 14". I'd love to get into a hungry school of those!



"



Biggest were probably around the 14 inch mark with many in the 13 range. I was using a Garmin 93SV Echomap plus so that definitely helped although I have ran some middle of the road Lowrance's that have done just fine finding fish as well."


You were in a boat? Or you had that rig on a canoe? I've got the same one but think I'd stick to my Helix 7 for canoe/kayak mounting. Unless I'm using livescope but no way I'm doing that on a canoe trip
 
jwettelrin89
senior member (70)senior membersenior member
 
06/23/2022 08:52AM  
SINCE1975: "I have never tried fall fishing in the bwca but have found them in agnes as others have mentioned in early august mixed with walleye. I have also found them during that time frame in iron lake in very shallow water relating to weeds. It was a pattern that held true for 4 or 5 years with the fish being caught on small tube jigs under a plastic bubble. Always right at sunset and the bite would last about 30 minutes. Some of these fish pushed 16 inches. Sadly this hasn't worked the last several tries in recent years.
"


Thanks for the input!

I would imagine if I went in the summer I would probably try along weed edges first. Usually by the time I go in october the weed beds have started to thin out quite a bit and I think most of the crappie are transitioning to their winter locations.

A 16" is what I'm after! I'm usually fishing for walleye around sunset, but I might need to focus on crappie 1 or 2 nights. I don't even keep the big crappies, they're a lot more work than cleaning walleye and they don't have cheeks, it's just fun catching the big ones!
 
06/23/2022 11:08AM  
cyclones30: "lyontyl: "jwettelrin89: " Thanks for the input lyontyl!



You must have been there the same time as us last yr. We were there Oct 1-6. Never had weather that nice in October!



Maybe I need to try more mid lake structure or get better electronics? I haven't had much luck fishing reefs for walleye in October. We have caught fish, but they weren't very large. We usually get bigger walleye on steep shoreline dropoffs on the windy side of the lake near deep deep water.



What was the biggest crappie you caught? I think we got 5 last year and 3 were over 13" with the biggest being 14". I'd love to get into a hungry school of those!



"




Biggest were probably around the 14 inch mark with many in the 13 range. I was using a Garmin 93SV Echomap plus so that definitely helped although I have ran some middle of the road Lowrance's that have done just fine finding fish as well."



You were in a boat? Or you had that rig on a canoe? I've got the same one but think I'd stick to my Helix 7 for canoe/kayak mounting. Unless I'm using livescope but no way I'm doing that on a canoe trip "


We were in a motorboat since that is a route that can have motors.

I'm not ashamed to say though that I do run the 93SV in my canoe while I'm up there. I'm not going to buy a smaller fish finder just to use in my canoe. I just made a portable version that I hook up once we are at camp. Works pretty good!
 
jwettelrin89
senior member (70)senior membersenior member
 
06/23/2022 12:16PM  
lyontyl: "cyclones30: "lyontyl: "jwettelrin89: " Thanks for the input lyontyl!




You must have been there the same time as us last yr. We were there Oct 1-6. Never had weather that nice in October!




Maybe I need to try more mid lake structure or get better electronics? I haven't had much luck fishing reefs for walleye in October. We have caught fish, but they weren't very large. We usually get bigger walleye on steep shoreline dropoffs on the windy side of the lake near deep deep water.




What was the biggest crappie you caught? I think we got 5 last year and 3 were over 13" with the biggest being 14". I'd love to get into a hungry school of those!




"




Biggest were probably around the 14 inch mark with many in the 13 range. I was using a Garmin 93SV Echomap plus so that definitely helped although I have ran some middle of the road Lowrance's that have done just fine finding fish as well."




You were in a boat? Or you had that rig on a canoe? I've got the same one but think I'd stick to my Helix 7 for canoe/kayak mounting. Unless I'm using livescope but no way I'm doing that on a canoe trip "



We were in a motorboat since that is a route that can have motors.


I'm not ashamed to say though that I do run the 93SV in my canoe while I'm up there. I'm not going to buy a smaller fish finder just to use in my canoe. I just made a portable version that I hook up once we are at camp. Works pretty good!"


How long do your batteries last and how many do you bring?

One of the main reasons I used a cheap Humminbird with a small screen is that I can get a good lead acid battery to power the unit for 3-4 full days of fishing. Im afraid if I take my helix 7 I'll be lucky to get 1 full day.

This might be the year I bite the bullet and switch over to a lithium battery. Sure would be nice to trim a couple pounds of weight.
 
06/23/2022 02:24PM  
jwettelrin89: "lyontyl: "cyclones30: "lyontyl: "jwettelrin89: " Thanks for the input lyontyl!





You must have been there the same time as us last yr. We were there Oct 1-6. Never had weather that nice in October!





Maybe I need to try more mid lake structure or get better electronics? I haven't had much luck fishing reefs for walleye in October. We have caught fish, but they weren't very large. We usually get bigger walleye on steep shoreline dropoffs on the windy side of the lake near deep deep water.





What was the biggest crappie you caught? I think we got 5 last year and 3 were over 13" with the biggest being 14". I'd love to get into a hungry school of those!





"





Biggest were probably around the 14 inch mark with many in the 13 range. I was using a Garmin 93SV Echomap plus so that definitely helped although I have ran some middle of the road Lowrance's that have done just fine finding fish as well."




You were in a boat? Or you had that rig on a canoe? I've got the same one but think I'd stick to my Helix 7 for canoe/kayak mounting. Unless I'm using livescope but no way I'm doing that on a canoe trip "




We were in a motorboat since that is a route that can have motors.



I'm not ashamed to say though that I do run the 93SV in my canoe while I'm up there. I'm not going to buy a smaller fish finder just to use in my canoe. I just made a portable version that I hook up once we are at camp. Works pretty good!"



How long do your batteries last and how many do you bring?


One of the main reasons I used a cheap Humminbird with a small screen is that I can get a good lead acid battery to power the unit for 3-4 full days of fishing. Im afraid if I take my helix 7 I'll be lucky to get 1 full day.


This might be the year I bite the bullet and switch over to a lithium battery. Sure would be nice to trim a couple pounds of weight. "


I have a 32 amp lithium Amped Outdoors battery. I store it in a power box that I take along. It will last the entire trip which are usually around 4 days.
 
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