Hot Weather Spells
Hot Crappie Action
by Steve Welch
I have done a ton of crappie fishing now in 2014 but I never tire of it. I know if you have been reading my articles of late this is all I talk about but you should actually experience this once. Lake Shelbyville has the best, consistent summer crappie fishing in the state. It is not unusual to get your limit of crappie every day for sixty days in a row.
Yeah, I know it is hot in August but Shelbyville is wide enough to get a good summer breeze on you every day. This keeps the water churned up and gives it plenty of oxygen to keep the fish active all summer long.
Try and find this nice of weather when you come down for spring crappie fishing. You can get sixty degrees one day and thirty degrees the next not to mention cold rain.
During the summer months you can sit in my Yar-Craft in a comfortable seat with your minnow bucket right beside you and catch crappie all day long in your short sleeved shirt.
All summer long, minnows are the best way to catch these fish so I have rigged my boat with on-board twelve volt air pumps and ran lines all over the boat so you can simply plug in your minnow tank anywhere you want to sit. Plus no more d-cell batteries. I have sufficient air to keep fifteen dozen minnows alive and jumping. You need good healthy bait to catch the crappie.
I have special constructed rods that are eight feet in length for slip bobber fishing. The longer rods allows you to keep your bobber stop out of the reel. This helps when casting or “flipping” as we call it. We leave out seven-feet of line and underhand pitch it about fifteen-feet over to a brush pile I have marked with a buoy.
The summer breezes we get pushes the slip bobber across the deep structure and this gets a reaction bite from a hungry crappie.
If you get hung in the brush no problem, I rig my rods with twenty-pound Fireline Crystal braided line so you will have plenty of power to straighten the small number four Aberdeen hook. The braided line helps hold the bobber stop knot in place as well.
I can catch a few fish on my Deep Ledge Jig in some color of white or pearl and a shad type body on it. The water on Shelbyville in the summer is very clear so I stick to light colored baits and shad imitating plastics.
I can’t tell you how many anglers I have made believers in my summer crappie fishing system and are amazed that you can actually catch about two hundred fish a day in the heat of summer. Just today I had a firefighter that has always gone to Wisconsin to crappie fish and has never caught this many fish, even during the spawn when they are on the bank.
I tell anglers what really makes my system work is the thermocline we get every summer. This concentrates the fish and all you need to do is locate horizontal branches right in the thermocline. That will vary with water depth but usually if you fish about fifteen-feet deep out over deeper structure you will be fine.
At the time of this writing, my August dates are still wide open and don’t forget to get booked for this fall because those fill very quickly. I still have some Kentucky Lake guided trips left for those real bruiser crappie. Just go to www.LakeShelbyvilleGuide.Com and check it for available dates.