Springtime Crappie: Searching the Shore

After the long winter that we have endured, some start having visions of being able to fish on the open water once again. We are always sad to see when a season comes to an end, but some seasons are harder than others…

…and when the season does finally change, we welcome it with open arms.

I truly enjoy when the springtime comes, as that means the shorelines are starting to warm and the fish are going to start moving towards them. If we have sunny skies and warm temperatures, that will only help the matter much more.

Things that I look for when this starts happening, are objects in, or right over, the water. There are a variety of things that fall into this group, rocks, logs, overhanging trees and any sort of manmade forms along the shoreline.

These objects that are either in the water or are near the water’s surface, are heat collectors from the sun’s rays during the daylight hours. This will raise the water temperatures, and coming off the winter’s cold temperatures, will become fish magnets as they are seeking warmer water environments as well.

You can fish these areas from either a boat or from the shore, from a boat, this can be a bit more difficult with hang-ups, that when retrieving your bait, will scare the fish off. Preferably, fishing these areas from shore helps you get right to where the fish are relating to these objects, but some stealth and quietness needs to be kept in mind.

A location that we will target every spring, will be shoreline bushes that are either right over the water or hanging out from the shore into the water. We can finesse the fishing rod tip to place the bait in precise locations in the branches and after a few drops, you will quickly see where the fish are relating to.

Make sure that when setting the hook, that you don’t get to wild with the hookset, as there will be plenty of obstructions above your rod looking to create problems. Basically, to set the hook, keep tension on the line and give a short quick upward lift and they will try and get out of that structure and set the hook for you.

Some of the tighter and more obstructed areas are going to hold more fish and usually better sized fish as well. These are areas that most anglers will avoid, but if you can get a bait into these areas, your hard work will be rewarded. A little hard work is always a good thing and when the end results are in your favor, that only makes it that much sweeter.

A couple of ideas for the bait presentations, include just dropping a jig and bait in amongst the branches or cover, using the tip of your rod for placement into these tight places. This approach allows you to pinpoint your presentation exactly where you want to place the bait and allows you to quickly get into and out of that spot depending on how the fish are reacting.

The other approach is using a jig and bait, but putting a float on the line above for a strike indicator. This approach works well for working the outer edges of these cover areas and may be a bit more cumbersome for casting, but after practicing in these close proximities, it becomes second hand as to where the bait placement will be.

These shoreline locations can be intimidating to most anglers as they don’t want to get tangled up and lose their baits. But for those that are a little more adventurous, willing to put in a little hard work, and fish those areas that may never see a bait presented into it, these can be some of your perfect secret spots.

Spring time can yield you some of your best fish of the year, as these fish are doing their spawning ritual. Enjoying the resource, will b e fun to say the least, but also must be taken care of at the same time. These larger fish are in these areas for a reason and by letting them go back to their environment, this will ensure that their gene pool stays maintained in those waters so that there are opportunities for others to enjoy as well.

Things that I look for are objects in, or right over, the water. Rocks, logs, overhanging trees and any sort of manmade forms along the shoreline.

These are the areas that most anglers will avoid, but if you can get a bait into these areas, your hard work will be rewarded.

A little hard work is always a good thing and when the end results are in your favor, that only makes it that much sweeter.