April 29, 2022
By Terry Tuma
Too many anglers associate crappie fishing with spring, then give up fishing for them in the summer. Via some common sense, and a little help from your electronics, YOU CAN find crappies during the summer!
There's a myth that crappies strictly school and suspend during the summer when they actually can be belly to the bottom this time of year.
Start by searching deep water. Sunken islands are good places to start, along with rock piles, and deep weed points. Check out deeper water near the spawning grounds you targeted a month ago.
Crappies also can roam a main basin (not just bays!) on their quest for food. Electronics are very valuable in this search. Motor around some of these structure locations and monitor the bottom, though crappies also will suspend.
Your crappie search should start with lakes that offer a good size profile of fish. Look for lakes with a solid walleye population. If you're looking for big fish, then consider larger bodies of water. Rule of thumb: Lakes with good walleye and bass fishing often have good crappie fishing.
If you find suspended fish, you're going to see a school and you may have to assume that you're seeing crappies. (It's obviously easier if you're on a good crappie lake).
It may take 30- to 45 minutes to find fish, but that's time well spent, because otherwise we're working dead water and wasting time.
Crappies will relate to a deep weedlines on some mid-age lakes, say 10- to 17 feet. These typically are good walleye lakes with solid natural reproduction. Avoid dark and shallow lakes.
Crappies do bite in the heart of summer, and if they're not, then you're just not looking in right spots!