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Thread: Help for a newbie?

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by patrapper View Post
    Welcome to the site. My brother and I fish Pymatuning and Wilhelm lakes mostly. On Pymatuning,we mostly troll with very good success. We also drift and if we find them stacked,we will anker up. On Wilhelm,we mainly drift. Last time we were there,it was hot and the water was warm and the fish had lock jaw and wouldn't bite so we started trolling at 1mph and things started to change. We took a few home for the grease. Pay attention to your electronics so you can see your depth. If you catch one fish,pay attention to the depth that fish came from and what you were using on that rod to make that fish bite. That fish was there for a reason and there are probably more fish there. Repeat what you just did to see if you catch another. If you do,you may have just cracked the code. Be ready to change at any time at what you did to catch those fish because it can change at anytime.

    Sent from my LML212VL using Crappie.com Fishing mobile app

    Good advice. Thanks! I'm going to pay more attention to bait for sure. I've tried trolling, but not sure I was really using the right lures for trolling. I just bought an ultralight rod setup and a bunch more smaller jig heads and more jigs. I've got the spinner type heads now too, which I think are good for trolling? Going out to a different lake today that I know holds a TON of crappie. All small ones I'm pretty sure, but at least I know it's polluted with them. Hopefully I can find em there. There are a bunch of porcupine cribs in the lake and I know where they are, so hopefully the fish are there!

    Quote Originally Posted by Crappieorbust View Post
    Glad to have you. I fish the south, so I’m no help as to finding the fish. But I thought I would share something that I have seen on a few small boats.
    On the transom and mounted on both sides a push type lawn mower wheel was mounted to a 1” piece of sq tubing or angle iron. When in position they were about 4 to 6 inches below the boat. The operator then lifted the front to the craft and rolled it to the water. After launching a pin was removed and the wheels pivoted up and repinned so that the wheels were out of the water. I thought it was really neat and have a small boat I have considered fixing that way. But I just don’t use my small boat and have way too many other projects if you are interested message me and I will try to go into more detail.
    I learn SOMETHING new each day, unfortunately I am old enough now that I don’t always remember it the next day.
    I've seen that setup before and it's a pretty great add on if you need to drag to the water. All my closest lakes have ramps. Only one has the barricade with slides. Wheels wouldn't help on the slides. Basically there is a Jersey barrier setup at the edge of the ramp before the waterline and then there is a framework of 2x6s with delrin screwed to the top of them. You back your boat trailer right up to the barricade and then you have to unwind the winch to slide the boat down onto the rails. It's all on a hill, and launching isn't really an issue. Pulling the boat back up the slides is where it's tough. Depending on the pool, you might have to drag the boat uphill on the slides for 40 feet or so until you can get the winch line on it. My 12 foot jon is pretty easy because it's light. Anything bigger and I'd simply need an extra pair of hands to load the thing. Of course, that lake (two of em really) is probably the best all around lake system in the entire area. HUGE bass, perch, crappie n other panfish. There are zebra mussels in the lower lake, which is why the ramps have the barricades. Appreciate the thoughts though!

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  2. #12
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    Remember,color matters,size matters,presentation matters. Don't be afraid to use plastics and hair jigs as well as live bait when you troll. I use different rods trolling vs drifting. Trolling,I use 7ft lite action rods. For drifting,I use 9ft and 10ft rods with fast tips and good backbone. Here in Pa,we can use 3 rods so I will have 3 rods hanging over the side. I use live bait and hair gigs,sometimes I double rig with a minnow on top and a hair jig on the bottom. Don't be afraid to change if what you are doing isn't working.

    Sent from my LML212VL using Crappie.com Fishing mobile app



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  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by patrapper View Post
    Remember,color matters,size matters,presentation matters. Don't be afraid to use plastics and hair jigs as well as live bait when you troll. I use different rods trolling vs drifting. Trolling,I use 7ft lite action rods. For drifting,I use 9ft and 10ft rods with fast tips and good backbone. Here in Pa,we can use 3 rods so I will have 3 rods hanging over the side. I use live bait and hair gigs,sometimes I double rig with a minnow on top and a hair jig on the bottom. Don't be afraid to change if what you are doing isn't working.

    Sent from my LML212VL using Crappie.com Fishing mobile app

    I had read about all this "spider rigging" on here and elsewhere and my immediate thought was; "well, we can't do that in PA".

    I took today and tomorrow off work and hit the lake this morning first thing (after getting the kids on the bus) and of course, as soon as I launched the boat, my boss texted me and asked if I could do something for him.

    So I only got about 2 hours of fishing in on the lake closest to me. I've fished it before some, but it's really more of a bass/pike lake. That said, I know it has tons of crappie. Well, thanks to the awesome info on this site, and I have to mention Richard Gene's youtube videos, I scored my first 3 crappie that I actually targeted! I was super excited. These are dinks, but to me, a HUGE achievement! I'm so pumped. I can 100% see how people get hooked on these darn things! I think the ultralight rod and light line made a huge difference for me. The takes were SUPER subtle. I also clearly marked fish and a spot that I suspected the would be at. Wish I would have went straight to that spot when I started. Depth was interesting. This lake is mostly between 3 and 10 feet deep except for one small area that is 26. The crappie were in 12 feet of water and suspended right off the bottom. I just vertical jigged with a black and chartreuse sexeee shad w/ a chartreuse 1/16 jig head. I went with black because the water was super stained/brown from all the rain we've got over the last few days. Of course, just when I kind of figured them out and caught 3 in a row I had to leave. Wind was picking up anyway.

    Here's pics (hopefully) of 2 of em. Nice clean little fish, but little for sure. I've got all day tomorrow, so I'm gonna hit it hard again and see if I can't score more than today.





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  4. #14
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    There is a large number of fellows recommending tipping your plastic. Crappie nibbles, maggies or even some scent. I am not experience enough with this crappie game to swear to which one but scent does matter. Years ago I doubted scent's effectiveness till my brother was spanking me catching steelhead up on Lake Erie. I was tying all his jigs at the time. The best jig head was tied on a 1/32 oz plated jig cast on a worthless (too soft) hook that sometimes lasted 1 fish till it straightened out. I withheld them till he shared the answer. He was squirting on a little "magic juice" as he called it. That evened the score!
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  5. #15
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    I’ve been fishing crappie some years now but it has been my 2nd year trying to get them year round. I took a crappie guide out and he got me started. He told me what baits to use when, and also helped out explain where to fish for them at different times of the year. (Or where to start looking) I’ve read and watched a million videos and came to the conclusion time on the water is the best. Every body of water is different. The best advice that I have received has been out of the mouth from locals and on here. I can tell you this I have spent more time on the water not catching fish then I have catching, but I don’t think that I have been skunked yet! I caught a lot of fish in the spring and after fishing I went out and marked structure to fish after the spawn. Some marks worked and others didn’t. Once I catch fish in an area I try to find locations that are similar to the ones I have caught fish in. (Depth, structure, bottoms, weedbeds) I am just a beginner too, but I have had success on Bobby garland plastics tipped with crappie nibbles. I love to cast, use slip bobbers, but I haven’t really gotten into trolling yet.
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  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by mchech View Post
    There is a large number of fellows recommending tipping your plastic. Crappie nibbles, maggies or even some scent. I am not experience enough with this crappie game to swear to which one but scent does matter. Years ago I doubted scent's effectiveness till my brother was spanking me catching steelhead up on Lake Erie. I was tying all his jigs at the time. The best jig head was tied on a 1/32 oz plated jig cast on a worthless (too soft) hook that sometimes lasted 1 fish till it straightened out. I withheld them till he shared the answer. He was squirting on a little "magic juice" as he called it. That evened the score!
    Just got back from being on the lake all day! I stopped in a bait shop next to the lake this morning to get minnows, just to see and picked up a jar of white crappie nibbles too. Holy hell. Interesting to say the least. Minnows were ok if they were small enough for these tiny fish, but a natural colored jig (1/16oz black/white head) with a crappie nibble absolutely killed them! I must have caught over 100. I lost count in the 30's. There were lulls, but when it was on it was nuts. I ended up switching the "bait rod" to another jig under a float and when they turned on I couldn't reel them in fast enough.

    Again though, these are all TINY fish. Biggest was 9-1/2. As much fun as it was, I'd really like to get into some bigger ones. Now that I've got a feel for how to fish for em, I'm going to hit the other lake that has 16 inchers. I know they're going to be harder to find, but at least I have a good feel for how to fish for them. I suspect today was a fluke. They were just really hitting I think. I also managed to land about a 1-1/2lb largemouth on an ultralight with 4lb mono. That was "interesting". He hammered the jig right where the crappie were.

    Thanks for the recommendation on crappie nibbles. I've read about them, but I read this post before I left and it was fresh in my mind. Interesting thing was that they really wanted the tipped jig. I did pick up a few without the nibbles, but as soon as I'd pitch out a jig tipped with nibbles it was fish on. Crazy.

    Here's 2 dinks from today. I'll quit posting these silly little fish.



    I just thought this one was cool lookin.

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  7. #17
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    No fishing pics are silly in my book. Keep posting pics. All sizes bite & fight and it adds to knowledge. When it works you learn and when it doesn't you still learn. About the crappie nibbles tip really I got it here on crappie.com. Tons of tips being shared on this forum. I do not read the news paper very often but I read these forums at least once a day.
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  8. #18
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    Yes nibbles work. You might also want to purchase some of Ed's Slab Sauce, on this site. When your on lakes, they usually have little streams that flow into them. Try those areas also, as usually they can have a higher PH, which draws fish to them.
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  9. #19
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    In the September Issue of Crappie Now, read the article by Darl Black, as he quotes Ken Smith (aka chaunc) on this site. Lots of good info, in that article, bar none.
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  10. #20
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    I try to read anything and everything that says "panfish." Watch every "panfish" video on youtube also. My tv is on in the evening but if it isn't NCAA football or hockey I never watch. There is a lot of chaff but much good stuff to study. If it says Ken Smith or chaunc I watch or read several times. Why? Because he don't blow smoke! There are many nonsmokers on crappie.com.
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