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Discussion Starter · #5,482 ·
Quick trip to my lake place Thurs afternoon. Back home Fri for grandson's soccer match. Fished from 4-6:30pm.....not exactly a time frame at the top of my list. However, this spot is well shaded at the time, holds ample submerged cover....two important trump cards to find cooperating fish. Not lik I killed them, but caught 9 crappie in 90 minutes from that first spot. It was steady, nothing spectacular from water 3-4.5' feet deep. Used shad body plastics in Monkey Milk, Key Lime, and Bluegrass patterns. No clear preference found among those colors. 2-3 legal size fish, none 10" or better.
Fished 2 other spots for 1/2 hour each. A pair of fish from 1 spot, both dinky 4 inchers. A lone legal crappie from final spot which was my pontoon.

My hope for better results in early morning Friday never materialized. Caught just 3, 1 a keeper, from 3 spots. Bite was woeful. Put rods away and did some chores before heading home.

Grandsons soccer match ended in 1-1 tie. Two well matched teams. We scored early in the 2nd half. They scored their lone goal with 2 minutes remaining. Poo! This travelling league doesn't play overtime periods nor shootouts to settle ties.
 

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Nice to see you getting at least a few. This (mid/end of Sept)time frame has always been a tough time for me. I guess the summer schools start breaking up and do something. Maybe they just quit feeding because they all have sore lips and they're tired of minnows that bite back. We marked a ton of fish but they just wouldn't bite. Water levels are stable and temps are upper 70's and up so I'm not sure why.
Last week I took the grand kids out and we only caught a total of 4 fish; 2 crappie, 1 cat and a hybrid striper in 3 1/2 hours of fishing. A couple of other friends didn't catch much either.
I'm really looking forward to the water temps dropping down into the 50's and low 60's.
Much better days are coming.....
 

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Discussion Starter · #5,484 ·
Nice to see you getting at least a few. This (mid/end of Sept)time frame has always been a tough time for me. I guess the summer schools start breaking up and do something. Maybe they just quit feeding because they all have sore lips and they're tired of minnows that bite back. We marked a ton of fish but they just wouldn't bite. Water levels are stable and temps are upper 70's and up so I'm not sure why.
Last week I took the grand kids out and we only caught a total of 4 fish; 2 crappie, 1 cat and a hybrid striper in 3 1/2 hours of fishing. A couple of other friends didn't catch much either.
I'm really looking forward to the water temps dropping down into the 50's and low 60's.
Much better days are coming.....
I'm with you on tough time for crappie as well as better days coming. Good job getting grandkids out to learn from grandpa!

Actually, my August catch of crappie easily exceeded the norm. I'm trusting when we get lower water temps, better quality fish will show up. Very suspect at the moment and GLSM size disappointing last 2 years.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5,485 ·
Fished GLSM Mon and Tues this week. Did a morning session, early afternoon, and evening session each day. Surprised me that water temp still up there in low 70's, 73.4 to be exact. I figured with a full moon and a bit of rain and front heading in, the combination might juice up the bite.

Monday morning was uninspiring in light rain. Just 6 crappies. Mid-afternoon improved with 18 more. Sitting on 24, needed only 6 more in evening to hit 30-mark which I hadn't nudged in months. Got 13 instead in a heckuva an hour with a fantastic bite. Total of 37 was best since April 22nd.

Today, Tues, managed 20 in my morning session. Early afternoon backed off to 10. I'm thinking a lot of fish from earlier sessions had stinging lips. Late afternoon session tried long and hard to get to 40. Bite wasn't there but the 8 caught pushed daily total to 38. That's 1 better than Monday! I'll take it.

Tried lots of new plastics and new color patterns. When the bite's this good, almost everything works. Ice Out, Key Lime, Monkey Milk, Glacier, a color that looks like Army Green were all different sizes and styles of shad bodies that worked in water 3-4.5' of water, fished from seawalls, that held submerged cover within 12' of bank. I found small pockets of schooled fish where I'd pull 5-12 fish from an area the size of a bathtub. Move a few feet away from the bathtub, rarely a bite to be had.

More rain on the way, much cooler temps could juice things to a new level. More important, hoping to see if some bigger crappies migrate into channels. Now catching 38 a day to get 6-7 legal fish. Year 3 of a puny cycle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5,486 ·
Lots of rain to deal with Weds, but wind was more of an issue. Didn't fish early but got out twice, once right after lunch then again about 3:30pm before heading home.

Wasn't sure if/what bite would be like. 1st session quickly showed bite was at least as good as Mon/Tues. Stayed on the first spot the entire time. Caught 16 in 90 minutes. This was within 6' of bank on submerged wood...2.5' to 3.5' of water. Most crappie were 6-8.5" length, except last 5 fish were all dinks 5" or less. One tap, eat it, and steady pull away. Hook sets were deep. Plastics used were shad bodies in bluegrass, monkey milk, pearl, and key lime. All worked and any plastic or color may have as well or better. Back to lakehouse to cleanup/packup and warmup my coffee.

3:30pm session was a different spot, more open, susceptible to wind, and heavier rain. Again, got into fish quickly. Bite was aggressive but slightly slower pace. No more than 40 minutes caught 8, no 5" dinks, all 7-9.5" with pudgy tummies. Water at this spot runs a foot deeper than earlier location with more submerged cover but PVC stuff, not wood. Bite hadn't weakened when I left. Had I taken time to add up the numbers, I would have stayed to catch 1 more crappie. With 37 on Mon, 38 Tues, then 24 during just 2 sessions Weds......total for the trip was 99 crappie.

Fun 3-days. Full moon and low pressure system were on my side to keep the fish active. Cooler fishing weather was a great change. Lower water temps should slowly attract the better quality fish into channels. Yay!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5,488 ·
tracker......that's the cycle we're in. Approx 2 yrs ago it began. Population weighted heavily to the dinks. Good report.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5,489 ·
Friend and I fished my channel Mon, Tues, and then just morning on Weds. We caught 29 first day, 34 on Tues, then just 9 in abbreviated Weds morning. Bite was progressively puny 5 barely keepers after 2 days and none thereafter. Last 2 days you had to pull them from the bottom tight to cover, vertical jigging. They'd suck the bait in momentarily, move a few inches if at all. You'd barely feel weight and lift to hook.

Water temp 62, stable from prior week and water level nicely up 5" in last 8 days. We could use a round of nasty weather to get the party going. Shad are thick. Bait color seemed less important than profile.....smaller and skinnier plastics drew what little response we mustered up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5,490 ·
Same friend and I did a repeat M-T-W crappie fishing junket this week, with just a morning session on Weds. Caught 24 between us Monday, fell off to 17 Tues, and continued the downward slope with a puny 8 Weds morning. In about the same fishing time as last trip, our catch dropped by roughly 40%.

To me the key is water temp which should be declining weekly. Nope, actually rising water temps when nightly low temps sit in the 60's. Bite was scarce for crappie and timid when you found a few. On a good note, we did catch a few bigger fish this week. No real change in weather forecast. Pretty much a rerun of the last 10 days. Will be mid-month before nightly low temps crack into 40's, the norm for Oct. By the way, the toon bite was decent, not reliable, but pretty good at times.

It's coming.
 

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Our bite has been fickle in the SW corner of the state also and these warmer temps aren't helping much.
Normally I only use jigs but at this time of the year I'll take a few minnows along. Last week I had a pretty decent day and caught 35 in just over 4 hours. Size wasn't good until I found a few on a stump in 20 fow. We need some cooler weather to get those fish to move shallow.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5,494 ·
Arrived GLSM at 3:30pm Mon and line wet at 4pm. Started under my pontoon. 1st fish there was a keeper crappie....that's a pleasant switch. 2 more crappie followed, decent fish but neither a keeper. Moved on to target my neighbor's toon. Pulled 3 more there in 30 minutes, including another keeper. Moved again but not a pontoon this time. First fish was 11", but a LMB not a crappie. Poo! Did catch 3 crappie here as well, again 1 keeper per spot fished. Finished up my 2 hour session back at the 2 toons where I began. Picked up 1 crappie at my toon, no bites at the neighbor boat. Catch 10 in 2 hours isn't bad. 3 keepers in 10 is a definite improvement.

Fish easily more active, assumably an assist from the approaching rain due tonight. Water temp up nearly 5 degrees from last Mon at 68. Good wind this evening, 15+ mph. Used a Salt and Pepper speckled Silver Phantom Tiny Shad Panfish Assassin. With shad a plenty everywhere this color plastic seemed a logical choice. It worked out ok, didn't try anything else. The toons I fished were in 3-4' of water. The other spot I fished, no pontoon, was same depth. A little better quality fish today, only 1 a dink of 5". This Saturday looks like we start a run of overnight lows in the 40's. Should easily pull water temps into the 50's. I'm pumped!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5,495 ·
Tuesday at GLSM, despite nearly all day cloud cover, the bite was anemic. Caught 16 but it was a grinder day. Morning was the worst of it, a little better in afternoon, evening bite somewhere in-between. Lots of casts, patience, scattered fish, 1 here and 1 there. Just 1 good keeper. Monkey Milk the best pattern today but not like I found any plastic that turned them on. Really need a string of nights with lows in 40's to knock 10+ degrees off the water temp. It will get them going.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5,496 ·
Water temp 64 today, windy, and good day to fish. Friend and I bankfished for 62 crappie today. We caught crappie at about every spot fished, but toons were gold. I used only 2 baits, salt/pepper silver Panfish Assassin and Monkey Milk Baby Shad.

I've been griping about lack of decent size fish. Some 10" showing up over last couple weeks and the photo is the first 11" of the fall.

Water temps should easily drop 10 degrees into next week. More fish will fire up. The best is just around the corner!
Plant Goggles Tree Sky Sunglasses
 

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Discussion Starter · #5,499 ·
No photos from today's/Sunday catch. Caught 34, 5 keepers. First 13 came from 3 spots on my normal walking circuit. Most of those were in 3' of water, hugging seawalls....within 6 inches of the concrete. 19 of the remaining 21 were enjoying life under pontoons.

Water temp down 4 degrees to 60. By morning temps finally break into 50's. Plastics used today were same ones used yesterday. Bite should get interesting.
 

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Good to see some size following the numbers.
My shallow lake way east and south of you is producing well. Most fish seem to be right at 10". And 95% of what I'm catching is coming from under pontoons. I'm shooting a 1/32 oz road runner with any shad body I have in shad patterns. Be it white or silver glitter.
After I catch the active eaters I go back with a jig/bobber for a slower presentation. Again shad pattern shad bodies being the soft plastic of choice.
I'll cast for saugeyes for a few or until the wind blows my kayak to a dock then crappie a fish a few an just keep switching it up.
No water temps from me but if I'd to guess yesterday was probably in the low 60's.
Lots of big gills eating the shad bodies as well as a couple smaller saugeyes off a spot I bank fish.
Water Fisherman Fish Recreational fishing Ray-finned fish
Fisherman Water Fish Recreational fishing Grass
 
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