"The early and
late parts of the ice fishing season seem to be the best for ice fishing for crappie. You’ll find these fish in both
natural and manmade lakes, ponds, and bays. When you head out to fish for crappie, take your depth finder. Drill your holes
and find the bottom, then present your bait a little above the bottom where the crappie will be".
Make sure to use a small hook, under size 8, and attach a lightweight
split shot about a foot above the hook. In most areas, the smallest minnows (under 2 inches) are the best live bait. In fact,
I often see the smallest minnows in any bait shop called crappie minnows. If you use live bait, carefully insert the hook
so it does not puncture the minnow’s spine. After all, the point of using live bait is so that it can swim around. A
few of my friends slip off the top fin too. This is supposed to make the bait more active.
I like using
live bait, but I always have several methods available to me when I head out. I carry jigs at all times because they come
in handy for so many species. Sometimes these catch crappie on their own, and other times I use jigs and tip the hook with
a very small minnow. Hook it by the mouth in this case.
The crappie in your water may not feel like eating minnows.
If you have a day of bad fishing, make sure there are fish there with a fish finder and by talking to other anglers. If you
think the fish are present, switch baits to mealworms, waxworms or mousies on a spoon (tear drop shaped lures.)
Good luck fishing.