Fall Crappie Fishing Tips

by Billy Bob Desroleux

Fall is just around the corner. While most people are thinking about the upcoming hunting season, fall is a excellent time to think about Crappie fishing. These crappie fishing tips will help you locate the Crappie and put some fillets in your freezer for the Winter!

After the first few cold fronts of the Fall move through your area, look for feeding Crappie near the first drop off away from the bank. If you’re fishing a South shore, you may find Fall Crappie even shallower than that. South shores typically heat up quicker and therefor attract baitfish. Where you find baitfish, you’ll soon find hungry Crappie right behind them.

Fall Crappie can be caught with a variety of tactics in the Fall. One method I use to find Crappie when they’re scattered is using a Spider Rig. A Spider Rig consist of multiple rods rigged up to fish different depths. When you find Crappie hitting at a certain depth with this method, you can then set all your rods to the depth Crappie are feeding at and take advantage of their aggressive nature.

As most of you know, the best time to go fishing in the Fall is just prior to a major cold front. This is the time you can find Crappie very shallow filling up their stomachs on everything from Shad to insects.

Post cold front Crappie can be hard to get to hit your bait. I typically use smaller jigs and minnows. If the weather warms up after the cold front, look for Crappie to become active as soon as a week after the passage of the cold front.

Slow drifting small jigs and minnows can be just the ticket to get post cold front Crappie to hit your bait. Don’t forget that post cold front Fall Crappie become less active and will not chase a bait very far. Even more so, many times you’ll have to have the bait right in front of their mouths.

The good news about Fall cold fronts is that typically the cold weather doesn’t last long. If Crappie turn off feeding for a few cold days, be back on the lake when the weather starts warming up. The Crappie will be turned on and feeding heavily. Make sure you’re there to take advantage of this feeding frenzy.

When the South winds start pushing baitfish against South shorelines, you can find Crappie by using a float and jig setup. You can fish faster with jigs than minnows plus you don’t have to worry about a Crappie knocking your minnow off a hook. If you find the Crappie spread out, you should switch to a Spider Rig to snatch up the Crappie.

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