CATCHIN’ CRAPPIES, MAKIN’ FRIENDS. With a warm up, we’re hoping summer – and summer patterns – get back on track soon, particularly with the Independence Day holiday looming. In the meantime, panfish are usually the first to recover from cooldowns and crappies are starting to move, get ready for the bite with our tips in today’s Three Things.
(Featured Photo: A black crappie falls for an all-white tube and jig combination. Simonson Photo)
WEATHER (Bismarck Forecast):
Our weekend warm-up waited too long! The warmth and calm forecasted for Sunday was delayed, and didn’t settle in until last evening. But don’t get a case of the Mondays, line up, tie on and hook into a good evening of fishing tonight!
Today: Mon 6/26 – South wind spurs warm-up. Hi 76, Lo 45, Winds SSE @ 9 mph.
Tomorrow: Tue 6/27 – Warm & Windy. Hi 90, Lo 54, Winds S @ 24 mph.
SOLUNAR (Bismarck Times):
Sunrise: 5:50AM Sunset: 9:41PM
Moonrise: 8:57AM Moonset: 11:48PM
Overhead: 4:27PM Underfoot: 3:58AM
Moon Phase: Waxing Crescent (10% Full)
EDGE HOUR: 8:45 – 9:45PM – Calm-ish conditions will have folks thinking about making an early exit from work today, but with the peak moon passing us by on a rather rough weekend and variable moon times today, just about any hour on the water will do. We’ll make the call for a hot sunset bite as the warmth of the day should start to get fish righted after these cool, windy days.
The post-spawn panfish bite is on, and crappies can be found moving out from their spawning bays into open water, keying on weed edges, points, and deep structure. Here are some of DEO’s favorite lures to catch calicos on darn near any water.
TUBE TOP. Any crappie angler worth his or her salt will have a selection of tiny tubes in the tacklebox. Whether rigged on a 1/16- or 1/32-ounce jighead or an insert, these 1-inch tubes are the workhorse of the panfish world, and are relatively inexpensive. To get started, pick up a kit that contains a multitude of colors and jigs that can be swapped in and out as the mood of the fish dictate.
DRESS FOR SUCCESS. Having a selection of dressed jigs like the classic Bass Buster marabou, or some chenille and marabou offerings helps beef up a selection of panfish lures. Give them a slight jiggle on the retrieve to set off the breathing action of the marabou and trigger takes from rising crappies.
SPIN ZONE. Finally, jigs rigged with tiny size 00, 0 or 1 spinners such as the Road Runner, or Beetle Spin are great ways to troll and cover water for crappies, or you can cast and work them back over large portions of an area to find fish. The flickering blade gives off that baitfish flash, and when rigged with a tube or small twister tail, the business end of the jig seals the deal.
Summer’s settling in. It only gets better from here!