February 06, 2017
By John Felsher
When winter crappie go really deep, few lures work better than jigging spoons.
A metal jigging spoon sinks quickly and resembles a dying baitfish as it flutters down.
After the spoon hits bottom, raise it 2 or 3 feet and let it fall again. Most of the time, fish hit on the fall.
Crappie usually hover near brushpiles, humps or other cover. Use a depth finder to determine where fish are located and drop a spoon slightly above.
"To reach the right depth, measure from the reel to the first eye on the rod," explained Jonathan Phillips, professional crappie angler and guide (334-391-9735). "With that known measurement, people can accurately pull off line to get to the depth they want to fish. Anglers need to be precise when fishing cold water. Put the bait right in front of the fish."
Most people use 1/8- to 3/4-ounce chrome spoons. When fish become extremely finicky in cold water, crappie might want a smaller bait that sinks slowly. Use a spoon about the size of a small minnow or shad. To get a small bait down faster, add a weight above the spoon.
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