Crappies are one of the best fighting and best eating panfish around. Anglers targeting these fish on lakes are in for a rewarding fishing experience. Unlike bass that require a variety of tackle, these fish can be caught on fairly simple crappie fishing lures and basic tackle setups. Crappie fishing 101, for those just starting out or for those more experienced anglers, can get you back to basic crappie fishing tips for catching more of them this year.
Do you think you are an elite panfish angler? The Northeast Panfish League (NEPL) gives all anglers the ability to prove it. Started in 2013 by Greg Martin, the NEPL offers competitive fishing events exclusively for panfish for all anglers willing to put their skills up against some of the best. The NEPL is an open league, open to all anglers, not a closed member organization. Competitions are held year round in both open and ice covered waters drawing both local and out of state anglers. The NEPL is more than a panfish tournament series, it provides a great atmosphere to meet like minded anglers, share fishing tales and learn new techniques. As the NEPL grows so does its reach. Major sponsors are now supportive to these events, providing anglers with first looks into new fishing products and existing great fishing gear.
Northeast Panfish League is preparing for its expansion in 2016 due to the overwhelming interest in panfish tournaments. The Ice Master Elite series will begin in 2016 and offer tournaments geared more towards the professional angler. These events will have higher entry fees but offer much higher payouts than current NEPL tournaments.
If your not a bass tournament angler or just looking for an fun way to meet fishing buddies and fish competitively, then join the next NEPL panfish tournament. Upcoming events can be found on our fishing events page or by visiting the Northeast Panfish League website. NEPL can also be found on Facebook and Youtube where you can keep current with panfish techniques and awesome fishing videos.
- Phil Manning (FISH THIS)
Crappie fishing is more about quantity than quality. The goal on most outings is to fill the cooler with perfect pan size fillets. From expert to beginner, these three tips will most certainly make your next fishing trip for crappie more successful.
Leave the live bait at home. The first choice for most crappie anglers is some type of live bait, whether it be a minnow or a maggot. Although quite effective, fishing with jigs is a much better approach for landing crappie after crappie. Jigs offer two advantages over live bait. The first is that you can stock many color and size variations of jigs whereas bait you have what you have. The other benefit to jigs is that they are more easily fished in deep cover, in and around where crappies are.
Think outside the box. Jigs and live bait are great but there are many other types of lures that work well for crappies. Do not limit yourself and depending on where and how you are fishing you may need to switch it up. Small spinners work well if your shore fishing and spoons are great for getting in front of crappies in deep water more quickly.
Lures and fishing tactics matter little if you don’t have good water to fish and a way to find the crappies. Using local resources like tackle stores and joining communities on social media all aid in gathering advice on good fishing spots. FISH THIS regularly adds new hotspots for a variety of species and is a great resource. Once you have some water to fish, a fish finder is a must. Crappie school around underwater structures and having a fish finder and knowing how to use it will up your catch.
- Phil Manning (FISH THIS)