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Wondering if anybody has any Spring fishing hot spots for crappies in western MN. I normally don't get time for early crappies but fish them in the Mid to late Summer. Any other Mid-Summer tactics?

Best method I 've ever found for the Crappies is the following:

Troll a small beetlespin type lure rigged with a 1/16 oz round jig head and a 2" curly tail grub. White seems to be as good as any. No minnow is necessary. Troll on the weed line in about 12-15' of water or where you find the deep edge of the Cabbage weeds at a fairly fast speed. The good bite is usually over by 8:00 in morning and doesn't start until late evening. You won't feel a bite as in northern or walleye fishing but the line will go slack. Drop rod back to the fish and set the hook immediately. Great way to fish crappies when everyone else has stopped fishing them.
 

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Welcome Field Hunter. I think we need to get together for the crappies. Last spring was a tough one because the ice came off so late. The year before was excellent. Early in the year I will look for the reeds that are crunched over from last year, and use the finder on the break to spot them down to about 20 feet. I will anchor off the reed line and I have found slip bobbers with 1/32 gypsi jigs and crappie minnows are great. For whatever reason the white glow seems to work the best. They will typically bite real well a couple of weeks before and up to walleye opener. During the summer I will go and anchor off weeds lines before sunset and I also use small beetle spins however I have the best luck with yellow. I know Sallie can be a good crappie bet early in the year
 

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I like to use bobbers. Maybe it's because I enjoy them dropping so much in the winter, who knows. It's also the easiest method for my kids.When they move in the reeds, we usually get good fishing for a couple weeks.
 

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With this kind of weather we have in the forcast, we could be crappie fishing by the end of the month. The lake that I fish has started going off, but we have current. Most area lakes still have ice, but it will go quick if we get weather in the upper 60s and hard winds.
 

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The weekend looks great for melting ice. I am starting to regret telling my wife I would help out with Kindred's Prom next Sat. I am going this weekend to get the boat fixed up so i'm ready to go when the ice is gone.
 

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Alright the geese are gone.....now I can get control of my brain back.

I'm getting the itch for more crappies, although my freezer has plenty from the winter. It shouldn't be long now before the ice is gone and the mud flats heat up.
 

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The lakes really opened up this weekend. On Saturday Lida was 95% iced in, by Sunday evening, there was only one big chunk of ice left along highway 108.
 

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I heard that most lakes around Detroit Lakes are ice free. Sounds like this weekend is going to be cold and maybe some snow, but if we get some sunny warm weather next week, the crappies might turn on. My advice for Sat. is enjoy the football draft and hope the Vikes get Jammer, Williams, or McKinny....
 
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