Tuesday Tip: Thermocline and Crappie

During summer, the crappie there stage in the deep, cool thermocline of these creeks and then leave to go feeding on shad which is their number one prey item. Anglers should also be mindful that when temperatures are going into summer crappie will migrate out of the creeks onto the main lake. This calls for a change in tactics. Main lake points and deeper areas where creeks enter the main body of the lake are now the important areas to fish.

Locating the thermocline (point where the water temperature changes) in a reservoir is a great way to locate big crappie. All reservoirs during summer and uses the thermocline to his advantage. All reservoirs stratify to some extent in the summer and it isn’t unusual to find crappie schooling shallow over the deepest parts of the lake, usually near a main river channel. A good rule of thumb is to fish halfway down the water column. If you’re fishing in 40 feet of water, position the bait in about 20 feet of water.

What is your experience fishing around the thermocline?

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  1. SaltyDawg88

    We always look for Brushpiles near the thermocline. This works especially well in the summer during daylight hours. As the sun comes up the fish gravitate to the structure. The higher the sun the closer and tighter the fish hold to the structure. If you’re not getting hung up; you’re not where the crappie are.

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