By Hays Baldwin
Years of guiding experience: 5.
Favorite lakes: Gull, Lake Independence and Whitefish Chain.
As water temps approach the mid-50-degree mark in many northern Minnesota lakes, crappies will begin making movements towards wintering areas, stacking up on the edges of main lake basins and deep weed edges in certain lakes.
A great tactic to pick apart a school quickly is a small Jigging Rapala-style lure or small spoon. Lures like these sink fast and alow you to cover water quickly.
If you notice the fish are being picky, tip your lure with a minnow head or wax worms, drive around the edges of the basin looking for small pods of crappie then drop vertically on them. This is a surefire way to put more fall slabs in the boat this fall! In the coming weeks the schools of crappie will get bigger and the fishing will only get better!
Baldwin runs Fishing 218 Guide Service, a multi-species guide service based in the Brainerd lakes area. He can be reached at (612) 419-4828.