Posted by Kerry Grissett on February 18, 2002 at 21:33:35:
In a way I am glad that the reports I am getting are just about the same as my own experience, but then again I wish I was getting at least SOME good reports about crappie fishing from somewhere in North Alabama.
This is the slowest I have seen the crappie hit in several years. Although an occasional half-decent stringer comes out now and then and there have been some 2+ pounders caught, I haven't heard from anyone who has really done well since fall of 2001. Maybe there is someone out there who is tearing them up and not saying anything? I doubt it or at least I doubt they are doing it consistently.
This is one of those times when the crappie have simply eluded me and blown all my theories out of the water. Of course, the lake level fluctuations on Wheeler haven't helped and with more rain due this week, I doubt we will have stable water for another 2 weeks, at least. I wrote TVA about the 2 foot rise on Wheeler over the last week and they said it was due to rainfall in Tennessee, but for the life of me I can't remember enough rainfall anywhere during this period that would account for their handling of Wheeler's level. Now they have pulled the plug out of the bottom and are draining the lake fast. Not good for fishing... I only hope that they don't pull this stunt just after the crappie spawn as they have done so many times in the past, and leave our future crappie (eggs) out in the sun and air to die, again. Although I like to fish Wheeler at these lower levels, it really kills the hit when they drop the water like they are doing right now.
I don't know what else to tell you. I still have my fingers crossed for a late "run", but I am not holding my breath at this point. Last year by this time I had caught several limits and had one day when I caught between 250 and 300 crappie in one day, by myself. This is not an exaggeration! Of course, I only kept the legal limit, but I culled many that day as most were keepers and quite a few were 1.5 - 2 pounders. That day it seemed that I could do no wrong. The next day though, I went back to the same spot and only caught 10 keepers. I wasn't thinking like a crappie and they had moved upstream. A friend of mine did move upstream and caught 232 with a friend and kept over 50 very nice fish.
Anyway, every time I think I know what the crappie are going to do, they do it to me. (grin-sigh)
Good luck and good fishin'
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