As we enter into the hot summer months, crappies, bluegills and walleyes make a change to much deeper water and basically abandom the shallows for cooler water. This is very typical after the 4th of July period.
Here are some thoughts on searching and catching mid-summer crappies.
I call the mid-depths of 8 to 12 feet about perfect for mid-summer fishing and an area that will hold the majority of the pan fish. It can vary from lake to lake but it’s a good rule of thumb almost statewide.
You can rule out the shallows (2 to 6 feet) rather easily and also rule out the deep water over 18 feet as well.
Weeds are key
I am now finding both crappies and bluegills absolutely stuffed with insect larvae, worms and bloodworms as they are foraging in these mid-depths. Leafy green cabbage has been the key but certain other weeds such as coontail and milfoil also will harbor food thus attracting predator fish.
The best growth at this time of the year is still in these mid-depths. The deeper water transitions will come later.
I start by throwing or pitching a 1/16th-ounce hair jig or maribou jig along these mid-depths and hope for contact. I cover water extremely fast casting as fast as possible.
When I pop a crappie, I throw a marker buoy and hover in that area for at least five minutes.
When there is one there should be others.