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Locating The Best Crappie Fishing Lakes

Aug 17, 2007
Some of the best crappie fishing lakes still manage to remain a bit of a secret to the majority of anglers, mostly because those who have discovered these fine locations for finding an abundance of large crappie do not wish to share their good fortune. However, guides and scouts have dug up some of the dirt on these excellent locations for crappie and other panfish.

Santee-Cooper in South Carolina is one of these crappie fishing lakes that does have a rather large claim to fame the world record panfish weighing 5 pounds 7.5 ounces was caught here. Check out the creek arms and their miles of brushpiles, where two-pounders are fairly common. The lake doesn't freeze, and the relative warmth of the lake year round makes crappie in this lake grow quickly.

There are eight great crappie fishing lakes in the Valentine Refuge in Nebraska, if you don't mind the shallows many of these are only about five feet deep. This area is great for ice fishing, where you can find green weeds poking up through the ice and simply drill around them, coming up with some two-pound specimens even in the dead of winter. In fact, because these waters are riddled with weeds, crappie find excellent cover here.

Lake St. Clair is actually fed by St. Clair River which connects Lake Huron to Lake Erie and the Detroit River. However, because most anglers focus on the muskie and walleye in this shallow, unrecognized Great Lake, the fact that it is one of the best crappie fishing lakes in the country goes unnoticed. Of course, despite the excellent opportunities on the American side, there are even greater prospects in the bays on the Canadian side of the lake, where shallow basins and weedy bays abound. Winter ice fishing should concentrate on the shallow green weedy areas.

John Kerr Reservoir, or Buggs Island Lake, on the borders of Virginia and North Carolina, produces trophies for size and number of crappie. It's not unheard of to find black crappie over four pounds and white crappie over five pounds in this 49,000-acre lake. Obviously one of the best crappie fishing lakes based on statistics, you'll find large 2- and 3-pound slabs during prespawn spring months and shallow bites starting in mid-March.

If you like having your space, make a trip to the 114,000-acre Sam Rayburn Lake in Texas. Crappie here average between 1 and 2 pounds, with lots of larger specimens swimming around. Look for big rolling flats around 12-14 feet that are covered with hydrilla; this will be your best bet for finding a large school of crappie. As one of the largest crappie fishing lakes in the nation, there is plenty of opportunity for catching your fill here.
About the Author
Dan Eggertsen is a fishing researcher and enthusiast who is commited to providing the best crappie fishing information possible. Get more information on crappie fishing lakes here: http://www.askcrappiefishing.com
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