Spoon Fed Crappies|
Chris Wallace Outdoors
Jigging spoons are some of the most well known and most used lures in any ice anglers box. Jigging spoons have and can be used in a variety of situations and conditions. They can be used on the wide, expansive flats of Lake Erie when in search of ten plus pound walleyes, on the Canadian Shield in search of lake trout, or even out on small lakes searching out aggressive panfish and perch.
Spoons are the ultimate locator lure when out on the ice, not to mention they are outstanding pulse baits as well. Spoons allow you to get down to the fish fast, and lets you pick out the most aggressive fish in the area and move on, which ultimately allows you to maintain a run and gun style approach.
When dropping that lure down, you can use your electronics to determine the fishs mood and get a pulse of what the bite is going to be like. If you see fish scatter, then its time to start downsizing and slow down your approach.
Once you have located the fish, dont be too quick to put the spoon away for the day. Instead, start to slow down your tempo a little bit, and start finessing the fish that are down there. One thing most people forget is once you have a fish looking at your bait, keep jigging it, after all, the jigging is what got them to show interest in the first place, so keep doing it. Only recommendation is that you might have to slow things down a bit, but dont put a halt on all movement.
Let the fish determine your tempo for jigging, some days a simple lift, fall, lift fall is all it takes. You might also want to try shaking the spoon in place. My favorite technique on walleyes, especially in the middle of the day or on a negative bite, is to take a buckshot spoon with a whole shiner hooked through the back, and pound it into the bottom, causing the drop and minnow action to stir up the silt. That struggling minnow on the bottom is hard to resist for any hungry walleye. Try keeping a rhythm and change it until you find whats working. It is critical, like stated before, that you dont stop jigging when the fish move in. The flash and noise is what drew them in and thats what is going to keep them there and eventually seal the deal.
When buying spoons, take the time to look at what kind youre getting. Spoons with a distinct bend or rounded curve to them will have a much slower descend, causing the spoon to flutter or wobble, which is comparable to a Willospoon. Spoons that are slender like the Lindy Rattlr buckshot spoons have a real flat drop.
Spoons have made it into my arsenal for every species in the winter, anywhere from chasing lake trout with big ½ oz or 3/8 oz spoons, all the way down to number two Swedish Pimples for chasing bull gills. Give them an honest try and you wont be disappointed.
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