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Tenkara Fishing for Spring Crappie

by Eric Point
(North Carolina)

I decided to take Friday off and do a little tenkara fishing for crappie. Had a pretty nice day with several large crappie and bass. I was fishing the Diawa Expert and the Nissin Zerosum (16ft #3 level line and 6X tippet).

I found the tenkara rod to be a distinct advantage today (compared to a fly rod or spinning rod). I was fishing a marabou leech (#8, weighted) and found that the longer tenkara rod allowed me to swim the fly through tops of brush piles and along logs in the water. The crappie and bass were holding tight to cover and other presentations would be more likely to get hung up.

The water on this lake is gin clear so the white fly stood out well under the water and I could work it slowing along, avoiding the limbs and letting it sink into the pockets. I lost one big bass (3-4 lbs) after a 3 or 4 minute fight. It didn't break the line but came unhooked.

With the lighter action tenkara rods, I find it more difficult to solidly hook bass as they have a tougher mouth. Pays to keep the hooks very sharp but still lose a fish from time to time.

If you'd like to see a full video of the action, search YouTube for: "Tenkara Fishing for Crappie & Bass, Apr 2020 1Bellcurve".

Comments for Tenkara Fishing for Spring Crappie

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Apr 28, 2020
nice video
by: bill piatek

Watched your video and those are some nice fish!

White is always a killer color for Crappie. My mother-in-law used to fry them up, so tasty. :-) Biggest Crappie I ever saw caught by my father-in-law was 2 3/4 pounds. Biggest one I got was 2 1/4. Great memories.

Apr 28, 2020
Nice
by: Les Albjerg

Eric - Enjoyed your video! Those are nice looking fish and it looks like you had a lot of fun! I've always done well on white with crappie. Around here they are known as "freshwater halibut." Good eating, and fun to catch! Thanks for the inspiration.

Apr 28, 2020
Thanks
by: Eric Point

Thanks Bill and Les. Was a productive day. Heading to the Appalachian Mountains this weekend for some Brook trout fishing. Tight lines!

May 04, 2020
Part of every Spring
by: Alan Luecke

The only fish I keep are a few stocker trout and some springtime crappie. My wife grew up with big crappie fish frys supplied by her dad and his friends so she's all in on the crappies.

My go to setup is a White KIller Bugger and a 4 meter rod. Crappie are a good way to practice strike detection. They often have a very soft take and require careful attention to any line movement.

May 25, 2020
Spring Fishing
by: Jeremy Drouin

I enjoyed your post and video. Since the quarantine, I've been hitting small lakes in the Kansas City area in the early evenings. All of my fishing is from the bank, but I have the same advantage with tenkara in being able to precisely cast around structure and close to the bank.

Most of the crappie I catch are small, but I've had numerous 25+ outings and few 50-60+ crappie nights. Also, hundreds of chunky bluegill, green sunfish, and sunfish hybrids. While targeting panfish the past several weeks, I've hooked into several large fish. I only managed to land two: an 18" largemouth bass (just barely hooked) and a 12" white bass. I also got a large catfish within a couple feet of the bank, but the fly popped out when I tried to maneuver it around some weeds.

I agree that hook sets can be difficult for bass with a lighter action rod. My go-to flies this spring have been size 8 leeches, woolly worms, and woolly buggers (various colors, beaded and non).

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“The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten” – Benjamin Franklin

"Be sure in casting, that your fly fall first into the water, for if the line fall first, it scares or frightens the fish..." Col. Robert Venables 1662

As age slows my pace, I will become more like the heron.


Warning:

The hooks are sharp.
The coffee's hot.
The fish are slippery when wet.

Beware of the Dogma






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