Wateree crappie are biting like it’s fall, sort of
Lake Wateree’s crappie bite has been on fire since the fall weather has started to cool the water temperature down. But the fish are still on their summer haunts. It’s a transition time of year, and this bite is one you don’t want to miss.
“The crappie are still on brush piles like they were all summer, but they are biting better now. These fish are real predictable right now. But they will begin moving off the brush in the next few weeks. Now is a great time to catch them,” said TC Lloyd of Southern Angling Guide Service.
Lloyd and his clients have been catching these fish on minnows fished around sunken logs, brush piles, and other debris near drop-offs. He said the bite is about as hot as any angler could want right now.
“Finding them on brush piles is the key. And as long as you have good electronics and you know how to use them, you can limit out pretty quickly. Learning to trust your electronics is so important, and many anglers just never learn how to use them properly,” he said.
Lloyd also helps clients with that. He is familiar with all the latest and greatest fishing electronics. He not only uses them, he also installs them and offers training to clients in using them to their full advantage. And while he can’t make the fish bite, he can show you how to tell if you are on top of fish or not.
High-tech electronics, simple fishing gear
And once anglers find the fish, Lloyd said a live minnow on a simple No. 6 gold Aberdeen hook is doing its job.
“You want to put a No. 5 split shot about a foot above the hook. This allows the minnow the freedom to swim around and look natural. Drop that right into the fish, then just keep it real still. When you feel a thump or pressure on the line, set the hook,” he said.
Lloyd guides on numerous lakes across both Carolinas. He said the crappie are biting good on all of them, but it’s more consistent and predictable on Wateree right now than any of the others. He doesn’t like overfishing any one spot. So he’ll catch a handful of fish in one, then move on to another one.
Once the fall pattern fully sets in, Lloyd said the fish will move off of structure and more into open water. But the bite will be just as hot.
“They’ll get off the brush and scatter out, but with the right electronics, you’ll still be able to find them,” he said. “And as the water temperature continues to drop, they will bite even better.”