Docks and bridges hold slabs in June
Kerr Lake’s crappie are hanging out around bridge pilings and docks, and Sam Seamster of Wild Life Adventures (youtube.com/@boom13) catches numbers of them on bridge pilings, as well as on docks that are located in various creeks.
He catches these fish using 1/16- and 1/32-ounce jigheads paired up with Lake Country Baits jigs. He likes these in the LC Shad and Bug body styles.
Seamster said bridges are always a great place to start.
“The crappie relate to bridges because of the shade. Ones that also have a little bit of current and a little bit of water depth are ideal,” he said.
Using 6-pound test line, he pitches his jig into areas he sees shad or crappie on his depthfinder. Then he allows it to fall, then swing back toward him as the line tightens.
“I don’t do anything too dramatic. If I see the fish at about 15 feet deep, I’ll just swim it back at around 10 feet or so, and wait for the crappie to react,” he said.
While bridges can produce plenty of crappie, Seamster said they can be finicky due to the amount of pressure they get from anglers. That’s why he likes fishing docks a little better.
And when it comes to fishing docks, he starts off by looking at the contour maps on his Garmin electronics. He’s looking for docks that have 15+ feet of water underneath.
“As a rule of thumb, if it’s got 15 or 16 feet of water on the front of it, I will fish it,” he said.
This is a good tip for anglers that don’t have LiveScope technology on their boats. And they can narrow down their fishing spots by looking on Google Maps before they even get on the water.
“Finding areas of the lake that have docks in those depths can help you eliminate a lot of riding around once you’re on the water,” he said.
This time of year, Seamster doesn’t drop his jigs straight down and fish that way. Instead, he pitches his jig as far under the dock as he can, then allows the jig to swim its way back as far as it can. Then he reels it the rest of the way in. He likes docks with boat covers on them because those offer plenty of shade, which helps attract the fish.
He said many docks hold big numbers of fish. Unfortunately, on some of those, the fish will bump the jig repeatedly, but not bite it. He said that’s just part of the game. When he enounters that, he just moves to another dock.
“And sometimes, you’ll find a pile of crappie on a dock, and you’ll catch four or five of them, and that’s it. That’s when you just have to move on,” he said.
Having a long rod on hand is beneficial when fishing this way. Many docks have mechanical boat lifts and other features that prevent anglers from making easy casts, offering only small, skinny areas to cast or drop a jig. Having that extra length can help reach fish that would otherwise be just out of range.
Between fishing bridges and docks, anglers can limit out on crappie, including some absolute slabs. And Seamster said they can also find some bonus fish if they happen to see deep brush in creeks while watching their electronics.