Tight-line for crappie on Kerr Lake

Tight-lining is the key to catching crappie at Kerr Lake this month. (Picture by Eddie Moody)

Catch Kerr Lake’s slabs during February

For most outdoorsmen, February is just another cold month to get through while looking forward to spring. But to crappie, they feel the urge to head to the mouths of creeks, preparing to spawn. Guide Eddie Moody of Roxboro, N.C. takes full advantage of this knowledge.

“In February, crappies’ instincts tell them that the spawn is coming. They’re also following their grocery store. So a good indicator is when you see the shad moving. The crappie will start moving into the mouths of the creeks,” said Moody (984-363-5256).

Moody prefers targeting February crappie in 12 to 16 feet of water. But he’ll check water as deep as 20 feet early in the month, and as shallow as 7 feet toward the end of the month. He looks for the magic water temperature range of 55 to 58 degrees.

The upper end of the lake, Moody said, will see the hottest action first. The headwaters where the Staunton, Dan and Roanoke rivers meet will be a hotspot. And creeks like Buffalo and Bluestone will see early action as well. Anglers should concentrate on rocks and stumps, along with any type of wooden cover like brush piles or sunken debris.

Tight-lining is the key

“Tight-lining will dominate,” Moody said. “Fish will be moving slow, and you can dangle a bait in front of their face.”

Moody likes running a spread of 8 to 10 rods with the boat moving at 1/2-mile an hour or slower. He rigs up each rod with a 1/4-ounce weight, a leader of 12 to 24 inches, and a jighead in 1/32- or 1/64-ounce. Then he tips the jigheads with minnows. He likes using Bobby Garland lures in colors ranging from black and blue, chartreuse, and chartreuse and pink. On high pressure days he turns to red-colored lures.

He runs a mainline of 8-pound monofilament and uses leaders that are 6-pound test.

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About Dusty Wilson 265 Articles
Dusty Wilson of Raleigh, N.C., is a lifelong outdoorsman. He is the manager of Tarheel Nursery in Angier and can be followed on his blog at InsideNCFishing.com.

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