February 2021 How To Tackle Techniques

CrappieNOW “How to” Video: Shallow Water Winter Crappie

CrappieNOW Editor Richard Simms shares a firsthand lesson on long-line trolling and finding shallow-water crappie in February.


CrappieNOW Editor Richard Simms specializes in long-line trolling. Of course, the technique works best during the pre-spawn period when crappie are not orienting as much to structure.

Even in February with cold water temperatures, don’t ignore the shallow water bite.

In the pre-spawn period fish are often suspended in open water as they migrate toward spawning areas, or following schools of bait. Trolling is the best method to cover lots of water in search of those open water, suspended fish.

The pre-spawn bite USUALLY begins in deeper water, however as Simms and his partner, Ed McCoy, discovered on this cold February day, you should never ignore shallow water even when water temperatures are hovering in the 40’s.

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