Fishing with a slip float rig with live baits is a great tactic to catch crappie year-round, but it performs very well in the autumn season.
Crappie will start staging on deeper brush piles during the summer to fall transition.
They can be found where sand/gravel transitions to mud/muck. Dropping a live minnow suspended from a slip bobber rig is a sure-fire way to catch more crappie this season.
The slip-float is considered the fisherman’s favorite rig.
The fascinating thing about this rig is that you can fish with it at any depth, from just a foot length to 30 feet or more.
You can achieve this by sliding the stop knot up or down the line to adjust for any depth. Setting up this rig is easy.
First, you will need to thread your line through a float, tie it on a jig hook point, and add a one split shot or two over the hook.
Next, you should tip the jig with live bait.
You can choose to tie a stop knot or use a commercial rubber stop over the float.
Unlike many other bobber rigs, you can throw slip float accurately because the float and the lure are close together.
With this rig, you would get the best out of catching crappies.
2) Minnow-and-Brush Jigs Rig
Here is another great rigging style for crappie anglers.
These are weedless fishing Jigs made for fishing out crappies in riverbed places covered with tall jungles of vegetation, standing timber, and brush piles.
You have a perfect chance to bring up a big catch when you add a live minnow to a weedless jig/weedless hook shank.
Since Crappies spend a lot of time hiding in riverbed places covered with tall jungles of vegetation, flooded timber, and brush piles, weedless jigs have proven helpful in bringing out slabs hidden in such areas.
The ideal way to do the right minnow and brush jig is by hooking a live minnow behind the head of the weedless jig.
With the point of the hook, go in through the mouth of the minnow and then come out through the gill.
Push the collar of the jig right up to the minnow’s lips now, turn and hook it from the bottom through the back.
Adding a weed guard to protect the hook is excellent.
The double jig crappie rig is many anglers’ favorite setup rig for summer and fall crappie fishing.
Casting a double jig can be somewhat annoying because of its mid-air tangling, but by varying the weights of the jig, at least 18″ from the first jig to the second, and using a simple loop, you can cast a double-rig like easy and, hassle-free!
When you leave more space, and a fish hits the first jig, the second jig will often not be seen by another fish as the other fish’s body will cover it.
Leaving more space allows your second jig to be seen and will increase your chance for a double-up!
Do it this simple way; a) Get a line about 36 inches long.
b) Tie your separate jigs at each end of the line.
C) Leaving a space of at least 18 inches, fold your line, tie an overhand knot, and leave enough of a loop to pass a jig through.
It would be good to put a swivel inside the overhand knot for the loop.
Then tie it to the main with a Palomar. This method allows you to attach a split foam popping cork if you decide to. Video tutorial
5) Bobber Rig
This rig is one of the simplest crappie rigs; it is simple and easy. You can as well call it the floating rig.
It is a classic method to catch any fish. However, when using it for crappie, you should use it with a live minnow or a jig.
There are two types of bobbers, the slip, and the fixed bobber, which also come in different shapes and sizes.
Slip bobbers are most used when bobber fishing deep waters.
The bobber rig gives you a visual cue when a fish strikes because of its placement.
Follow this method to Set a crappie bobber rig: a) Get a fishing line of your preferred length.
b) Position the bobber on the fishing line and adjust the length to the right depth you are fishing, possibly 1 to 2 feet from the hook.
C) Attach your bait to the hook, a live bait, or a jig. Using a lively minnow is better when bobber fishing.
6) Three-Way Swivel Rig
The three-way rig is excellent for getting the weight and bait farther apart.
In addition, the three-way rig helps keep your bait off the bottom.
You set this rig by attaching your main line to one eye of a three-way swivel.
One of the swivels attaches to your reel, while the second swivel attaches to your sinker, then the third swivel to your hook.
The rig requires a sinker on the bottom leader and two hooks, preferably for presenting different kinds of bait-and-lure combinations.
When setting this rig up, it is essential you use a dropper line of about eight inches long.
Most anglers love using this rig when fishing with live bait/minnow because it works great when fishing near the bottom for crappie.
This rig setup was meant to fish just a single bait, but many anglers prefer fishing several baits to learn what crappies prefer more; some anglers incorporate two hooks to present these different kinds of bait and lure combinations.
Set this rig using this simple method: a) Cut your leader line that will run from the bottom of the swivel to the sinker. The line should be 18 inches long.
b) Attach the sinker line to the bottom of the three-way swivel and on the other end, attach the sinker.
c) Cut your line for the hook; this should be shorter than the sinker line (12-14 inches).
Fix the (12-14 inches) leader line to the other side of the three-way swivel, and then fix the hook to the other end of the line.
d) Now, tie your main line to one of the swivel loops.
You can connect a second three-way swivel to the lower leader, attaching another leader with a hook and minnow/bait it for multiple bait presentations.
Techniques and Tricks
a) Use with Natural Baits
It would be great if you stick with real baits; crappies are overly attracted to live minnows, and using them puts you on a pedestal of going home with an icebox filled with slabs.
However, natural also means a natural profile as to your materials and color.
So even if you want to go with jigs, it is best you choose lead head jigs that imitate a small minnow is a useful and productive artificial lure to root for or use natural baits on a bare jig hook shank.
b) Spotting the Right Bottoms
When crappie fishing in deep water, it is vital to remember that they move into the littler and shallower bottoms when the water temperature rises quickly.
This happening often occurs during the early spring.
When the water temperature and the daylight’s length merge to an appropriate level, the male crappies move into the shallows—moving to the spawning sites and building football-shaped nests there. They often build these nests over gravel.
However, the crappies also make them over-sand. Another area to look out for is an area with newly formed vegetation because spawning often takes place near these floors of aquatic plants.
You may get the males only, but it is not uncommon that you may catch male and female varieties in the same quantity.
During this period, male crappies become immensely aggressive, and they very often strike at a lure because they want to defend the nests they have built.
When fishing in a natural lake, go looking for crappie near the inlets, connecting marshes, marinas, and canals.
These are jackpot places to get spring crappies. On the other hand, when looking for spawning crappies, search in small lakes, coves, or areas near the rock.
You can also find spring crappies near the downstream waters of dams or bridges.
c) Your Lure Sizes
Small-sized minnows are great for crappie. However, the popular notion is to be bold and stand out when it comes to bait, whereas with crappie, less is more.
Therefore, you must go for minnows between 1 and 1 ½ inches long. Also, endeavor to stutter or flutter your bait a lot.
Don’t just yank it hard and move the bait away from the fish; you have to keep it in their face as long as possible.
Fishing for crappie can be enjoyable when you apply the right bait techniques and tricks required. Use the best rigs that are suitable for your water depth.
You can choose between the Slip-Float, Minnow-and-Brush jigs rig, Drop Shot Rig, Double-Jig Bait Rig, Bobber Rigs, and the Three-Way Swivel Rig.
All these rigs have their unique attributes. You can try any of these rigs and stick with the most effective ones for your crappie fishing spree.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What rig is best for crappie?
You can choose between the Slip-Float Rig, Minnow-and-Brush jigs rig, Drop Shot Rig, Double-Jig Bait Rig, Bobber Rig, and the Three-Way Swivel Rig. All these rigs are best when it comes to crappie fishing. You can try any of these rigs and stick with the most effective ones for your crappie fishing.
How do you set up a crappie fishing rig?
The Slip-Float Rig, Minnow-and-Brush jigs rig, Drop Shot Rig, Double-Jig Bait Rig, Bobber Rig, and the Three-Way Swivel Rig are set to target crappies; to set up a slip-float, for example, you will need to thread your line through a float, tie it on a jig, and add a one split shot or two over the hook. Next, you tip the jig with live bait. Finally, you can choose to tie a stop knot or use a commercial rubber stop over the float.
How do you rig a bobber for crappie?
Follow this method to Set a bobber rig: a) Get a fishing line of your preferred length. b) Position the bobber on the fishing line and adjust the length to the depth you are fishing, possibly 1 to 2 feet from the hook. C) Attach your bait to the bare hook, a live bait, or a jig. Using a lively minnow is better when bobber fishing.