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#12553068 - 12/27/17 01:29 PM Crappie Shallow in the creeks in the Winter?
Waco Crappie Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 06/06/13
Posts: 238
Loc: Waco TX
I used to hear that during the winter when the water gets cold crappie can be found up in the mouths of small feeder creeks. Can someone tell if this is true and or if there are any guidelines to follow or tips?
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#12553097 - 12/27/17 01:56 PM Re: Crappie Shallow in the creeks in the Winter? [Re: Waco Crappie]
Fishbonz Online   content
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 12/30/08
Posts: 4728
Loc: Desoto,Tx. Dallas county
Yes & no. It depends on the characteristics(hope I spelled it Correctly)of the Creeks that feed into a lake. In winter we all know that shad are looking for a certain comfort level by degree to stay alive.If the water is too cold they will die so to avoid death they will move to where the water is warmer & some creeks offer them this sanctuary because of their bottom composition while others don`t.If the creek offers warmer water than the lake,and the shad move in then so will the Crappie.

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#12553252 - 12/27/17 04:07 PM Re: Crappie Shallow in the creeks in the Winter? [Re: Fishbonz]
FishnDenton Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 02/18/15
Posts: 188
Loc: Denton, tx
What fishbonz said. Here around Denton it's hit or miss. I have only found 1 creek so far this winter holding crappie and it has water flowing. In the past hickory creek produced but only when the water is flowing. I think that has something to do with it. So find a creek in your area that feeds into a lake but also has some flow to it. Stagnant creeks have never produced for me before. Good luck.

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#12553356 - 12/27/17 05:40 PM Re: Crappie Shallow in the creeks in the Winter? [Re: Waco Crappie]
fishin'aholic2 Offline
TFF Guru

Registered: 11/08/07
Posts: 13372
Loc: Irving, Texas
It depends on the creek. If the creek only has shallow water they will be shallow but if it has deeper water they will be deeper. Conditions play a huge role in where and how many you catch on a given day. With time you know the conditions that are best for going out and catching a mess of creek fish. Lots of fish in the creeks around DFW right now. Just needing the water to clear for them to start back biting.
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#12553479 - 12/27/17 07:29 PM Re: Crappie Shallow in the creeks in the Winter? [Re: Waco Crappie]
Tony from Oak Point Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 01/23/05
Posts: 2168
Loc: DFW, Texas
It was funny a few days ago I was trying to catch shad using a castnet from a creek, but instead I kept catching crappie after crappie. I caught (and returned) several times more crappie that shad from the creek in question.

I don't think that's correct regarding stagnation and water flow exactly. Having a boat with a graph with side scan takes the mystery out of it for me though. I know places where they stack up in current and other places where they stack up in slack water. When they stack up well either way it is the easiest crappie fishing there is, the colder the better.

I think shad have no idea where they are at in any body of water to be honest but rather they simply move faster or slower in a random direction based on various conditions. (this is what many simple animals do but I forget the biological term) So if it is too hot or too cold they will swim faster and if it is Goldie Locks sort of conditions they will slow down. So if it is a slough or a creek that does not stretch back deeply with a depth greater than 3', the shad ping pong around until they all ping pong out of a spot when it is too cold. It's sort of like those robot vacuum cleaners. Imagine places where the robot would get stuck and never be "smart" enough to randomly find themselves back to their recharging base, like some long twisted narrow corridor. Usually if a creek goes back more than 1/2 mile with a depth or 3 feet or more from a main lake it will always have crappie or at least I've rarely found one that didn't when I had a boat with a graph to "cheat". Now getting them to bite well can be another story.

There are factors though. Sometimes it is as simple as sandbass taking over a creek and pushing the crappie out or to other spots. Sometimes cold current "pushes" out shad, while warm current "sucks" them in.


Edited by Tony from Oak Point (12/27/17 07:33 PM)

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#12553496 - 12/27/17 07:45 PM Re: Crappie Shallow in the creeks in the Winter? [Re: Waco Crappie]
Mckinneycrappiecatcher Offline
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 12/20/10
Posts: 3433
Loc: mckinney, tx
Creek crappie fishing sucks. It's not worth your time.
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#12554363 - 12/28/17 11:48 AM Re: Crappie Shallow in the creeks in the Winter? [Re: Tony from Oak Point]
Fishbonz Online   content
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 12/30/08
Posts: 4728
Loc: Desoto,Tx. Dallas county
Originally Posted By: Tony from Oak Point
It was funny a few days ago I was trying to catch shad using a castnet from a creek, but instead I kept catching crappie after crappie. I caught (and returned) several times more crappie that shad from the creek in question.

I don't think that's correct regarding stagnation and water flow exactly. Having a boat with a graph with side scan takes the mystery out of it for me though. I know places where they stack up in current and other places where they stack up in slack water. When they stack up well either way it is the easiest crappie fishing there is, the colder the better.

I think shad have no idea where they are at in any body of water to be honest but rather they simply move faster or slower in a random direction based on various conditions. (this is what many simple animals do but I forget the biological term) So if it is too hot or too cold they will swim faster and if it is Goldie Locks sort of conditions they will slow down. So if it is a slough or a creek that does not stretch back deeply with a depth greater than 3', the shad ping pong around until they all ping pong out of a spot when it is too cold. It's sort of like those robot vacuum cleaners. Imagine places where the robot would get stuck and never be "smart" enough to randomly find themselves back to their recharging base, like some long twisted narrow corridor. Usually if a creek goes back more than 1/2 mile with a depth or 3 feet or more from a main lake it will always have crappie or at least I've rarely found one that didn't when I had a boat with a graph to "cheat". Now getting them to bite well can be another story.

There are factors though. Sometimes it is as simple as sandbass taking over a creek and pushing the crappie out or to other spots. Sometimes cold current "pushes" out shad, while warm current "sucks" them in.
huh

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#12554414 - 12/28/17 12:36 PM Re: Crappie Shallow in the creeks in the Winter? [Re: Waco Crappie]
Bassthumb Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 01/21/11
Posts: 1315
Loc: Little Elm
I prefer fishing them on the deeper brush and drop offs in the winter. Use your electronics to find them. I'm not usually fishing stuff I can see sticking above the water. As the water warms up some you can find them a little shallower in the creeks.

I have some openings this January for winter creek trips. Hit me up if you want a tutorial. We will hit it hard again through the sand bass spawn.
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#12554440 - 12/28/17 12:56 PM Re: Crappie Shallow in the creeks in the Winter? [Re: Bassthumb]
karpbuster Offline
TFF Guru

Registered: 09/14/09
Posts: 12269
Loc: Albuquerque, NM
Ditches on the North West side of the lake gets the most sunlight and stays warmer the longest. Water is shallower and warms up faster. So the bait fish will be there, you can confirm with a decent fish finder.
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#12554728 - 12/28/17 05:05 PM Re: Crappie Shallow in the creeks in the Winter? [Re: Waco Crappie]
iluvfishin Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 10/11/07
Posts: 2224
Loc: Dallas!
Theres nothing like walking deep into the woods and tearing up crappie from the bank.

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#12556133 - 12/29/17 04:32 PM Re: Crappie Shallow in the creeks in the Winter? [Re: Waco Crappie]
RespectTheFish Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 09/04/17
Posts: 155
Loc: Abilene, Texas, Fort Phantom
This is a great subject! I enjoyed this topic and have learned some from reading the posts. I've heard the few creeks at Hubbard creek are amazing during winter but never have heard ppl doing good at my home lake, Fort Phantom which has a creek with similiar depth (about 10 feet in middle). The creek right now at Fort Phanton is almost 8-10 degrees colder than the main lake so I don't buy the theory that the creeks are "warmer" as a blanket statement for all lakes during winter. I do wonder if Crappie move into these creeks as we get consistently warmer days since the shallower more stagnant wind protect creeks warm faster just as they are cooling faster the last few months and currently?
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#12556228 - 12/29/17 06:18 PM Re: Crappie Shallow in the creeks in the Winter? [Re: RespectTheFish]
Fishbonz Online   content
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 12/30/08
Posts: 4728
Loc: Desoto,Tx. Dallas county
Originally Posted By: RespectTheFish
This is a great subject! I enjoyed this topic and have learned some from reading the posts. I've heard the few creeks at Hubbard creek are amazing during winter but never have heard ppl doing good at my home lake, Fort Phantom which has a creek with similiar depth (about 10 feet in middle). The creek right now at Fort Phanton is almost 8-10 degrees colder than the main lake so I don't buy the theory that the creeks are "warmer" as a blanket statement for all lakes during winter. I do wonder if Crappie move into these creeks as we get consistently warmer days since the shallower more stagnant wind protect creeks warm faster just as they are cooling faster the last few months and currently?
If the Shad move into the creek in the winter the Crappie will also.

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#12556460 - 12/29/17 09:37 PM Re: Crappie Shallow in the creeks in the Winter? [Re: Waco Crappie]
Ledeez Online   content
Extreme Angler

Registered: 09/01/15
Posts: 1023
Loc: Lake lavon
Can’t wait! Yep.. great read
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#12559109 - 12/31/17 11:53 PM Re: Crappie Shallow in the creeks in the Winter? [Re: Waco Crappie]
leanin post Offline
TFF Celebrity

Registered: 08/18/09
Posts: 5720
Loc: TEXAS
just like the spawn, water temp has nothing to do with where wintertime crappie are located.
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#12560986 - 01/02/18 09:20 AM Re: Crappie Shallow in the creeks in the Winter? [Re: leanin post]
fishin'aholic2 Offline
TFF Guru

Registered: 11/08/07
Posts: 13372
Loc: Irving, Texas
Originally Posted By: leanin post
just like the spawn, water temp has nothing to do with where wintertime crappie are located.

Water temp has everything to do with both. hmmm
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