We take to some early ice in pursuit of crappies spread out over a large flat home to a mix of small perch and crappie. These perch can be an annoyance so Kyle Peterson discusses how to interpret your electronics to identify and target the crappie while avoiding nuisance perch.
He recommends upsizing your presentation to a tungsten jig and plastic combo to catch the biggest fish. Jigs in the 1/16 ounce range coupled with a plastic provide the weight necessary to get down to the fish quickly. We’ve had good luck using worm-profiled plastics in the 1-inch range — they mimic worms and minnows while giving off a more undulating action than shorter insect varieties.
Lastly, Kyle details his rod and reel setup. He favors a soft tip for bite detection paired with an inline reel to avoid line twist – this prevents the bait from spinning naturally underwater while the larger diameter spool reduces line memory in cold weather.