We arrive early and braved the chilly weather, rented boats, and putted off as fast as our trolling motors could take us to a few spots on the lake.
As the weather warmed we decided to leave the sheltered area we anchored in and move to a deeper area called the forest.
The forest is literally a stand of trees that were left in place on purpose when the lake was created in order to make structure for fish to relate to. We tied off to the tree trunks as our anchors wouldn't have reached bottom and they would have broken branches on the trees; it's a Shabbona rule that is told to everyone that comes with a boat.
So...cold weather, tough bite, structure...what to do? Well, you slip-rig for crappie, that's what you do!
Jason boats two nice sized crappies and Dave catches one that had his float down for thirty seconds or so before he noticed and set the hook. Sadly his boat was close enough to communicate with but too far away for a good cell phone picture of his catch so we can assume that for this day Jason was the master angler in the tallies and I was his boat "rider" in tournament speak.
We all had a great day out on the water and definitely will be back again this year. A fun day fishing with friends!