Got out there in the pm, just as the IHSA tourney was wrapping up. Didnt hear how they ended up, or what winning weight was as I was more preoccupied with getting on the water myself. I have caught a number of crappie at Heid, but always while targeting other species. One of my goals when I set out was to not only target crappie, but to catch a "would-be limit". First spot I started, where I believed the crappie should be staging I started flipping fatheads under a slip bobber. First 5-6 tosses were snatched up immediately. Took some effort to grind out the rest, but I finally ended with a "limit" of slabs. (all fish released) Probably 2/3 were black crappie, and the rest whites. All fish were 10-14".
I got bored just watching a bobber, so I started multi-tasking by tossing gulp minnows and swimbaits. Probably lost as many fish as I caught by having the wrong rod in my hand at the time. Also caught 3 dink largemouth, 2 dink smallies, and a decent one white casting jigs.
After scratching out my final crappie, I jumped spots hoping to pick up an eye or two, casting a rocky flat I found earlier. After about 20 mins of casting, I picked up one "barely legal" eye on a ripple shad.
I had plans to come back out in the am, so I decided to call it an early night after that and get home in time for dinner.
What. A. Circus.
There was some junior bassmaster tournament on the water, in addition to the probably 60+ non-tournament boats enjoying the beautiful calm morning. This was combat fishing at its finest. Every ledge, ever hump, and every stretch of shoreline was lined up with boats waiting to pound the same water. My first few choices of spots were all occupied. Ended up finding a shallow flat that has been producing lately and just had to get in line, and fish behind other boats. We found fish, and continued to make passes over the same flat (usually behind the rotation of boats coming through) all morning. Caught a nice mix of whites and yellows, 8 walleye, and plenty of drum. Whites and yellows wanted something moving. Eyes and drum seemed to want a slow jig. Dragging and sometimes even still on the bottom. 6 shorts, a 19" and two real nice fish.
Saw a lot of fish caught trolling. Crappie, eyes, and even a couple stripers. Its not my thing, but I may have to give that a shot out there soon. It looked pretty fun as a couple boats seemed to be reeling in doubles of crappie on every pass.
One guy stopped to show me a probably ~24" walleye he found floating, with what looked like about a 10" crappie lodged in its throat. Just goes to show you, you cant throw too large of a bait.
For now, I think I may avoid weekends out on the lake. Even the over flow lot was filling up. It was crazy busy. Heres to hoping the rain holds off enough this week to slip out a time or two