Crappie Blog

Feel Da Thump: Thump Gel explodes in crappie world

June 10, 2024

By Greg McCain For years, Monte Knight knew that he possessed a secret that gave him an advantage over other fishermen. Once a member of the FLW Tour bass-fishing circuit, Monte had developed a product for personal use that appealed to fish and contributed to his success in the professional ranks. But only when Monte…read more

Conditions bring big fish to scales in Big Crappie Bash

April 30, 2024

By Greg McCain Late April along the Tennessee River chain usually means post-spawn fish regardless of the species. In particular, crappie have normally come and gone from the shallows, completing their spawning cycle by mid April. This year has proved to be the outlier, however, with many crappie holding deep and waiting on the exact…read more

Expect bigger and better for Big Crappie Bash

April 18, 2024

By Greg McCain Just over four years ago, the Crappie Cove/ACC Crappie Stix Big Crappie Bash was nothing more than a tantalizing dream. Fast forward to the present, and that idea has blossomed into one of the most intriguing and fastest-growing crappie tournaments in the country. The fourth version of the hourly big-fish event takes…read more

Wading into Success: Expert Tips and Gear for Crappie Fishing

April 16, 2024

By Greg McCain Anglers wishing to sample the joys of wade fishing for crappie need not venture far in terms of equipment. Most fishermen, in fact, probably own adequate tackle and accessories for a successful trip. However, to increase the efficiency of wading on your local lake, consider the advice of a few members of…read more

Wading into Spring: The Art and Adventure of Pursuing Crappie

April 4, 2024

By Greg McCain Digital creator Caleb Hensley has fished for crappie for years, but only recently has he taken the jump – literally – into wading for crappie. In recent years, Caleb (903 Fishing on all social media platforms) ventured into the world of wade fishing for crappie on the east Texas lakes near his…read more

Acreman tackles tournament schedule head on

March 21, 2024

By Greg McCain Bryce Acreman, one of the youngest members of the ACC Crappie Stix pro staff, has taken on the tournament scene at full speed over the last two years. Starting from scratch in terms of tournament experience, the Louisiana angler and his father, Jeff, have competed on just about every level, from local…read more

Crappie spawn: Early or not, the time has arrived

March 7, 2024

By Greg McCain The initial days of March signal a much-anticipated time for crappie fishermen around the country. The traditional crappie spawn is just around the corner. While certain regions enjoy earlier bedding activity – sections of Florida and Texas come to mind – other areas of the country feature a spawn that typically begins…read more

Unconventional Tactics Triumph: ACC Crappie Stix Pros Secure Wins with Shallow Water

February 19, 2024

The calendar may read February, but ACC Crappie Stix pro staffers are finding success on shallow fish despite the relatively early date. In tournament competition last Saturday (Feb. 10), both Matt Xenos, of Tennessee, and Wesley Miller, of Louisiana, discovered eagerly feeding crappie in relatively shallow water. Both came away with tournament wins as a…read more

ACC staffers set Okeechobee standard

February 12, 2024

By Greg McCain While much of the country endures the vagaries of winter fishing, Florida continues to crank out big catches of crappie. A week after Florida angler Nick Whitten and his partner sacked a megabag on the St. Johns River, said to be the biggest ever in the Sunshine State, two other ACC Crappie…read more

Record Seven Fish Limit Caught In Florida Waters

January 31, 2024

By Greg McCain ACC Crappie Stix pro staffer Nick Whitten has certainly enjoyed his share of success in competitive crappie fishing, performing well in local, regional, and national tournament settings. Never, however, have all the elements lined up as they did in the recently completed Crappie USA Winter Series Classic on the St. Johns River…read more

Joe Wilson: ‘The Chubby, Redneck Oprah Winfrey’

November 29, 2023

By Greg McCain Food – podcaster, outdoorsman, chef, and amateur psychologist Joe Wilson has learned – serves as an immediate link to the hearts and minds of people. Joe, co-host of the Cookin Up a Story with Aaron and Joe podcast, cultivated the connection between his culinary skills and the eclectic mix of people he…read more

Mastering the Fall Bite: A Winning Strategy from Florida’s Crappie Trail

November 8, 2023

By Greg McCain The fall crappie season in mid-to-south Florida, which roughly parallels the pre-spawn in other parts of the country, is in full swing. Tournament circuits take advantage of the hot late fall bite that leads up to the spawn in Florida. ACC Crappie Stix pro staffer Nick Whitten loves the opportunity for some…read more

Alabama Crappie Trail launches next month

October 25, 2023

By Greg McCain The Coles, father Keith and son Weslee, are relatively new to crappie tournament fishing. That fact, however, has done little to diminish their impact on Alabama crappie tournaments over the last two-plus years, and their influence will likely increase in the near future. Keith Cole has organized and launched the Alabama Crappie…read more

More than fishing: Team Phillips conquers Expo stage

September 29, 2023

By Greg McCain A recent Friday was a normal school day for young Wyatt Phillips. He endured the routine, anticipating the weekend ahead as he got off the school bus. Once the weekend was complete, the following Monday was similar, another school day in the life of a 10-year-old. The interlude in between, however,  was…read more

LiveScope Giveaway Highlights ACC x FishUSA Presence at Expo

September 20, 2023

By Greg McCain Billed as “the largest crappie show on earth,” the Crappie Expo 2023 travels to the heart of some of the best fishing in the country this week. The latest edition of the Crappie Expo takes place in Birmingham, AL, Friday through Sunday (Sept. 22-24). Held previously in Branson, MO (twice), Shreveport, LA,…read more

Beat the heat for summer crappie

September 4, 2023

By Greg McCain The recent heat wave sent the mercury soaring to triple digits across much of the country. In many situations, the heat actually appears to bother the fisherman more than the fish. Many guides report that the late-summer bite remains steady despite water temperatures well into the 90s on many lakes. Just how…read more

Want to make a living in fishing? Choose carefully

August 23, 2023

By Greg McCain The idea of earning a living from fishing burns intensely in the minds of many. The passion goes beyond just a love of fishing. Some people, including many young fishing enthusiasts, explore the idea with the intent of making a livelihood from the sport. In the crappie fishing world, the possibilities are…read more

Pro Staff Profile: Bryce Acreman

August 8, 2023

By Greg McCain Like many youngsters in Louisiana, Bryce Acreman developed a love for fishing on the bayous, backwaters, lakes, and rivers near his home just north of Monroe. In his earlier years, he called the Ouachita River home but also soon developed an affinity for Lake D’Arbonne and for Poverty Point Reservoir. He also…read more

The Best Crappie Techniques for Beginners

July 31, 2023

By Greg McCain In crappie fishing, sometimes the oldest methods are best. Even in an age when technology dominates the highest levels of competitive crappie fishing, those advanced tactics are not always best for inexperienced fishermen looking to get into the sport. For childen or even inexperienced adults, certain techniques resonsate with those anglers possessing…read more

Unique format brings diversity to tournaments

July 27, 2023

By Greg McCain Competitive crappie fishing continues to evolve. While traditional cumulative weight events continue to dominate, other formats have surfaced on local, regional, and national levels in recent years. One such non-traditional tournament, actually the second of its kind in the Crappie Masters schedule, took place on Lake Erling in Arkansas recently. The tournament…read more

ICAST productive for ACC brand

July 18, 2023

By Greg McCain ICAST, the annual gathering of the most influential members of the fishing industry, wrapped last week in Orlando. For the first time in an official capacity, ACC Crappie Stix featured a presence at the biggest trade show in the industry, attended by over 13,000 fishing reps. ACC owner Andy Lehman, Director of…read more

Re-visiting lakes: Don’t Get Trapped in History

July 17, 2023

By Greg McCain A return trip to an infrequently fished lake sometimes leads to frustration and confusion for crappie fishermen . The fishery, productive on previous trips, just is not the same. Fish are not located in the same places in the same numbers as in previous years. Past methods fail to produce, leading fishermen…read more

5 New Products from ACC Crappie Stix

July 10, 2023

By Greg McCain ACC Crappie Stix has been known as an innovative company since its emergence in the fishing market almost 10 years ago. The evolution of the company’s rods continues this summer with the introduction of new models and twists on old ones. In addition to the new rod offerings, ACC’s apparel line continues…read more

Frogg Toggs: Comfort and Innovation for the Outdoors

June 27, 2023

By Greg McCain “Keeping folks comfortable in their outdoor pursuits” is a prevailing theme of Alabama-based outdoor apparel company Frogg Toggs. Best known for their rain wear, Frogg Toggs offers an ever-expanding line of rainsuits that keep sportsmen dry. The use of the unique fabrics associated with the brand are common among fishermen, hunters, and…read more

The Great Debate: Net or Boat Flip?

June 4, 2023

By Greg McCain Net or boat flip? The question, one often debated among crappie fishermen, remains relevant to most who ever have reason to bring a fish into the boat. Just about all anglers and teams harbor definite opinions about the matter. Tennessee angler and ACC Crappie Stix pro staff member Matt Xenos adamantly sides…read more

Lake Havasu: A Bucket List Destination for Redear

June 1, 2023

By Greg McCain When discussions of the ultimate fishing venues surface among anglers, clear destinations emerge in the conversation, Texas, Florida, or California for largemouth bass, the Great Lakes for smallmouth, and Mississippi for crappie. Yet, other places fit into that category for different species, few more so than Lake Havasu, AZ. For the uninitiated,…read more

Terrace View Marina epitomizes teamwork, hospitality

May 24, 2023

By Greg McCain Terrace View Marina, host for the last two years of the Big Crappie Bash sponsored by Crappie Cove and ACC Crappie Stix, continues to excel as the epitome of teamwork and hospitality. Located about 65 miles from Chattanooga, TN, and about the same from Knoxville, the full-service operation in the mid-section of…read more

5 Things about Triggering the Tough Bite with Jeff Jowers

May 22, 2023

By Greg McCain The time arrives each year when the crappie bite turns tough. The easy limits of spring are replaced by fish recovering from the spawn, those spooking due to ultra-clear water, and some experiencing general lethargy. So what does a crappie fisherman do in the late spring and summer months when the bite…read more

Kyron Washington puts modern twist on childhood practice

May 11, 2023

By Greg McCain When the calendar flips to May, many anglers reflect on a nostalgic fishing time from their childhood. In an age when fishermen have become single-species specialists, time remains to ignore the crappie, bass, or catfish for a few days and pursue various species that collectively fall under the umbrella of bream. Texas…read more

Big Crappie Bash Recap: Changes Make for Tough Bite

May 3, 2023

By Greg McCain Change was the prevailing theme of the third annual Crappie Cove/ACC Crappie Stix Big Crappie Bash held Saturday (April 29) on Watts Bar Lake. While the lake remained the same and the tournament was held out of Terrace View Marina for the second year, competitors faced a variety of different conditions this…read more

Young Wyatt Phillips serves as tournament complement to his father

April 28, 2023

By Greg McCain Alabama tournament competitor and crappie guide Jonathan Phillips has never had to look far when considering fishing partners. For years, Jonathan and his wife, Alicia, fished competitively and successfully, earning a reputation as a top team at local, state, regional, and national levels. The husband-wife duo formed a complementary partnership, winning championships…read more

Hall finds success in ACT big-fish event

April 25, 2023

By Greg McCain Mississippi crappie guide Kelon Hall is best known as a wading specialist, primarily focusing his efforts on Sardis Lake. Turns out that Kelon is pretty good from a boat as well. Entering his first tournament over the weekend (April 22-23), Kelon took the top prize in the American Crappie Trail event on…read more

Looking for action-filled fun: Try white bass

April 24, 2023

By Greg McCain One of the time-honored fishing rituals of spring is playing out across the country. Heeding the yearly clock, the white bass run is upon us. In the South, white bass begin their pilgrimage on spawning runs as early as February in some locations, reach a peak in March, and slowly wind down…read more

Wading for Mississippi Slabs Remains Hot with Hall’s Guide Service

April 20, 2023

Like many other forms of crappie fishing, wading for Mississippi slabs draws a unique crowd of dedicated fanatics. The practice is a time-honored tradition on the Big 4 Mississippi lakes, appealing to a hardy lot of local fishermen and a few visitors who battle rising and falling waters, cold fronts, bugs, and the occasional snake…read more

Cork fishing: 5 Things to Know

March 20, 2023

By Greg McCain The cork bobbed gently in the ripples created by a south wind and then disappeared without notice. Setting the hook, I was pleasantly surprised to find that the crappie on my home lake in northwest Alabama had already arrived shallow over a month before the calendar flipped to spring. The use of…read more

Rain Outdoors: exposing people to the great outdoors

March 17, 2023

By Greg McCain Take a young businessman from inner-city New York with no outdoors experience. Add a “quiet” young woman who has hunted and fished since she was a toddler. Blend the two complementary personalities, and the result is Rain Outdoors, one of the growing brands in the fishing and hunting world. Rain Stewart Williams…read more

Pre-spawn crappie: Unlocking the bite

February 28, 2023

By Greg McCain The pre-spawn period offers a myriad of possibilities for crappie fishermen. The timing covers the country like a wave, spreading in the winter months across the South and rolling through late spring in the northern U.S. and Canada. We covered part of the pre-spawn equation in an earlier blog post with ideas…read more

Crappie in the pre-spawn: Locating fish

February 20, 2023

By Greg McCain One of the most anticipated periods of crappie fishing, the pre-spawn features potential for large numbers and also for the biggest individual fish of the year. While catching crappie this time of year can be unpredictable, particularly for finicky females awaiting the spawn, the first trick is locating fish. We asked the…read more

Weather dominates early crappie tournaments

February 15, 2023

By Greg McCain The weather continues to be the common thread dominating early-season crappie tournaments. That scenario definitely applied in multiple ways to the inaugural Crappie Masters Elite Series tournament (Feb. 3-4) originally scheduled for Cross Lake (LA). Local officials closed Cross because of high water just before pre-fishing, forcing Crappie Masters to move the…read more

Unique qualities of ice tournaments with Brennan Schuette

February 14, 2023

By Greg McCain Brennan Schuette considers himself much more than just a fishing guide or videographer. The Minnesota outdoorsman includes guide trips and videography in his adventures, but he participates in just about any outdoor-related activity available. “Ice fishing, open-water fishing, turkey hunting, goose hunting, duck hunting. I don’t deer hunt, but I pheasant hunt,”…read more

Dock shooting: Tips for beginners

January 11, 2023

By Greg McCain Considering dock shooting but afraid to pull the trigger? Yes, the technique can be intimidating, but the repetitive nature of dock shooting can also be about the best therapy found in fishing. It’s also a deadly presentation when all the elements of fish, fishing conditions, and fisherman mesh together. For those ACC…read more

8 Inexpensive Gift Suggestions for Fisherman

December 14, 2022

By Greg McCain Few things touch a fisherman’s heart more than a nice fishing-related gift under the Christmas tree. Those gifts might range from the simple – think a basic pair of needle-nose pliers – to the far more complex and expensive like advanced electronics. A gift does not have to cost thousands of dollars,…read more

5 Obscure Places to Catch Crappie

December 11, 2022

Crappie have become a very popular species to fish for in the last several years. Known for their abundance, delicious taste, and willingness to bite, it’s no surprise. However, not all crappie fishing spots are well-known or easily accessible. Here are five of the most obscure places to catch crappie: Abandoned Quarries Quarries are often…read more

Quality Mounts For Your Electronics

December 6, 2022

By Greg McCain Dozens of companies across the country offer mounts for electronics. The products range from superior to sketchy with just about all touting the worthiness of their products. Indeed, many companies produce quality products with the choice often the result of personal preference when the time comes to buy. Once purchased, the mounts…read more

Dock shooting: New trick for an experienced fisherman

November 20, 2022

By Greg McCain Among all the opportunities that Scott Turnage has experienced in fishing, one technique bypassed him through the years. The long-time host of the G3 Sportsman TV show who continues to produce marketing videos for the boatmaker, Scott traveled the country, pursuing a variety of species and developing highly entertaining and educational content…read more

Indiana team gives back amid tournament success

November 15, 2022

By Greg McCain Success is measured in many ways relative to tournament competition. Wins and high finishes are certainly tangible goals for most competitors while other intangibles are less easily measured. The ACC Crappie Stix team of Tim Guard and Robert Williams found success on both sides of the equation, recently finishing up a tournament…read more

5 things to know: Fishing river systems and dams

November 7, 2022

By Greg McCain   Crappie are most often associated with lazy water, still lakes and pools that require little energy for the fish to find their places of refuge. Some crappie, however, are found in river systems or in current near dams. While some anglers acclimate their techniques and habits to target these fish, they…read more

ACC Team “Wins the stage” at Crappie Expo

October 29, 2022

By Greg McCain The ACC Crappie Stix team of Kyron Washington and Kennieth Pierce came to Table Rock Lake hoping to win the Mr. Crappie Invitational. With a year’s experience on the lake at the 2020 Crappie Expo near Branson, MO, expectations ran high for a quality finish. Kyron and Ken also brought with them…read more

Don’t Sleep on Canada Crappie Fishing

October 17, 2022

By Greg McCain For many U.S. anglers, fishing north of the border in Canadian waters conjures images of remote locations and of exotic species not often encountered close to home. While those scenarios occur regularly in Canadian provinces and are embedded in the fishing culture there, the average outing on the water involves far more…read more

Fall Crappie Fishing Tips

October 5, 2022

By Greg McCain The signs are in place, less daylight, crisper temperatures, hints of color in the trees. Fall crappie season has officially begun. The transition from summer patterns to the fall bite can be abrupt. One day, the crappie are hunkered down in their off-shore homes (at least across much of the country). The…read more

Fall foliage and fishing: a natural combination

October 3, 2022

By Greg McCain ACC Crappie Stix owner Andy Lehman isn’t a native to east Tennessee, but a variety of factors led him to move the business to the region earlier this year. Significant among those reasons are the epic scenery and the crappie fishing that Andy now enjoys on a regular basis as he explores…read more

Unique format tournaments: The future of crappie fishing?

September 12, 2022

By Greg McCain Some new takes on tournament formats are opening up unique possibilities for the crappie world. While traditional tournaments, both single- and multi-day, still dominate the tournament scene, Crappie Masters stepped outside the box with a unique format last month on the Ouachita River. The organization held what is thought to be the…read more

Pro staff profile: Charlie Burrow

September 6, 2022

By Greg McCain Charlie Burrow exudes passion. Whether it’s a life-long pursuit like fishing, family, or faith or a more recent endeavor like his YouTube channel, Charlie attacks life with a passion. He does so with a unique approach, perhaps best characterized by his gift for words. When questioned about one of his passions, Charlie…read more

Pond management is a ‘delicate dance’

August 2, 2022

By Greg McCain The potential to create a thriving fish population in a pond is a labor of love for Sarah Parvin. It also requires time, effort, money, and a level of expertise that most people do not possess. In Part I of a two-part series, Sarah discussed her dreams of growing the world record…read more

The Pursuit of World Record Bluegill

July 18, 2022

By Greg McCain The rocket scientists in Huntsville, AL, helped guide the country to the moon and back in the 1960s. Sarah Parvin’s work in the north Alabama town may not be equal in scope, but her mission is still ambitious relative to the fishing world. What is more uncommon than a trip to the…read more

Pro staff profile: Jiggin’ with Jake

July 12, 2022

By Greg McCain ACC pro staffers span the North American continent with most focusing on the pursuit of crappie as guides, tournament competitors, and every-day fun fishermen. Last month, the ACC blog launched a series of pro staff profiles with a look at guide and tournament competitor/director Matt Xenos, of Maryville, Tennessee. This month, the…read more

5 Tips To Become A Better Bank Fisherman

July 5, 2022

By Greg McCain For the last couple of weeks, the ACC Crappie Stix blog has focused on how high gas costs have impacted fishing. We’ve covered topics like how rising costs have changed boating habits for fishermen and how fishing from a kayak provides a low-cost alternative. Today’s topic is about bank fishing, perhaps the…read more

5 Fishing Kayak Recommendations

June 27, 2022

By Greg McCain In a time when the price of gas hovers at all-time highs, kayaks remain a cost-effective alternative to boats. After the initial investment, kayaks provide an economical means of getting on the water and even offer certain advantages compared to boats, mainly accessibility, convenience, and price. The in-the-water experience brings an added…read more

A passion for fishing evolves in many different forms

June 20, 2022

Some target specific species. Others feed their fire in competition. For Texas angler and ACC Crappie Stix pro staffer Jimmy Rea, his passion centers on kayak fishing. Jimmy has been feeding that passion for about 10 years now after borrowing a kayak from his parents to get closer to the crappie spawn. Through that time…read more

Record High Gas Prices Impact on Fishermen

June 13, 2022

By Greg McCain Skyrocketing fuel costs impact various facets of life. With prices for gas averaging almost $5 per gallon nationwide and diesel prices at least $1 more per gallon, the cost creeps into every fissure of daily life, some of them unforseen areas not considered by the average person. Take fishermen, for example. While…read more

Matt Xenos: Wired for Success

June 6, 2022

By Greg McCain A chance encounter in the turkey woods proved life-changing for crappie fisherman, guide, and YouTuber Matt Xenos. After a morning of turkey hunting, Matt emerged from the woods where his boat was parked on the banks of Tellico Lake in east Tennessee. Set up next to Matt’s boat, an older gentleman caught…read more

Minnesota Spring Crappie Fishing

May 22, 2022

By Greg McCain Regional bias filters into even things like crappie fishing. The notion that crappie spawn in late winter or early spring fits into that category. The timing of the spawn across the southern or some of the midsections of the country indeed fits that window. Yet not all crappie live in the South…read more

Take a Kid Fishing

May 12, 2022

By Greg McCain The word hooked has multiple meanings in fishing. Fish are not the only things that get hooked. The concept of “getting hooked” applies to people also, and the idea particularly impacts children, many of whom experience the angling addiction from a very early age. Many parents recall the time when the fishing…read more

Mississippi Wading 2.0

May 6, 2022

By Greg McCain The allure of Mississippi crappie fishing attracts anglers from across the country. The opportunity to catch big slabs – fish of a lifetime over three pounds – is great, and the publicity generated by tournaments in recent years has only compounded the rush on Mississippi’s famed crappied venues, particularly on Grenada. ACC…read more

ACC teams earn bids to Mr. Crappie Classic

April 29, 2022

By Greg McCain The top finishing ACC Crappie Stix teams that fished the Mr. Crappie Classic Invitational Qualifier on the Red River over the weekend (April 22-23) were a study in contrast. Local competitors Wesley Miller and Justin Smart have extensive experience on the fishery and used that knowledge to earn a second-place finish in…read more

Terrace View serves as family-oriented enclave on Watts Bar

April 25, 2022

By Greg McCain Nestled in the mid-section of Watts Bar Lake, Terrace View Marina serves as an enclave of rest and relaxation for water-weary guests. Owned and managed by the nine-strong Cauley family, Terrace View is actually more than just a marina. It’s a mini-community featuring a hotel, restaurant, boat rehab, and much more. Most…read more

Kentucky Lake group honors veterans

April 19, 2022

By Greg McCain Fishing serves as a balm for many anglers, a few moments of relaxation in a chaotic world.. That was the intent of a group of crappie enthusiasts near Kentucky Lake when they first organized a tournament for veterans in 2021. They wanted a chance to honor those who served our country, providing…read more

Locals use a little luck to win Big Crappie Bash

April 18, 2022

By Greg McCain Even the most skilled anglers acknowledge that a bit of luck comes into play in winning a tournament. The luck factor compounds at times in hourly big fish tournaments. Knowing when to weigh often determines the difference between going home empty handed and pocketing gas money. Luck played a factor for the…read more

Try wading for Mississippi slabs

April 6, 2022

By Greg McCain Wading is one of the venerable traditions of Mississippi crappie fishing. Long among the ultimate destinations for giant Mississippi slabs, the lakes near the I-55 corridor are collectively known as the Big 4. Anglers generally practice more traditional techniques on Grenada, Enid, Sardis, or Arkbutlas, all rated among the top crappie fisheries…read more

Mississippi misadventures: Finding good in a difficult trip

April 1, 2022

By Greg McCain The Scottish poet Robert Burns wrote a poem over 200 years ago that included the line (and I’m paraphrasing somewhat) “the best laid plans of mice and men often go wrong.” Surely Burns didn’t know much about crappie fishing, but he must have been foreshadowing a Mississippi trip recently completed by ACC…read more

Target bigger crappie in pre-spawn

March 24, 2022

By Greg McCain The time of the year has arrived when crappie are in various stages of the spawn. Across the country and even across the Canadian border, the bigger females arrive at staging areas just outside spawning areas. They locate on contour lines, ledges, or dropoffs, just about any structure with a depth change…read more

Friendship results in ‘hooksets from heaven’

March 21, 2022

By Greg McCain Some things simply transcend fishing. Such was the case with the friendship that developed between two gentlemen separated by a few hundred miles, one from Kentucky and one from Mississippi, but linked by a litany of common interests. Fishing was an integral part of their time together, but the connection went far…read more

Louisiana Crappie of a Lifetime

March 8, 2022

By Greg McCain, Almost by chance, Shane Hodge found himself fishing a small northern Louisiana lake in late February. The odds of catching one of the biggest crappie ever landed in Louisiana were even longer, especially after watching a friend hook what was likely the same fish only seconds before. The Farmerville, LA, resident had…read more

ACC staffers battle weather conditions on D’Arbonne

March 2, 2022

By Greg McCain If competitive crappie fishing were a boxing match, the weather scored a near TKO during the  Crappie Masters national tour event on Louisiana’s Lake D’Arbonne on the final weekend of February. Fishing against a field of over 100 boats, competitors had more than just fish to worry about. Bad conditions on Friday…read more

ACC Alliance: A Team to Watch

February 24, 2022

By Greg McCain What happens when the ACC Crappie Stix brand brings together two top-flight guides, tournament competitors, and ACC pro staff team members for the first time in a competitive situation? Les Milligan and Jonathan Phillips didn’t know exactly what to expect when they paired up to compete in an American Crappie Trail qualifier…read more

ACC Crappie Stix Expands Offering of Quality Jig Heads & Plastics

February 18, 2022

By Greg McCain The distinctive green rods by ACC Crappie Stix make them some of the most recognizable in the fishing industry.. A more recent addition to the ACC lineup is quickly gaining recognition as a quality product as well. In addition to the rods designed to fit a variety of fishing situations, did you…read more

Ice Fishing Lures & Tips to Catch More Crappie

February 13, 2022

By Greg McCain While ice fishing is a novel concept for most crappie fishermen, the lessons learned from fishing under the ice is valuable knowledge for all. One consideration is taking a close look at lures that appear to be specifically designed for fooling fish under the ice. While most target the ice-fishing crowd, they…read more

Winter Cappie Fishing: 5 Things to Know Part II

February 10, 2022

By Greg McCain Crappie fishing in winter is different from crappie fishing at other times of the year, a bit more “challenging” in the words of ACC pro staffer and Asleep at the Reel YouTuber Chris “Sarge” Gill. While the fish still eat daily, the feeding binges last for a shorter period. Being at the…read more

Tournament Roundup 2/05/22

February 9, 2022

By Greg McCain ACC pro staff members Wesley Miller and Justin Smart are generally on the fish as they enter tournament competition. Through prior experience and efficient pre-fishing, they formulate a game plan in advance of tournament hours. As the Louisiana team entered tournament competition Saturday (Feb. 5), the game plan was still a bit…read more

Winter Crappie Fishing: 5 Things to Know

February 2, 2022

By Greg McCain Gone are the days when crappie fishermen stowed their gear after the spring season. The bite, most have discovered, extends far beyond that roughly two-month window when a large percentage of crappie move shallow and spawn. While fishing can indeed reach a peak at that time, other periods of the year feature…read more

Tournament Trail Roundup 1/24/22

January 24, 2022

A new year brings new opportunities for fishermen associated with ACC Crappie Stix. The 2022 tournament season continues to kick off with various tournaments staged Saturday (Jan. 22).  Highlights among ACC pro staffers were second-place tournament finishes by Andrew Nordbye, of Alabama, and Wesley Miller and Justin Smart, of Louisiana. Tournament conditions were brutal across…read more

Florida crappie: A ray of sunshine in a dreary winter

January 24, 2022

By Greg McCain Winter crappie fishing means different things to different people in different parts of the country. A certain segment of northern anglers await the hard water for their cold-weather crappie fix. In the Midwest, South and other regions of the country, fishermen endure the vagaries of winter conditions while attempting to put slabs…read more

Buying a boat: Why aluminum is better?

January 20, 2022

By Greg McCain A basic decision for potential boat buyers is composition. Do I want a fiberglass boat or do I want one made of aluminum? In Part 1, we looked at the advantages and disadvantages of fiberglass boats. Today, we consider the same for aluminum models. While the majority of ACC Crappie Stix pro…read more

Buying a boat: Why fiberglass is better?

January 12, 2022

By Greg McCain The choices are many for fishermen seeking to buy a boat. From hull design to storage capacity to performance to many other features, buyers always consider the pros and cons of different models. A basic starting point for choosing a boat is composition: Which is better between the two most common materials…read more

Spider-rigging maintains relevance as crappie fishing continues to evolve

December 29, 2021

By Greg McCain Little doubt remains that crappie fishing has changed dramatically since the introduction of Garmin’s LiveScope technology. The forward-facing sonar completely revolutionized crappie fishing for those who chose to use it, notably at the tournament level. The potential for identifying and pursuing the biggest fish in a given pond left non-LiveScopers in the…read more

5 Features of ACC Ice Rods

December 17, 2021

By Greg McCain Ice-fishing rods occupy a specialized niche in the overall market. Used for a relatively short time each year in the northern portion of the country by a hardy group of fishermen, ice rods retain the basic components of a traditional spinning pole while fulfilling the specialized requirements necessary for success on the…read more

The ACC 16-footer: More than a trolling rod

December 15, 2021

By Greg McCain When Mississippi tournament competitor Shane Johnson joined the LiveScope generation about three years ago, he didn’t have to look far for the rod he would use. He already had it in the boat. Shane, an ACC pro staffer from Madison, MS, and a member of the ultra-competitive Magnolia Crappie Club, had long…read more

Retrieve rates matter; let the crappie decide

December 8, 2021

By Greg McCain East Tennessee guide and Wired for Crappie YouTuber Matt Xenos always expresses a high degree of enthusiasm when discussing all things crappie fishing. When I quizzed members of the ACC Crappie Stix pro staff about retrieve rates, that enthusiasm was palpable even though Matt was hundreds of miles away. The question posed:…read more

Reels To Pair With Your ACC Crappie Stix

December 3, 2021

By Greg McCain As crappie fishing continues to evolve, reels have gained a more prominent role in a fisherman’s tackle arsenal. For years, reels were something of an afterthought. The focus remained on rods, lines, and lures, especially among those anglers who used multi-rod spreads to pursue crappie. At times, reels were nothing more than…read more

Boat Ramp Etiquette: Practice Efficiency, Offer Help

November 22, 2021

By Greg McCain Last week, we addressed the idea of on-the-water boating/fishing etiquette here on the ACC Crappie Stix blog. Members of the pro staff offered some classic etiquette fails, but they also offered advice that solidifies what is and what isn’t acceptable on the water. Today, we extend the idea of fishing etiquette to…read more

Boating, Fishing Etiquette Applies To All

November 16, 2021

By Greg McCain In the words of one ACC Crappie Stix pro staff member, on-the-water boating and fishing etiquette is a “touchy” subject. The subject is “touchy” because the rules and responsibilities are subjective to a great extent. What is acceptable to one crappie fisherman is unacceptable to the next, and the definitive book of…read more

Live Technology Comparisons: Which Brand Is Best?

November 4, 2021

By Greg McCain Garmin shocked the fishing world when it introduced real-time electronics technology in 2018. Christened Panoptix LiveScope by its developers at Garmin, the revolutionary technology became a tool for fishermen everywhere. In particular, crappie fishermen adopted the new electronics and deployed it immediately. Users saw it as a weapon that enhanced their overall…read more

What’s your preference: ‘Free range chickens’ vs. timber fish?

November 2, 2021

By Greg McCain Fishing with “live” electronics over the last three-plus years has opened up a range of possibilities for crappie fishermen. A main consideration is that many more open-water options exist than most crappie fishermen knew existed. The age-old belief that crappie are structure- or cover-oriented still holds true. Since Garmin introduced its Panoptix…read more

Fall Crappie: Big Lures Equal Big Fish

October 28, 2021

By Greg McCain Practicing for the first ACC Crappie Stix Owners Tournament almost a year ago on Lake Fork in Texas, guide Jacky Wiggins flipped a cast toward a big target that appeared on his LiveScope screen. In some ways, the cast was typical of thousands that Jacky and clients make from his big center…read more

To braid or not to braid

October 25, 2021

By Greg McCain A basic dilemma in rigging for crappie fishing is line choice. The options are many and varied. Some types come relatively cheap while a single spool of other varieties could buy a decent steak dinner. Older crappie fishermen have witnessed the evolution from mono to fluorocarbon to braid. The advancement continues today…read more

Bank Fishing for Crappie

October 20, 2021

By Greg McCain Modern crappie fishing is most often associated with anglers using a variety of presentations to pursue fish in a boat. The use of the boat provides various advantages that can lead to more fish in the livewell and eventually in the frying pan. One major problem exists with this idea: Not everyone…read more

Fall Crappie Transition Pt. 2

October 18, 2021

By Greg McCain The fall crappie bite continues to ignite across the country. The timing varies from region to region, but if the fall transition hasn’t started in certain locales, then one of the most consistent periods of crappie fishing of the year lurks just around the corner. Last week in Part 1 of this…read more

Fall Crappie Transition Pt. 1

October 15, 2021

By Greg McCain Fall crappie fishing means different things to different fishermen in different regions of the country. Even those crappie anglers within the same states experience a variety of situations unique to their area. For those in the northern states, the fall transition has normally reached an advanced state by this point while anglers…read more

Mr. Crappie Invitational Recap

October 6, 2021

By Greg McCain Experience on the Red River was not a prerequisite for a high finish in the 2021 Mr. Crappie Invitational. Among the various anglers and teams associated with ACC Crappie Stix, local guide Wesley Miller certainly put his knowledge to use during the three-day tournament, held Sept. 30-Oct. 2. Other ACC pro staffers…read more

The Mr.Crappie® $250K Invitational Preview

September 29, 2021

By Greg McCain Crappie competitors normally focus on fooling the fish and beating the field in tournaments. As the 104-team field, which includes eight teams representing ACC Crappie Stix, prepares for the third annual Mr. Crappie Classic, a resounding theme has surfaced among those pre-fishing for the tournament. All teams must factor in and overcome…read more

ACC pro staffers post solid finishes at championship

September 27, 2021

By Greg McCain For years, Richard Bowling has positioned himself to win a major tournament title. The veteran Truman Lake (MO) guide, along with long-time tournament partner Gary Lee, has performed well through the years in major events, leading “three or four” after the first day of competition. The ACC Crappie Stix pro staffer found…read more

Mr. Crappie Classic and Crappie Expo 2021

September 23, 2021

By Greg McCain Wally Marshall ranks as one of the iconic figures in the crappie community. Serving as an ambassador for the sport and promoting the nickname and the brand Mr. Crappie, Wally has developed a lengthy resume that includes tournament competition, product development, and marketing all things crappie fishing. About five years ago, he…read more

5 Things That Spook Crappie

September 15, 2021

Have you ever wondered why the guy in another boat catches more crappie than you? With all factors being equal – same boat, same tackle, same lures, same electronics, same everything – that person catches more fish on a regular basis. Are his fish-catching abilities so much better than yours? Does he have a natural…read more

5 Basic Knots For Crappie Fishing

September 7, 2021

Knots are a basic but often overlooked element of fishing. They range from simple to highly complex. Some fishermen, in fact, are proud to demonstrate the multi-step process of tying a complex knot. Others keep the process simple, saving time and using knot-tying techniques that work for them. Very often, the simplest knots work as…read more

Scott Turnage: Enjoy the outdoor experience

August 26, 2021

By Greg McCain In over 20 years of outdoor television production, Scott Turnage – the G3 Sportsman – has encountered just about everything. The memorable moments piled into a highlight reel of enviable outdoor experiences; the low points, although inevitable because of the nature of the business, proved to be few and also served as…read more

‘Big Sasquatch’ overcomes limited experience on Ouachita

August 23, 2021

By Greg McCain Even limited experience on the Ouachita River did little to prevent Wesley Miller, also known as Big Sasquatch Outdoors, from catching a mega-summer bag in the North Louisiana Crappie Trail regular-season finale. An ACC pro staff member from Doyline, LA, Wesley guides regularly on the diverse fisheries in the northwest part of…read more

Summer crappie: Shallow or deep?

August 17, 2021

By Greg McCain Preconceived ideas often hinder fishing success. As fishermen, we often let those ideas, frequently dictated by history or by limited experience and knowledge, impact our approach to a day’s fishing. That thought might be particularly true for the casual crappie angler considering a trip in the summer. In planning for such a…read more

5 Things: Keeping minnows alive in summer

August 16, 2021

We’ve all encountered the same scenario: buy minnows at the local bait shop, drive to the lake, open the minnow bucket, see a floating mass (or mess) of dead minnows. The hotter the weather, the worse this situation becomes. How do I correct the dead-minnow syndrome? Here are 5 things that produce livelier minnows for…read more

Precision Casting

August 7, 2021

By Greg McCain Casting jigs is a time-honored tradition among crappie fishermen. For many years, in fact, casting was the go-to presentation for putting small jigs in front of crappie. Whether randomly casting or targeting specific structures, casting proved to be a favorite tactic for many. Like many things, the simple process waned in popularity…read more

10 Tips to Introduce Kids to Fishing

June 28, 2021

By Greg McCain Wyatt Phillips was barely a toddler when his dad first put a fishing rod in his hand. Now eight years old, Wyatt is an experienced fisherman who can hold his own with just about anyone, even adults. The fact that his father, ACC Crappie Stix pro staff member, central Alabama guide, and…read more

Pulling cranks: Go-to technique for summer

June 21, 2021

By Greg McCain Almost all crappie fishermen follow seasonal patterns and use techniques to target fish at specific times of the year. Long-lining jigs might be a go-to approach in pre-spawn, and dock shooting or vertical jigging brushpiles work well in most places in the post-spawn. Minnows prove to be a reliable option when the…read more

5 Tips For Dock Shooting

June 17, 2021

By Greg McCain Dock shooting is one of the essential techniques of crappie fishing. While not every fishery boasts suitable docks to shoot, plenty of wood or metal structures exist on most lakes to make the repetitive presentation a viable option. I solicited information about dock shooting from the ACC Crappie Stix pro staff, and…read more

Coosa River Crappie Fishing with Jeff Jowers

June 11, 2021

By Greg McCain For Jeff Jowers, a love affair with the Coosa River dates back many years. The ACC Crappie Stix pro staff member has fished the Coosa religiously since his formative years, pursuing just about all species that swim on the system that travels through east-central Alabama. His love for crappie fishing extends through…read more

Crappie fishing with a drop shot rig

June 9, 2021

By Greg McCain Even the best crappie anglers have experienced days when the fish just won’t bite. The fish are present. They are visible on LiveScope. They are set up to feed but shun normal offerings.. What’s the answer to persuade these reluctant crappie to eat? Move on? Try another color? Change from jigs to…read more

5 Things to Know about Lake Guntersville Crappie Fishing

June 7, 2021

By Greg McCain Lake Guntersville’s reputation extends far beyond the 69,000 surface acres that it covers. Traditionally known as a bucket list bass fishing destination, Guntersville has emerged as a regular stop on crappie fishing circuits in recent years because of the tremendous population of slabs that inhabit the lake. While the Big G will…read more

Grenada recovering from post-spawn lull

June 2, 2021

By Greg McCain Grenada Lake, easily everyone’s choice as the top crappie destination in the country, is about to explode again after a lull in activity following the spawn. At least that’s the estimation of guide Tim Howell, an ACC pro staff member from Oakland, MS, who guides on all of the famed Big 4…read more

Eliminating line twist

June 1, 2021

By Greg McCain Line twist on spinning reels ranks as a chronic problem for crappie fishermen. Whether they are trolling, pitching, or casting, fishermen deal with the issue regularly. Some have developed a process of spooling line that minimizes the issue while never totally controlling it. Even so, a few extra moments spent working with…read more

Lake Guntersville with YouTube Star, Fishing for Nordbye

May 12, 2021

By Greg McCain The allure of Lake Guntersville has captivated more than one visitor. The setting – just about any place on the lake – serves as a tourism poster. The people are hospitable to extremes, and the fishing remains on par with just about any destination in the country. So what more could a…read more

Watts Bar post-spawn crappie with Matt Xenos

May 10, 2021

By Greg McCain For post-spawn crappie on Watts Bar Lake in east Tennessee, guide and YouTuber Matt Xenos relies on a one-two approach that knocks out limits of crappie at this time each year. Matt, an ACC Crappie Stix pro staff member, guides and fishes on the sprawling Tennessee Valley Authority reservoir enough to follow…read more

Post-spawn bucket list: Oconee black crappie

May 7, 2021

By Greg McCain Outside the region, Lake Oconee, an east-central Georgia crappie fishery, gets far less attention compared to some nationally known venues. Locals, however, know the lake as a place with volumes of fish eager to eat in the post-spawn and some unique qualities that make Oconee a definite bucket list destination for serious…read more

Post-Spawn on Toledo Bend

May 5, 2021

By Greg McCain Toledo Bend covers 165,000 acres on the Texas-Louisiana border. It’s best known as a bass-fishing destination and certainly deserves that reputation. Yet plenty of locals know the potential of Toledo Bend as a crappie-fishing paradise. When the crappie begin to move away from the spawning areas, Keith Acker knows exactly where to…read more

New fisheries demand advance prep, time on the water

May 4, 2021

By Greg McCain Breaking down a new fishery is something common to crappie fishing. While some fishermen stick with the comfort of home waters, others like the challenge of new and different venues. Competition also takes crappie anglers away from home sweet home and forces them to adjust to unfamiliar settings. So what is the…read more

Rend Lake Buckbrush: Love it or hate it

April 21, 2021

By Greg McCain Fred Mooney acknowledges a love-hate relationship with the buckbrush on Rend Lake. The gnarly plant is a crappie haven in the spring, providing the best of habitat for spawning purposes. Few lakes have as much buckbrush as Rend, the 18,900-acre fishery in southern Illinois. “It’s basically what made Rend Lake famous,” said…read more

Big Crappie Bash An Overwhelming Success

April 13, 2021

By Greg McCain Rusty Proffitt and Jamie Mitchell live in prime crappie country in east Tennessee. They normally fish lakes like Douglas or Cherokee near their home in Morristown. Yet when they heard of the ACC Crappie Stix Big Crappie Bash presented by Crappie Cove, they knew a trip to Watts Bar Lake was in…read more

ACC, Crappie Cove team to stage unique tournament

April 2, 2021

By Greg McCain Tournaments abound in the current crappie culture. Hardly a week goes by without a major event held somewhere across the country, mainly in the Southeast, with the standard format pitting teams with the goal of catching the greatest weight from a 7-fish limit of crappie. The current explosive growth of crappie fishing…read more

Where to find trophy crappie?

April 1, 2021

By Greg McCain Size is relative in crappie fishing. One man’s trophy is another man’s cull. So just what constitutes a trophy? Where do you find them? How do you catch them? I asked those questions and more of several members of the ACC Crappie Stix pro staff. Some of their responses were fairly predictable…read more

Spring Crappie Tackle Set-Ups

March 25, 2021

By Greg McCain Mention crappie fishing tackle, and stock images of wispy rods, tiny reels, and gossamer line emerge from the past. In a more modern sense, crappie fishing tackle – specifically rods, reels, and line – has evolved far beyond the ultra-light gear of yesterday and comes in a variety of lengths, strengths, and…read more

Cork-and-minnow crappie fishing

March 19, 2021

By Greg McCain In the advanced high-tech world of modern crappie fishing, one very basic technique remains largely unchanged and among the most effective for spring fishing. The technique does not require modern electronics or a boat or even a rod-n-reel. We’re talking cork-and-minnow fishing or some slight variation thereof. A hook, a small split…read more

What It Takes To Become a Successful Pro Crappie Angler

March 16, 2021

By Greg McCain Here at ACC Crappie Stix, we’re intrigued by the mindset of the consistently successful crappie tournament fishermen. In fact, we’ve discussed the concept on more than one occasion as we planned stories for this blog. What are the things, the qualities, and the attributes that distinguish the ultra-successful tournament competitor from the…read more

Crappie Pre-Spawn: 5 Things to Know

March 2, 2021

By Greg McCain  In many parts of the country, that phase of early-season crappie fishing known as the pre-spawn is in full swing.  The fish have endured — in most cases thrived — through harsh winter conditions and are starting to heed the instinctive urges of procreation, heading toward the spawning grounds. Of course, our…read more

Johnson experiences thrill of narrow win in Magnolia event

March 1, 2021

By Greg McCain Most competitive fishermen have endured the deflated feeling of losing a tournament by a fraction of an ounce. ACC pro staff member Shane Johnson got to experience the opposite feeling Saturday (Feb. 27). Fishing in the Magnolia Crappie Club tournament on Lake Washington in the Mississippi Delta, Shane and team partner Scott…read more

Should New Technologies Prompt Changes In Crappie Conservation?

February 25, 2021

By Greg McCain Conservation issues involving crappie populations have been a hot-button topic through the first two months this year. In fact, the debate has raged among fishermen in some states, most notably in Texas, while others are only slowly entering the fray. Regardless of location, the suggestion of imposing more stringent size and creel…read more

The Lithium vs Lead Battery Debate

February 23, 2021

By Greg McCain As technology advances, powering motors and electronic units at optimum efficiency remains a need for all fishermen. Whether cranking, trolling, or LiveScoping, batteries are an important but often overlooked element in the overall success of any fishing trip. We’ve all experienced the click of a near-dead or improperly connected cranking battery.  We…read more

Pandemic kindles renewed interest in the outdoors

February 12, 2021

By Greg McCain To risk the understatement of the century, 2020 was a decidedly different year. With a world-wide pandemic as the backdrop, the world changed before our eyes. Families hunkered down in their homes, changing their normal routines while waiting out the COVID virus. Businesses feared the worst, and at least some of them…read more

Gibson & King Seal The Deal in Florida Crappie Masters

February 10, 2021

By Greg McCain If a third-place finish in one of Florida’s initial 2021 crappie tournaments felt good for ACC Crappie Stix pro staff member Brad Gibson, a first-place finish felt even better. The Okeechobee guide finished the deal in his latest event, winning the Crappie Masters Florida Crappie Trail tournament on Lake Okeechobee last Saturday…read more

Ice Fishing Tackle Tips To Catch More Crappie

February 9, 2021

By Greg McCain Ice fishing is a time-honored tradition among a certain segment of northern anglers. Fishermen by the thousands take to the ice each year, and the practice continually evolves in terms of equipment, tackle, and techniques. Veterans follow the trends and regularly upgrade their equipment and accessories to better practice their craft, in…read more

ACC pro staffers post solid Florida finishes

January 30, 2021

By Greg McCain The abundant crappie fisheries of Florida serve as home waters for a few ACC pro staffers and as something of a home-away-from-home for others. That scenario played out last weekend (Jan. 22-23) as pro staff members posted solid finishes in tournaments on two classic Sunshine State crappie venues.  Versatile guide Brad Gibson…read more

Crappie Fishing Fools thrives through digital harmony

January 26, 2021

By Greg McCain As the owner of an aquatics business, Dane Myers well knows the delicate balance necessary to maintain a thriving marine environment. One of his latest business endeavors requires a similar balancing act. Instead of combining the chemicals and other ingredients that produce a flourishing aquarium, Dane finds himself juggling personalities, companies, and…read more

5 more things about LiveScope

January 20, 2021

By Greg McCain 5 more things about LiveScope with Keith Acker Louisiana angler and ACC Crappie Stix pro staff member Keith Acker turned on to the potential of LiveScope technology just over a year ago, and the move prompted some productive changes in his approach to crappie fishing. Keith experienced the initial skepticism when Garmin…read more

Crappie bite stays hot even in cold weather

January 15, 2021

By Greg McCain Crappie fishing is a seasonal affair for many anglers. They await the annual movement of fish from deep to shallow in the spring, catch a few limits, put some fillets in the freezer, and then retire their crappie tackle until the next year. What these fishermen ignore is the idea that the…read more

5 top patterns at ACC Owners Tournament

November 26, 2020

By Greg McCain The play-the-wind pattern dominated the first ACC Crappie Stix Owners Tournament on Lake Fork. A cold front swept through east Texas and brought sustained winds of about 20 mph with gusts up to about 30. While the cold that accompanied the front didn’t set in until after the tournament, the wind played…read more

Lone Star Warriors Outdoors

November 23, 2020

By Greg McCain Almost all combat veterans experience PTSD to some degree. The stress of combat exerts its influence over some soldiers for weeks and months. For others, PT (post traumatic stress disorder) is a daily plague that hangs over their lives for years. It surfaces in various ways, and  unfortunately leads to suicidal tendencies…read more

5 reasons to own an ACC Crappie Stix

November 18, 2020

Since entering the market roughly six years ago, ACC Crappie Stix have become an industry standard with their innovation, quality, and customer service. Some people simply call them the “green rods”; others see them as a tool durable and dependable enough to use on a daily basis. We surveyed owner Andy Lehman and president of…read more

Innovative designs, quality products fuel Cornfield Crappie’s explosion

November 12, 2020

By Greg McCain The connection between a struggling machine shop and the crappie community seems tenuous at best. Owner Mark Ridl started Production Tooling and Automation in Illinois in 1997, doing tool work and fabricating components for vehicles. When cuts and lost contracts in the automotive industry impacted the company about six years ago, Ridl…read more

Branson reveals true nature of ACC Staffers

November 6, 2020

By Greg McCain The Wally Marshall Mr. Crappie Classic and Crappie Expo, held in late October in Branson, MO, brought together the best and the brightest in the crappie world. Both competitors and products were on display. While the weather dictated horrible practice and tournament conditions on Table Rock Lake, the Expo was a showcase…read more

Visiting Mississippi’s Big 4: Longbranch has them covered

November 3, 2020

By Greg McCain Some fishermen are blessed with a quality crappie lake near their home. Make that quadrupled blessed for Longbranch Guide Service. The Longbranch guides  – ACC pro staff members Tim Howell, Brian Fletcher, and Kevin Stockbridge – take advantage of their location in the middle of Mississippi’s Big 4 on the I-55 corridor…read more

5 Things Guides Are Asked

October 27, 2020

We recently polled the ACC pro staff about the following idea: What are the Top 5 questions guides get asked? The guides among the ranks, along with others who are technically not guides but still a member of the pro staff, provided some fairly predictable answers, and a few unusual ones. Various guides provided the…read more

The Crappie Cowboy

October 14, 2020

In an age of specialization, multi-sport athletes have become almost obsolete. Craig Nichols is a throwback to a time when athletes not only competed but also thrived in multiple sporting endeavors. Craig doesn’t perform in one of the mainstream sports. He’s not a Bo Jackson or a Deon Sanders or a Jim Thorpe from an…read more

Team Phillips: Family, Firefighting, Fishing

October 7, 2020

By Greg McCain The passion for family, firefighting, and fishing runs deep for Jonathan Phillips. The ACC Crappie Stix pro staff member and guide has long been a fixture on local tournament circuits in the central Alabama region, and he has acquitted himself well in national events also. Check tournament results, and the name Phillips…read more

5 Things Learned From Livescope

October 1, 2020

By Greg McCain First introduced at ICast in 2018, Garmin’s Panoptix LiveScope has revolutionized crappie fishing over the last two years. Part of the continual evolution of fishing technology, the electronics package provides fishermen with a visual underwater picture unparalleled up to this point. Fishermen can pinpoint individual fish, including those of specific sizes and…read more

Milligan’s ‘three-buses oxbow’ produces in ACT debut

September 24, 2020

By Greg McCain (Here’s the second of two parts on ACC Crappie Stix pro staff member Les Milligan’s debut in a national tournament, the ACT event on the Ouachita River near West Monroe, LA, in late August. In Part 1  (Not even a hurricane slows Milligan in national debut), Les relates the weather-related adventures leading up…read more

Not even a hurricane slows Milligan in national debut

September 20, 2020

By Greg McCain (Here’s the first of two parts on ACC Crappie Stix pro staff member Les Milligan’s debut in a national tournament, the ACT event on the Ouachita River in late August. In Part 1, Les relates the weather-related adventures leading up to and during the tournament. Coming soon, Part 2 provides details and…read more

Why We Started and Where We’re Going – ACC Crappie Stix

September 9, 2020

By Greg McCain Andy Lehman was going bass fishing when he first determined the world needed a better crappie rod. A competitive bass fisherman at the time, Andy was headed to Mississippi to fish a tournament, and he wanted to sample some of that state’s vaunted crappie fisheries while there. He borrowed crappie-fishing tackle from…read more

If You’re Not Dock Shooting for Crappie, You Are Missing Out

March 8, 2020

Although it’s truly hard to think like a fish, the fact is that crappie, have some predictable likes and dislikes. Namely, they like cover and they like shade. So do the bait fish that crappie feed on…which makes crappie like cover and shade even more. Certainly throughout the summer, docks offer crappie the cover and…read more

Summertime Kayaking tips.

July 4, 2019

Summer Crappie Kayak Fishing             In the spring time in North Texas, the creeks are as full of kayaks as they are of bank fishermen. Bobbers are almost as plentiful as the spawning crappie. As the temps soar into the triple digits, the bank fishermen disappear and the kayaks move out of the creeks, along…read more