When asked to pick a sleeper lake for fall crappie in North Carolina, Ed Duke recommended Shearon Harris, just southeast of Jordan. Duke said the lake is not big by reservoir standards, around 4,000 acres, and it’s not really deep, which makes it easier to fish that other lakes.

“Shearon Harris has a lot of coves that indent the creeks that feed the lake,” Duke said. “The mouths of those coves will hold a lot of crappie during the fall. Just look for any kind of wood, rock, or even weed cover and that’s where you’ll locate fish this time of year.”

Duke said some days he will long-line, and other days he will tight-line these areas, the primary difference is if he has enough running room to maneuver the boat for long-lining.

Rod Wall’s pick for a fall sleeper in South Carolina is Lake Secession on the Anderson/Abbeville County border, just upstream from Lake Russell. Wall said the lake is often covered up by boats in the spring when the dogwoods are blooming, but nearly vacant after college football and deer season crank up.

“Secession has a lot of structure in it,” said Wall, “from brush piles to boat docks to old standing timber. It’s also not a hard lake to fish. It’s only about 6 miles long, and you can try a lot of different techniques until you hit on what’s working at the time.”

Wall said Secession gets the nod because it is a very fertile lake that produces some quality fish as well as numbers of fish.

“It’s a great long-lining lake because it’s kind of riverine in nature, and in the upper end you can go a long way in that 15-foot and under water and find fish the whole way,” he said. “On the other hand, you can get in one of the bends in the river or one of the few creek that feed the lake and tight-line troll structure going from brush pile to brush pile.”

Wall said Secession features a lot of floating docks on its lower end; many will have some kind of structure placed underneath, making for a good opportunity for shooting docks.