Welcome to Tight Lines Guide Service.  We are a year-round crappie fishing guide service on Lake Shelbyville and Clinton Lake.  We will provide everything you need to enjoy a day of crappie fishing. All you need to bring is a valid Illinois fishing license, appropriate clothing for the weather we are expecting that day i.e. rain gear, sunscreen, hat, sunglasses, and whatever food you would like for the day.  We will provide a cooler with ice and water for the day.

Lake Shelbyville is located across both Shelby and Moultrie counties in central Illinois.  It is an 11,000 acre Army Corps of Engineers flood control reservoir.  Clinton Lake is located in DeWitt county approximately 10 miles east of Clinton IL.  Clinton is a power plant lake and is used as a cooling water source for Clinton Power Station which makes the water warmer and can be an oasis in the middle of winter when all the other lakes are frozen solid.  Both lakes offer excellent crappie populations.

“My fishing memories are many. But treasured most of all are those fishing trips when all appeared hopeless, and then crappie came to the rescue.” – Dan Gapen


Fishing Report

December 30, 2021

Lake Shelbyville Crappie Fishing Guide

Lake Shelbyville is always an excellent bite in the winter time all the way up until you can’t get a boat on it.  It’s an awesome time to get out there and enjoy the lake without all the crowds.  The only boats out there are us diehards and it’s very peaceful.   Today, I took a break from fishing to watch a bald eagle swoop down and snatch a fish from the surface and take it up to a perch to eat.  It was very cool as after he finished his meal he flew over me crisscrossing a cove from perch to perch.

We have been catching a lot of fish and the quality right now is very good.  Water temp was 41 today and water color was a little muddy brown with clarity differing from spot to spot.  The clearest water I found today was about 12 inches.  We are catching fish 16-30 feet deep on some kind of structure whether it be stumps, brush piles, cubes or whatever else is down there.  Productive lures have been Midsouth Tackle tube jigs in pink/chartreuse and orang/chartreuse paired with a pink or white 1/4 oz. Deep Ledge Jig Head.  I have also been rotating in a Bobby Garland Baby Shad in BBQ Chicken color for a plastic.   Pendulum tossing, deadsticking, and the tease and raise have been triggering bites.

I do not have a Clinton Lake report right now.

Like I said above winter time is an awesome time to get out there and really load the boat!  If you’re a single pole jig fisherman then right now is your time to get out there and feel that thump baby!  Give me a call, text or message to book a trip today!

Dan Lange


[email protected]









These rates are for a private charter for up to two people, add an additional $100 for a third person.
All children 16 and under must be accompanied by an adult.

$400 for 8 hours

$300 for 6 hours

$250 for 4 hours

phone: 217.475.1499

email: [email protected]

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