Flyin' Al's great fishing lures
by Flyin Al G.
We all dream of the day we can buy a fishing lure with the assurance it will
attract strikes every time
we use it.
Just cast 'superlure' to your favorite spot with your favorite fishing pole
and whatever fish you want
to catch will jump on the line, happily and with little effort.
Ok, this is not fishing, it is called catching.
Catching fish every time may take the fun out of fishing,
but knowing you can catch a fish with a
specific lure can go a long way to preventing boredom when you wet the line.
One big problem with fishing lures is not whether they will, or will not
catch fish, but how you have
to fish the lure to get the fish to bite.
It is very important to have some idea what lure will attract what fish
under what conditions. You also
have to determine the lure size, color, running depth, and so on.
A good lure will work on multiple fish, in multiple water conditions, and
can be used at multiple
depths. There are some dynamite lures for specific types of fish, but this
will be covered in later articles.
These three lures have been the most productive of my tackle to get bites
different fishes. They have also taken the least 'practice' to use
the lures require no specific presentation.
Storm Rattlin' ChugBug
No other topwater lure has delivered so well with so many different types of
fish. I have only had my
ChugBug for a few months and it is one of the top producers of all my lures.
I have caught Bass (spotted, white, Guad, Large, Small), Panfish (perch,
bgill, crappie), and even had
a few strikes from fish in saltwater. I have seen them used for Walleye, and
they are proportedly
very effective in saltwater bays and inlets where water is not too deep.
I have caught fish in Winter, Spring, and Summer at all times of the day.
The beauty of this lure is the presentation - there is no right way.
After casting you can just pull the lure back if you want to. You can twitch
it, you can jerk the pole tip
and get it to 'walk the dog'. You can reel for a few feet, pause, jerk it,
reel, pause...anything you like!
On certain days, the lure will work better one way than another, but usually
you will at least get enough
short-strikes to know you are where fish are holding.
The lures come in three sizes, I call small (about 2 in), regular (about
3.5in) and large (5+in).
You can get them in a variety of colors, but generally the black/chrome or
green 'firebug' scheme
will work the best - I only have the chrome and black, but other swear by
the firebug color.
Chrome/black is more effective after dark while the firebug will work best
in deep, stained waters.
The ChugBugs come with two treble hooks - one barb pointing forward and
two pointing off to the rear side. This allows you to remove the leading
barb from the treble hooks
and make the ChugBug weedless! With the leading barbs removed, you can drag
across the top of weeds and lily pads and fish the big ones out of the goo
no one else is fishing in.
You can add a bit of weight to the shank of each treble hook and get
the ChugBug to suspend a few
inches under the surface of the water. This is especially effective when you
see swirls in the water
behind your ChugBug but you are not getting actual strikes.
Can't explain it, but the ole white spinnerbait seems to work the most. I
have had a white
Strike King for about 2 years now, and caught a ton of fish on it - not
monster fish though, we
are talking quantity more than quality with the white spinnerbait.
Like the ChugBug, there is little you have to know about *how* to fish the
spinnerbait, you can
usually generate a strike if you keep at it long enough.
I have caught Bass (large, small) and panfish with the white spinnerbait
when nothing else would
yield anything, and I have seen them used for every kind of fish with the
exception of Carp.
Spinnerbaits afford the fisherman a method to search the depths for the fish.
I start with a shallow run, about a foot under the surface. Try a slow pass,
fast pass, a few
pauses and jerks. Nothing? Try the same thing again about half way to the
Try the same thing near the bottom - maybe even bumping the bottom.
Try to cast to the same place as you change the depth of the presentation
and you may
find you get something on the third or forth cast. This is very deadly when
fishing shaded boat docks or overhanging trees.
Eventually you will find some fish. If you methodically keep track of the
approximate depth you are
running the bait at, you will find more fish in the same place after you get
a first strike.
This may take some time on the front end, but in under an hour, you can know
depth of the fish or at least where they are holding or looking for bait.
You can get spinner baits in a ton of sizes and colors, but I would recommend
a total of
four baits: 1 - chrome single blade, 1 - chrome dual-blade, 1 - gold single
blade, 1 - gold dual blade.
You can get skirts from any tackle store to change the colors of the
spinner baits if white is giving
you problems, but for a year-round color you cannot make a better selection
Put a crimp weight on the hook shank right before the bend of the hook.
This will cause the
spinnerbait to run deeper, allow you fish it faster, and it will fall
backwards when you pause it.
The fall on the pause is deadly for Bass, Stripers, and Cats.
In real deep water (over 50 feet) try jigging your dual blade spinners
over isolated structure.
Hit the bottom, reel up a few feet, let it fall slowly, and so on. Great
when you want to fish where
the other guy has been missing.
Instead of a trailer (like pork or plastics) use a scent. I use craw or
worm. I find the scent
does more to keep the fish on than a chunk of goo which makes the lure
You can use a second hook as a trailer hook if you need to. Take a
bait hook with a large
eye (like the Eagle 1/0 'baitholder' hooks) and thread it on the hook of the
It must be the fact that these crankbaits are made of wood. For some reason
you can catch
different fish on these than most crankbaits. With most of the crankbaits I
have, I catch
Largemouth bass. With the Poe's wooden crankbaits, I catch all kinds of bass
I know they are deadly for Stripers and can be used to troll in saltwater.
I have only one Poe's, a big green and chartreuse deep diver. Put
sixteen-pound test on the pole
and the lure will run at 10 feet - you can almost set your depth finder by
it! You can get it to
dive more by changing the line and retrieve if you need to.
The beauty here is that you only need to chuck the lure in the water, and
reel it back slowly.
Right after your cast, 'pull' the lure down to the desired depth, and after
that, just keep a slow
and constant cadence on the reel.
If you like to troll around and cast a lot to find fish, you cannot pick a
better lure to use. If you
cast around long enough, you will get a hit on the Poe's. Don't be surprised
if you caught a
fish you were not expecting.
Also, for largemouth and smallmouth bass the Poe's can yield some large
fish. It is especially
effective in deep water when you want the fish on the bottom to come to you.
Poe's crankbatis come in a myriad of sizes and colors. Any of them probably
work, but the
chartreuse deep diver has proven to be very effective.
On a normal fishing trip, I will use one or more of these lure to help me
'find' the fish. In many
cases I will not land any big fish on these lures, but I will be getting
bites, landing some fish, and
generally having a really good time.
The beauty is that it takes the guess-work out of finding where fish are.
Too many times we
spend the day floating over hundreds of quality fish looking for that
which will yield some monster lunker.
Got a question for Flyin' Al?
If you have any fishing or mountain biking questions for Flyin' Al,
you can send an email to:
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