LOOKS NORMAL, but it’s really not.

I know we all have foul weather gear, thermals and insulated gloves, but sometimes after being out “in it” for several hours, don’t we ask ourselves what was I thinking? Wouldn’t some of this off-season be better served with a different use of our time?

How about we learn something we maybe didn’t know or fully understand? How about expanding our thinking on lures and methods we often take for granted?

For me, that’s been taking a second look at the Triggerfish topwater bait introduced a couple of seasons back. Topwater you ask? No, I’m not trying to get a bite on the bait right now, I’m trying to figure out how it can get me more bites later in the year.

Unfortunately, there has been a stumbling block. Although this is a true “steerable lure” featuring the ability to suddenly change directions on the fly, it looks funny!

Oh, in the package, it appears to be some kind of jerk bait or shallow runner. But it’s not.

Conflicted view

WHAT’S WITH that jointed head?

It actually floats on its side and because its head is on a hinge, it lays over in the water like a dead sardine. Throw in its line tie is in the dorsal position, it doesn’t matter that it has a cool clear prop on the tail–it’s just weird.

tail prop


But that’s until you–emphasize YOU–kick this thing into action. It takes some rod manipulation that is not what you are used to doing, but in reality, it’s no harder than walking the dog–which remember, was kind of strange in its own way when we first learned it.

However, I’m not going to try and paint a word picture. Nope. I want you to look at the latest instructional video–and not just once. Give yourself time (it runs about 11 minutes) to study it through at least twice. There are no jumping giants, flashing lights, rockin’ riffs or hollaring. Just a clear view of what it takes to make this lure come alive.

C’mon. It’s the off-season now. Later on you can add your own sound effects and video come the regular season.





8 Responses to “Reason for the off-season: Learn something”

After watching the video, I’m going to order a couple of these and give them a shot. I have a hard time using spooks as the rod tip keeps hitting the water when I try to walk the dog. With the trigger fish it looks like I can use an upward action with the rod tip. I hate being short!

Thanks George for the update on something completely new. Just watching the video on this rainy morn.,conjures all kinds of possibilities! Ordering from T.W. now! Hope all is well, tight lines, Gene

The younger, hard-charging cadre of anglers prefers to make long casts, fish fast and cover miles of shoreline–and they have the goods to prove that works. But situationally, on waters that have more fish per linear stretch, or where fish see more conventional retrieves, this bait could make a big splash. But there is a learning curve.

Here’s a shout out to Darlene and anyone else who may be having trouble with spooks. Darlene, if you’re hitting the water with your rod, it’s probably just too long for you. The Spook walk is all about finesse. A Zara Spook requires a little sharper action than say a Sammy which is better in calmer conditions and can be glided in longer strokes. Don’t give up on the Spook! Old guys like Kramer and I (I’m much, much younger) did just fine without 7-foot rods. Let the bait go under after the strike, feel the weight of the fish and then set. Kramer was right beside me when I caught my biggest fish ever – on a Spook. I didn’t need the big stick, only a good net man.

Okay, I’ll use one of my old shorter rods and give it another shot, but another problem I have is that I hold the rod on the foregrip because my hands are too small to grip the reel like everyone else. Kind of hard to jerk/twitch holding the rod on the foregrip but I’ll try again.

I have an old, old 5’9″ 6 power Fenwick HMG graphite rod that I use for walking the dog. I use it with an older round Abu Garcia reel, but a low profile like a Revo would be more comfortable. Put some quality 14 lb. nylon monofilament line on there and go to town. I use a double improved clinch knot and pull the knot down to the bottom of the line tie. After that, it is practice, practice, practice. The funnest part is once you find the cadence the fish respond to, it is just about like you can make them bite it.

Maybe I should try a Snoopy or Barbie rod. 🙂

by George Kramer

Snoopy, eh? Then you can make them bite AND bark. 😉