June 27, 2002

Outdoor Corner

by Chris Feeney

Any avid fisherman out there knows that rumors of new magic baits circulate through the anglers circles quicker than that top recipe makes it into grandma's famous cookbook. Of course both comparisons there are somewhat unusual as most fisherman are as protective of their top lures as grandma is of her pie crust secret ingredients. Then again if you eat enough of that pie, you'll do what it takes to get a sneak peak into the kitchen to learn the magic touch.

Fortunately for me this week I didn't have to perform an espionage to learn about a secret weapon that turned into a 30+ bass evening for a friend and I. I hope he doesn't mind me passing on his friendly little tip to the rest of the world, and I'm quite certain the people at Bass Pro won't mind at all. As a matter of fact maybe I should send them a copy of this free advertising and see if it could be turned into a couple free packages of what I'm ready to brag about. Honestly that's not a bad idea. They might send me tackle to use so that I can review it in the newspaper and encourage you to buy it, or possibly even tell you to save your money for something better.

There's no saving your money on this item, as a matter of fact I ordered about three times as many packages as I normally do on a new item. But the Tournament Series Stik-O plastic jerkbait looks to be well worth the added space in the tackle box. While it's called a jerkbait, I would describe it more like a plastic worm since that's basically how we fished it to its greatest success last week. The lure is just a hair under six inches in length and is loaded with salt as well as the Yum fish attractant.

We fished this magic bait Carolina rig style, slipped onto a hook like a plastic worm complete with a weight above the bait. The Stik-O has a much more attractive sinking action and also creates a zig-zag type motion when you retrieve it, making it very effective on suspended fish. Of course on Wednesday night it was effective on about everything under the water. Using the infinite fishing wisdom in our boat we never changed a thing in our presentation but we've been told the lure can also be very effective without a weight, giving it even more flashy action and less sink.

The downside for anglers (and the upside for the manufacturers) is the fish like these things so much you're going to go through a bag of 20 pretty quick. I also believe that the fish are so hungry for the Stik-O that several times I had a fish on without getting a hook in him. On numerous occasions I had strikes and even began reeling in the bass only to have them release the bait and swim on.

Then again that did sometimes work to my advantage. I may be the world's worst worm-fisherman. I have trouble judging a bite and go through streaks of setting the hook on any little snag and then sitting motionless as I miss strike after strike. With the Stik-O there really is little doubt whether you have a fish or not. The only time there is any question is when the bass sucks up the bait and then swims right at you. Normally that's bad, because by the time you realize he's on, the fish has spit out a normal worm. Not with the Stik-O. That bass isn't letting go. He could swim all the way to the other side of the boat and do a couple back flips and he'd still have hold of the lure to allow you to catch him.

Okay so all of you fishermen should rush out and buy a truckload of this new bait - No I don't own a bunch of stock options in the company. Then again, if they don't work for you, I'm on the line for my promotions.Maybe it's not the bait but the fishermanÖ? Naaaaa, must be the bait.

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