HogFarmer Baits Hair Jig

It’s officially June 1st. I think it’s safe to assume there are fishes on the ledges out on the TN River.   I’m no ledge fishing expert, but here is what I know:  You have to have multiple tools in your toolkit, once you locate a school of fish.  The fish get tuned into your bait after you hook 3-5 fish.  You have to switch it up to keep getting bit.

The hair jig is one of the oldest school baits you can throw these days. I fished round headed hair jigs with Uncle Josh Pork Frogs on the back on Bull Shoals lake in the late 80s/early 90s time frame.   I know they catch fish. I hammered fish on the hair jig.

Scott Schauwecker and HogFarmer Baits are legit.  Scott sent me a bunch of his HogFarmer Umbrella Rigs.  Something I intend to show and share.  They are killer and are exactly what I like in umbrella rigs.  His hair jig came to my attention recently, and I took some time to cast it and feel it and film it.  Hair jigs have a different vortex.  They have a real glide to them as they fall thru the water.  They fall on a different plane than rubber/synthetic skirts.  The hair jig has a consistent size and shape vs. rubber that tends to ‘squid’ and distort.   It’s got a great shad/baitfish profile that just works. It pulses along as it swims.  The hair moves and pulses, but it’s far less dramatic than the swim of rubber skirts.  Hair has a natural flow in water that is more subtle and quiet, but nice and bulky and sleek.

HogFarmer Hair jigs are made with synthetic bear hair, krystal flash, and real bear hackle feathers.  The colors are legit.  Lemon Shad reminded me of a good TN River threadfin shad color, with the chartreuse stripe.  I like the 3/4 ounce. I would suggest he make a 1 and 1.5 ounce baits too!  I like ’em heavier than most.

Trailers/Customizations

Definitely you can cut the hair, thin it out, or create a tail.  I’m fairly certain a good trailers for a bait like this are: Keitech’s, BassTrix, Skinny Dippers, Big Hammers, Straight tailed Worms split down the center, Flukes, or Senkos.   The added bulk will give you more weight, more swim, more glide, etc.  The heavier your jig head, the better your trailer swims on the fall/sink.  Unless you are looking for glide, in which case, lighter tends to be better than heavier.

Stroking

Hell yes.  Rip this bait off the bottom and let it fall back.  That is the #1 application of the HogFarmer Hair Jig that I’d have in mind. I’d find a school of fish and use this as one of my tools to fire up the school, and show them something fresh and new.  I find switching from Big Hammer to Omega Remitz Football Jig to Magnum Speed Worms and then Umbrella Rigs of course.

Swimming

You should definitely swim a hair jig like you would any other swimbait you fish mid water column.  Whenever you find fish and need to show them something fresh or just explore how big a bait they’ll eat or really try to dial them in…Hair jigs are super old school.  The theme reminds me of “Ken’s Vortex” conversations.  The hair jig has a different footprint and vibration than rubber jigs and it swims and glides different.  It gets bit.

Purchase from Tackle Warehouse

Purchase from Tackle Warehouse

 

 

The Deps Slide Swimmer 175 Blue Back Herring

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This may be completely “duh” to some people, but I am still acquiring my arsenal of glide baits and learning how to properly fish them in all sorts of places.  The Deps Slide Swimmer 175 is a killer medium sized swimbait that is going to catch you quality and quantity.  If I lived in Georgia and fished the Blue Back Herring bite, I would be all about the Deps Slide Swimmer 175 (SS175) in the Blue Back Herring color.  This bait is 7.5″ long and weighs 3 ounces.   It fishes like a a ‘fluke’.

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Herring Eaters

May – June tends to be awesome time for the herring eaters.  I think the bite goes thru the summer, you just have to adjust and fish thru crowds and the heat.   Fish this thing on a medium 8′ swimbait rod, 65# Braided line (direct tie) and a 200 or 300 series 7.1 or 6.3:1 low profile reels.

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Applications / Approaches for Herring Eaters with the Slide Swimmer 175 Blue Back Herring:

Docks-Fish the seawalls in between docks and long runs of seawalls anywhere you can find them. Especially early morning bite.  Cover water with the Slide Swimmer.  You can have a lot of fun high sticking with braided line and really pumping your bait upward so the glide breaks the surface.   Then stall it out and let it just die.  Or just parallel good sections and fish it slow and steady, sorta spinner bait style.

The Slide Swimmer is an amazing bait.  I don’t care how you fish it.  You can really jerkbait/fluke style fish it.  So around certain docks, you could even pitch it into open slots and fish it out and draw out a biggun.   I would stall it around shade spots, and just use it pull fish out from under floating docks.  Fish the windy / outer side of anything if you get the chance.

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Points-I would fish the Slide Swimmer 175 Blue Back Herring like a mad man on places like Lake Murray or Clarks Hill.  I would run and gun as many red clay points and just good rocky points I could hit.   I would spin around and fish way offshore those points. I found fishing over grass that was 15-12 feet deep with a Triple Trout a really good way to catch quality fish on Clarks Hill.  I think the Slide Swimmer 175 would do some real damage on the herring lakes if a guy knew where the fish were.  Herring eaters are hard to find and stay on.   You gotta be able to fish up shallow then pull off the point, fish ontop, fish double fluke rigs, etc to pull ’em up.  The SS175 is going to be another tool in your tool kit.

Red Clay

Red Clay

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Notice, the 175 next to the 250 Slide Swimmer.  The 250 has fins on the belly, the 175 does not have those same fins.

Notice, the 175 next to the 250 Slide Swimmer. The 250 has fins on the belly, the 175 does not have those same fins.

 

The Tail of the 175 vs. the 250 Slide Swimmer.  More of a Cleaver than the 250s tail.

The Tail of the 175 vs. the 250 Slide Swimmer. More of a Cleaver than the 250s tail.

BrushPiles- I always think of Ryan Coleman from Flowery Branch, GA when I think of brush piles.  I hired Ryan to take me fishing on Lake Lanier.  He took me to some brushpiles and showed me the how they do it with the FishHead Spin over the brush piles.   It was really cool to see how Ryan had the brush pile game down.  I told him we’d be shot for cutting down a tree in California.  I would suck at creating brushpiles.    But if you know where there are brush piles, I would fish this bait over those brush piles, like you would your Zara Spook or GunFish.

Brush pile revealed by low water.  Clarks Hill 2008.

Brush pile revealed by low water. Clarks Hill 2008.

Laydown Trees of course, too.

Man Made Structures – Whatever you do, DO NOT fish this bait around dams, big concrete pump houses, around bridge pilings.   You will probably get your arm broke!

Smallmouth/Spotted Bass – Because this is a ‘medium’ sized swimbait, it makes it extremely attractive to guys who hunt big smallmouth. And spotted beasts. Spotted bass that eat herring are different than largemouth that eat herring.    All I know is, the SS175 is a great selection when you have spotted or smallmouth basses on your agenda.

Saltwater –  The BlueBack Herring is descendant the saltwater run herring.  Herring are a great bait offshore in Southern California. I plan on feeding some calico bass, white sea bass, and yellowtail some Slide Swimmer 175 this summer.

 

 

Purchase from Tackle Warehouse Now:

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2014 Year In Photos

Gone!  Another year wiser, and feeling better than ever.

Gone! Another year wiser, and feeling better than ever.

Okay, it’s time for that year end summary.  2014 I didn’t fish a whole lot. Not gonna lie.  Another ‘transition’ year for me, settling back into Southern California life.  I’ve learned many new things in 2014, and few of them relate at all to fishing.  The one biggest lesson in fishing from 2014 I will carry forward is the lethal nature of glide baits.  The Slide Swimmer 250 namely blew my mind.   I saw my buddy Cameron Smith call fish out from deep tule clumps with the Slide Swimmer.  He was literally flipping and pitching it into little whole and stalling/twitching it out on braid and did some amazing things to pull fish out.  I spent a few weeks on the White River in Arkansas.  Let me tell you, the Slide Swimmer 250 did more damage in one day than I did in 6 months living in Arkansas!   There is a sweet spot for a bait that can be swam, stalled, and power fished in heavy current situations.

My dad was with me when I hooked a GIANT brown trout on the Slide Swimmer 250 and followed up with one more in the boat, and one more pulled off.  Crazy good day of bigbait/big fish hunting on the White River.  Blazing July heat, but it burns so good with that 50 degree river water.

My dad was with me when I hooked a GIANT brown trout on the Slide Swimmer 250 and followed up with one more in the boat, and one more pulled off. Crazy good day of bigbait/big fish hunting on the White River. Blazing July heat, but it burns so good with that 50 degree river water. Promar Nets become livewells in small river boats.

 

My PB brown trout.  Stoked to say the least.

My PB brown trout. Stoked to say the least.

 

Otay Session with my boy Cameron Smith.  Slide Swimmer 250, 80# braid and the LDC 8 XH rod.

Otay Session with my boy Cameron Smith. Slide Swimmer 250, 80# braid and the LDC 8 XH rod.

The Hobie Alter Memorial Service.  Fare you well Hobie.  We love you in these parts.

The Hobie Alter Memorial Service. Fare you well Hobie. We love you in these parts.

 

There is this event called Stagecoach that happens out in the desert.  I don't plan on missing Stagecoach going forward. I felt really cool and awesome. There is a serious shortage of men at this event, and many cowgirls, which was a good problem to have.

There is this event called Stagecoach that happens out in the desert. I don’t plan on missing Stagecoach going forward. I felt really cool and awesome. There is a serious shortage of men at this event, and many cowgirls, which was a good problem to have.

Spent a day with Kevin Mattson.  The Bass King.  Kevin is fricking awesome and really had a fun day shooting film and just fishing.

Spent a day with Kevin Mattson. The Bass King. Kevin is fricking awesome and really had a fun day shooting film and just fishing.

 

Got Hard Drives?  Yes, I'm working on DVD #2.  Video editing is really hard and time consuming.  2015, I hope to release #2

Got Hard Drives? Yes, I’m working on DVD #2. Video editing is really hard and time consuming. 2015, I hope to release #2

Xmas-2014-Peters

Xmas 2014. Good to be home. Surround yourself with family and good friends.

 

I don't dream of weighing in 30 pound sacks on Okeechobee anymore. I enjoy fishing from shore, wading, and small boats.  The bang bang of bass fishing can be exhausting, but you have to chase your dreams, if that's you're dream.  So go for it.

I don’t dream of weighing in 30 pound sacks on Okeechobee anymore. I enjoy fishing from shore, wading, and small boats. The bang bang of bass fishing can be exhausting, but you have to chase your dreams.  So go for it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Buzz Hammer and Persuader Buzzbaits

I love fishing buzzbaits.  Adding swimbait tails to buzzbaits and spinnerbaits isn’t super new, but I’m unclear what guys actually use. I have always liked the Persuader Clacker Buzzbait.  I have caught big fish on buzzbaits, especially ones with clackers.  I love a black buzzbait with clack and a big ole ugly bait on the back, like a big Skinny Dipper or Zoom Lizard.   I have done really well, on the opposite end of the spectrum, with the Buzz Hammer.  The Buzz Hammer is smaller, more finesse, and quiet buzzbait that makes adding a swimbait tail really easy.

The Persuader Clacker Buzzbait

Skinny Dipper Swimbait Tail (trailer)

 

The Persuader Clackin' Buzzbait with the full size Skinny Dipper as a trailer bait

The Persuader Clackin’ Buzzbait with the full size Skinny Dipper as a trailer bait

A more finesse approach, the Buzz Hammer is a softer gurgle and the Big Hammer Square Tailed swimmer is a catchy little swimbait.

A more finesse approach, the Buzz Hammer is a softer gurgle and the Big Hammer Square Tailed swimmer is a catchy little swimbait.

The Buzz Hammer fishes really well with a 3″ Big Hammer Swimbait Tail.  The head on the Buzz Hammer designed to receive the Big Hammer Swimbait Tail, so naturally there is good fit and swim. I wish there was 3/4 and 1 ounce (or bigger) sized Buzz Hammers with bigger hooks and heads to accept the Sledge Hammer and just bigger paddled tailed swimmers out there.   You need to ‘bigbait’ your buzzbaits is my thought.

The Little Dipper on the Buzz Hammer looks awfully good, and is a great clear water/pressured fish approach to buzzbait fishing

The Little Dipper on the Buzz Hammer looks awfully good, and is a great clear water/pressured fish approach to buzzbait fishing.

 

 

Clack Clack Clack-----Blam!  The small willow leaf blade on the Persuader Buzzbait adds flash, but most importantly a good clack. I have caught a lot of fish on this buzzbait. It runs true and wakes 'em up.

Clack Clack Clack—–Blam! The small willow leaf blade on the Persuader Buzzbait adds flash, but most importantly a good clack. I have caught a lot of fish on this buzzbait. It runs true and wakes ’em up.

I’m probably a month too late for some folks, but it’s surprising how well fish eat topwater baits, like buzzbaits as the winter sets in. Fish eat moving and reaction baits way better in cold water, when the water is in a cooling trend.  For example, 52 degree water that is falling from the summertime highs is NOT the same 52 degree water that is warming from 42 or wherever you lake bottoms out.  It’s relative of course, but think about cold water that was warm and figure those fish are better active chasers and hunters, than cold water that is only slightly warmer than the bottom out temps.

The Buzz Hammer, aka, Buzz Hamster.  Rigged with a 3" Big Hammer Swimbait Tail, of course.

The Buzz Hammer, aka, Buzz Hamster. Rigged with a 3″ Big Hammer Swimbait Tail, of course.

 

Buzzbait fishing is badapple.  You need to be throwing the Whopper Plopper if you haven’t seen it. This is what I’m talking about, bringing some bigbait into your buzzbait.

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Click to Purchase the Persuader Clacker Buzzbait

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Click to purchase the Buzz Hammer

 

Lucky Craft Blade Cross Bait

Here is some more fusion.  The Lucky Craft Blade Cross Bait you have to check out.  This thing really fuses the jerkbait, underspin, spinnerbait, and swimbait thing together.  I really like how neutrally buoyant this thing feels in general. It sinks out, but any slight tension flattens the bait out and you can get a near suspend with any bow or wind in your line.  Very senko-ish in feel.  You can rip rip rip and then stall this thing and just be totally stoked at this jerkbait, flash, spin, stall stuff this bait produces. You can slow grind out and transition out of your jerkbait cadance, and get more swimbait style.  Just slow grind it along, mindfully.

The Lucky Craft Blade Cross is pretty impressive.  They make a 110 size which tells me there has to be bigger / saltwater size of these things!  I want a 200 or 300 series!!!

The Lucky Craft Blade Cross is pretty impressive. They make a 110 size which tells me there has to be bigger / saltwater size of these things! I want a 200 or 300 series!!!

 

I think jerkbaits catch fish all year long, but as winter sinks in, and then again right before Spring springs….the jerkbait is king.  I can see smashing fish on the Ozark lakes on this bait.  Where ever you have a good reaction bait bite.  Lake Mead/Havasu come to mind.  I can see the herring eaters going nutty about this bait, especially those spotted bass herring eaters that love spinnerbaits and jerkbaits so much.  Lanier, Clarks Hill, Murray, Keowee, Hartwell —those lakes come to mind as well suited for this bait.  All clear water lakes, that is for sure.  And anywhere you know fish react to jerkbaits, well shoot, I would just tie one of these on and give a try, because this thing fishes sick.  There is no doubt you’ll enjoy and appreciate this bait.  It almost has a glide bait feel to it, and has so many other influences, I was impressed.

Purchase

CLICK TO PURCHASE

This is a modern twist on jerkbait, spinnerbait and swimming baits and if you think about it, is a bit of a sister to the spy bait thing.  The spy baits have the props and the whirring of their blades creates a new unique vortex.  So does the Blade Cross Bait.  Very unique swim signature and profile. Lucky Craft makes quality baits and this is no exception. I notice these things tend to be low in quantity and stock in Tackle Warehouse often.  That is usually a good indicator.

Fusion of jerkbait, spinnerbait, underspin and swimbait.  Pretty rad bait.

Fusion of jerkbait, spinnerbait, underspin and swimbait. Pretty rad bait.

 

Purchase the Lucky Craft Blade Cross Bait HERE