A Very Deadly Lure

edited June 2005 in Catch Reports
In my previous post "GANG-BANGING AMERICAN RIVER SHAD", I mentioned that I acquired a
few component packs of mini-grub jigs yesterday. Last night, I prepped about 25 of those mini-grub
jigs and rigged up my 7-foot Abu-Garcia 1-piece trout rod, Shimano CX2500SQ reel spooled with
4-lb. test Trilene XL line. Drove over to the river at 6AM and as usual there were already fishermen
on the river after the Hickory shad! (Incidentally, the American Hickory shad is a close relative of the
S.E. Asia terubok (Asian shad) which is an endangered species as a result of over-fishing, destructon of
its spawning grounds and pollution.

  • Chinook
    I hiked downriver and found a spot between some tall brush and carefully waded into the cold waters of the
    American River. Since this was the 2nd time that I am using this mini-jig, I found it much more easier to
    cast in using my stiff, medium-heavy, 1-piece trout rod with just 2 size-7 BB's crimped about 3-feet above
    the jig. I soon latched onto a shad and the fight was on with the fish making spirited runs and leaps
    trying to shake the jig out from its mouth.

  • Chinook
    Trying to reel in a big struggling shad on a 4-lb. test line and also trying to photograph the action at the same
    time took quite a bit of finesse and timing on my part. As the shad rested between its wild runs and leaps,
    I would try to focus in and quickly snap a photograph. I can attest that a good number of my hooked shad
    got off the hook when I was in the process of snapping a photograph when it took initiated a sudden run
    and jumped out of the water which startled me in return.

  • Makaira
    Chinook" said:
    a few component packs of mini-grub jigs yesterday.
    Hi Chinook,

    These trusty good old Mr Twisty were my "go to" rubber lures when fishing for Walleye & all species of Bass when I was in Canada. They are deadly, but to some, not as "glamorous" as the Texas rigged worms for largemouth Bass when targetting them. Works just as good if not better under most conditions. Chartruese was my favorite colour!!! Along with the Mr Twisty, the perennial Blue Fox Vibrotail is another favorite of mine. :wink: The shads in Canada love them too.

    Best regards,
  • Chinook
    Makaira" said:
    Hi Chinook,
    These trusty good old Mr Twisty were my "go to" rubber lures when fishing for Walleye & all species of Bass when I was in Canada. Chartruese was my favorite colour!!! Along with the Mr Twisty, the perennial Blue Fox Vibrotail is another favorite of mine. :wink: The shads in Canada love them too.
    Best regards,
    Hi Makaira,
    I was pleasantly surprised by how effective these soft mini-grub jigs with he curly tails were in the river. Blue Fox
    manufactures some great lures too with the newer ones made in China instead of Finland.
    I fished both yesterday and this morning for shad in the American River with these deadly mini-grub jigs. I was
    hooking shad repeatly especially between 7AM to 9:30AM and this period seemed to be when the shad is the most
    active and aggressive. Using a light trout rod and line, the score so far is that for every shad I landed, two others
    mangaged to shake and dislodge the small hook from its lip. The rest of the photos were taken yesterday and this morning.

  • Chinook
    There were 3 fishermen in 3 kayaks fishing for shad too yesterday. Their kayaks were anchored and it was hilarious
    to watch a big fiesty shad turn the kayak in another direction as it sped away after being hooked. There were quite
    a number of guided river dory drift boats with both fly and spin fishermen in them. The fishermen would stand up and
    drift for shad while the fishing guide used the oars to manuver the dory to drift over the most like spots in the fast
    current of the river where the shad were schooled up in a holding pattern.

  • Chinook
    Battling a big fiesty shad in th fast current of a river while utilizing a light trout rod and line calls for special
    attention and handling. After a few times when I almost slipped in the river while simultaneously trying to
    snap a photo of the incensed fish and holding the rod in my other hand - I decided to forgo further one-handed
    fishing and photography until I had landed the fish.

  • Chinook
    The majority of the shad lost in the course of the battle were the larger fish which, of course, fought and
    leapt out of the water a fish possessed. It took between 5 to 10-minutes to subdue a big shad (those that
    did not manage to throw off the hook) but it accounted for the most exciting moment of the shad fishing
    trip. At times, I could see a bunch of shad swimming upriver about 5-feet from where I was standing.

  • Chinook
    This is how you fish using those deadly curly-tail mini-jigs. A 2-foot long 6-lb test leader line with a size-7 BB's
    (split-hot) just above the swivel. Facing the river, I cast my jig at a 45-degree angle upriver as far as I can.
    Then I close the bail-arm of the reel when the jig splashes into the river and reel up most of the slack line.
    Then I would point and move my rod in the direction of the drift while slowly reeling up any slack line. At
    every 10-feet the drift, I would give my rod a slight twitch upwards to add a little swimming movement to the
    jig and also to keep the jig OFF the river bottom. When a fish hits the jig, you will feel a strong tug coupled with
    the feel of a heavy weight at the end of your fishing line. I then set the hook and the fun really begins now.

  • Chinook
    By 9AM this morning, I had counted 8 guided drift boats that drifted past us with both fly and spin fishermen
    but only saw 6 fish caught by the boat fishermen on their way downriver. Due to the large numbers of lost fish
    while using a light 4-lb. test line over the past 2 days, I've decided to switch to a heavier 6 or 8-lb test line
    next weekend instead.

  • Chinook
    Both mornings turned out to be very successful forays for shad. The fishing news reports were correct
    about the deadly effect of the curlytail mini-grub on Hickory Shad. I think I will go stock up on more of it later
    next week before the weekend rolls around again.

    Since it's Father's Day in Singapore today, I take this opportunity to wish all the FishingKaki's who are fathers
    a "Very Happy Father's Day!" and should any of you FishingKaki Daddy-O's happen to be fishing today, - a
    "Very Productive Father's Fishing Day!"

  • Chinook
    Professional fishing guides offer year-round guide service, dependent on the time of year, on the American River
    for salmon, steelhead (sea-going rainbow trout), striped bass, and hickory Shad. It's a great way to experience
    fishing for a species of fish that you have not fished for and it's also a very day pleasant trip on one of the
    most beautiful rivers of California

  • Chinook
    Here's a short 15-second MPEG video I took with my Sony Mavica camera of my friend Jacob
    bringing his big shad in last week.
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