Fish Allure News
Tips, tricks, and news
Today we have a great article written by one of our pros, Jason Kincy. Read below to find out how Jason uses Fish Allure in his topwater strike technique!
Fish Allure for Topwater Strikes
By: Jason Kincy
Fishing with an artificial lure for bass is really about trying get them to eat something that looks tasty, make them react instinctively, or simply irritate them into attacking. Topwater fishing is my favorite technique because it can do all three to bass and is loads of fun.
There are three key types of topwater baits where I really want to take advantage of the scent distributed through a Fish Allure tab: walking baits, poppers and buzzbaits. I lean on Fish Allure on these types of baits in particular to really contribute to the reaction you are trying to get from the fish.
For a walking style topwater bait I prefer to use a Heddon Zara Spook, Super Spook Jr. or One-Knocker Spook, depending on the conditions. In my opinion this is the perfect hard bait for using a scented tab due to the fact it thrashes about in the water but does not travel distances quickly allowing for the scent to really entice a strike from the bass. Because these lures generally have a top, bottom and float, I like to position the Fish Allure tab on the bottom, right in front of the first hook on a two-treble spook and right between hook one and two on a three treble spook. This keeps the tab in contact with the water at the point of movement. On old school style Zara Spooks, remember to add an extra split ring between the treble and the lure to keep more fish hooked.
A popper is another perfect choice for a scent tab. A popper style lure such as a Booyah Boss Pop also spends a lot of time in the strike zone when being fished, allowing that Fish Allure scent to really reach that curious bass just underneath. If the popper is big enough I’ll put the tab on the belly, just between the concave mouth and the first treble. If a very small popper, it will go between the two hooks. For a lure that is designed to really tantalize a bass into biting, it’s the perfect situation for a scented tab. Buzzbaits are some of the most exciting and best big bass hookups you can get, and I love to throw them, especially in spring and fall months. In my experience, Fish Allure scented tabs tend to stick better to painted blades, such as those on a Booyah Buzz, than they do on unpainted, but generally will work in most situations.
I try to determine the direction of the blade spin and will put a scented tab on one side of the blade that gets pushed downward into the water when it rotates. This really puts that tab into contact with the water, leaving some scent in that signature little bubble trail left behind a buzzbait. The uses for Fish Allure tabs are almost endless, but these are some of my favorite situations – pairing scent with a lure designed to provoke bass is an explosive combination.
“What the heck is that?” “Who are you and what do you do?” “What are you doing in these parts?” These are actual statements I heard from the general public while on my most recent trip through Pennsylvania and the northern parts of Virginia and Maryland, while driving to the Potomac River for the last stop of the year for the FLW Tour.
I have never in my life had more people do a double take, ask for an autograph or a photo op than I did while on this trip. It seemed as if I was the circus rolling through town on my way to the next stop. Maybe it was because I am famous (not) or maybe it was because my truck and boat looked supersized on the tiny back roads leading into old school downtown settings. When I say tiny roads, I am not kidding… The roads in those parts are two thirds the size of normal roads. When it came time to visit a store, I had to get creative when it came to parking or turning around because of a missed turn. There were definitely some stressful situations because of the size of my rig. In one instance, if it wasn’t for an accidental encounter with one of the nicest guys in the world (Stewart, or Stu as he told me to call him) opening a gate for me, I would have had to drive nearly a half mile in reverse to get to a place I could turn around. Thank you Stu! I hope you enjoy the sample pack of Fish Allure you earned for helping me out.
The good points of the trip were shop owners who would spend the time to talk to you for what seemed hours on end. These people were friendly! The bad points were seeing all the Mom and Pop shops that had recently closed in these areas. Building and sign were still there, but nothing inside. One store had a sign displayed in the window, stating “many thanks to all of our loyal customers over the last 25 years. It is with a sad heart we are closing our doors, thanks for the memories.” It is hard to believe there were 10 to 15 shops on this trip who were no longer in the business of selling bait and tackle.
Now on to fishing – the Potomac River is one of the coolest places in the country to fish. However, because of the tidal influence, it can also be tough to pinpoint the fish. Here today and gone tomorrow is the common theme of fishing on the Potomac. During practice I struggled the first day, figured it out on the second day and then struggled again the third day. A couple baits of choice for the river were top water frog (both slow and fast moving), a crankbait and a small soft plastic flipping bait with a light tungsten weight.
I found several patterns that worked. 2 primary and 2 secondary patterns. Although tides would put a damper on all of it as I could never seem to get in the right place at the right time. Primary pattern number 1 was a Chartreuse ima shaker crankbait with shad Fish Allure tabs on each side. While most of the field fished mainly clear water, I chose to fish way up Aquia Creek, where the water was extremely muddy. Fish were positioned on wood cover and would ambush the crankbait as it went by in the current. I believe the Fish Allure tabs helped because the fish were swallowing the crankbait deep in their gullet. I definitely appealed to all the fish’s senses (we call it completing the triangle – sight/sound/scent). Tournament day, because of the draw number I had, the tide was out of whack with where the fish needed to be positioned. In essence, I had too much water on the wood cover to make this presentation successful. I tried it anyway on day 1 and failed miserably. Primary pattern number 2 was to fish a frog – frog of choice was the Optimum Ferbit in black with a Frog Magic Fish Allure tab on the underside lead weight and Zman Hard Leg Frogz in Watermelon Red. The one two punch was to get the fish to react with the fast moving Zman Frog and if the fish missed the bait after showing itself, throw back on it with the slower moving Ferbit. Once again, this did not work well as conditions for these presentations were off just a little. Overall both days I struggled, but put a few fish in the boat, one on the ima shaker crankbait (with Fish Allure tabs) and the rest with the Zman Hard Leg Frogz. A neat little deal was uncovered both in practice and panned out in the tournament. If you found a standalone duck blind with deeper water (16 inches or more), a decent fish could be caught. I caught a few solid fish in the event off of these duck blinds.
Bottom line, was it was fun but tournament success was not to be had by me at this event. This was also my last FLW Tour event of the year – I can’t believe the year is already over. Now that the season is over I can reflect on how the journey went. It was a ride filled with ups and downs. I learned a ton and hope to be able to be back in the front of the boat in 2018 for my sophomore season. Lastly, many thanks to all who supported me during the 2017 campaign. Big thanks goes out to my family – Thank you for your understanding and support this year, it was tough being away from home for longer periods of time, but your support made it easier. Last but not least, a HUGE thank you to the Muny family, owners of Fish Allure. THANK YOU for your gracious support, which without it, I would not have been able to follow my dream and make it a reality.
Do you work in a field you love? Do you have your dream job? Well in this blog post you can see that as the Vice President of Sales for Fish Allure, I sure do. My job affords me with the opportunity to travel the country and meet folks from all walks of life, as I sell product for Fish Allure and Fish high level tournaments like the FLW Tour. Sometimes though, the best stuff happens close to home! I recently fished a local charity tournament and had the opportunity to be paired with former Major League umpire John Hirschbeck and famed outdoor writer D’Arcy Egan for the Cleveland Plain dealer. We had a great time on the water, but more importantly made some new friends for life. Enjoy the read – tight lines and good fishing!
The trip was scheduled, planned out and executed! Things were oh so close to being perfect, but yet again, I fell just short of the prize. This trip was going to be different. I have never been to Wisconsin, or that far Northwest. I figured it would a great place to get Fish Allure Scented Bait Tabs stocked into a bunch of independent dealers so the list included a ton of local Mom and Pop shops and an appointment with a new dealer, who was set up about a month ago.
The independent shops I visited were a great bunch of shops with interested owners. However, like all good owners, they wanted to research and field test the product first to ensure it was something that worked and would sell. After all was said and done I have a bunch of great follow ups to do. One shop, Fish Tech of Morton Grove, IL, bought on the spot. The owner knew about the product and was impressed with the technology. For me, as guy interacting with these shops, it is so cool when an owner understands and gets the technology. It makes all the hard work seem worthwhile.
I visited Fish Allure dealer Chicago Bait and Tackle, in Romeoville, IL. Doyle and Betty are a great pair! Their shop is a unique one, catering to the hard core bass and Walleye fisherman. Their niche in the market is to carry items not readily available in Wal-Mart or Bass Pro Shops. They have a great selection of unique hard-to-find and high-end tackle items. They have done well for themselves, so well they are in the process of expanding. Great to finally meet you guys in person! If you are in the Romeoville, IL area, swing in and patron this shop – you will be glad you did.
Ok, can we talk about the Chicago traffic? In a nutshell, one word sums this up – HORRIBLE! It took so long to make it through the shop list in this area that I had to deal with the nightmare for parts of two days. I just so happened to be moving through the area during mid-day. So I made a mental note to drive through the area as late as possible on the way home. Yeah… What was I thinking? Even at 11:00pm it was still bumper to bumper. Note to self. Self, if at all possible, avoid this area forever please!
What about the fishing you ask? Again, one word from the opposite end of the spectrum can sum this up. AWESOME!!!! The fishing on the Mississippi River was exceptional for practice and the event. FLW got this one right! Even with a ton of rain and a cold front that took me from wearing flip flops and shorts one day to long sleeves and long johns the next. The fish did not mind – they must have been hungry, or maybe it was the Fish Allure Scented Bait Tab I was using on my sinker that made the difference???
Practice was good! I figured out where both large and small mouth bass were spawning. As a matter of fact I caught the biggest bass this year, a 6 pound 8 ounce giant! They were in the bushes and although I was shaking most of the fish off (during practice), this one held on all the way to the boat. The bait of choice was a ZMan Black/Blue Palmetto Bugz, a Reins Tungsten 3/8oz black sinker on 50 pound Sunline Braid. I believe the subtle modification of adding a Fish Allure tab in Crawfish scent to the sinker tipped the scales in my favor. Not only in practice, but in the tournament as well. When you pitched the bait into the bush they would sometimes be on it quickly, but as practice and the event progressed and the fishing pressure and weather started to take its toll, the longer you would have to let the bait sit. I believe the Fish Allure tab, releasing the scent continuously while it sat in the same area turned those fish on to biting the bait.
For the FLW Tour event, it seems a 71st place finish was not good. The weights were so close, I missed the money by only one pound and three ounces. Heck, I missed the cut for the top 20 by a little more than three pounds. One more upgrade and I might have been fishing longer into the event. Even though I fell short this was a fantastic experience! The Mississippi river can be daunting, but for this event she provided some thrills! Until next time tight lines and good fishing!
Good afternoon anglers! Today we have a guest post from our very own Pro, Alex Burton. Thank you Alex for writing up this great educational piece!
Does Putting Scents on Lures Really Matter?
By: Alex Burton
When it comes to using scents on lures fisherman are split down the middle. Some will not throw a lure without it, while others think it is just a gimmick. So do scents really help you put more fish in the boat?
Let’s start with how a fish “smells”. Fish have nostrils on each side of their snouts. Unlike us they don’t start sniffing around when they detect something in the water. As they move water flows into one nostril and out the other. Special nerves between the nostrils then pick up on various molecules in the water that the fish’s brain then interpret as scent.A fish’s sense of smell is roughly 1000 times greater than a dog. They use this incredible ability to associate certain smells to things in their environment. Be it specific plant life, other fish in their school, or food. They can also learn to associate certain smells to a positive or negative depending on how their experience with that particular scent was.
Obviously some fish rely more upon their sense of smell to catch prey, like catfish for instance. So what about more predatory fish like bass who rely more on sight and sound to find their food? The answer is yes, scent is essentially the icing on the cake for them.
When a bass is on the hunt they slowly patrol their territory. They watch for flashes in the water, feeling for vibrations of struggling or unsuspecting prey near them. After locking in on the location of potential prey they start circling in to check it out. As they move closer scent fills their nostrils signaling that this is indeed their next meal as they go in for the strike.
Based on what we know from above adding scent to your lures gives them that realism, bigger bass especially, need to commit to the strike. How often have you watched a bass follow closely behind your lure, but never actually touch it? That is why, they never got that final assurance they needed to go for it.
As I said earlier fish can also begin to associate some scents negatively, causing them to turn away from that particular source. This is especially true on higher pressured bodies of water where bass are already weary from constant pursuit. Subtle scents like nicotine from smoking or even sunblock will cause fish to shut down in an area.
This is why some of the biggest lure manufactures in the world started scenting their soft plastics. Yum, Berkley, and others all have their own secret blend designed to help bass truly commit or at least hide any negative scents we accidentally put on our lures.
Unfortunately when it comes to hard plastics like crankbaits we have to add our own scents. While oil based gels, sprays, and sticks work, they are quickly washed off after a few casts. Constantly applying them is not only frustrating, but can get costly as well. Thankfully advancements are being made like the Fish Allure scented decals that don’t wash off, and last for an hour of continuous use.
To answer our original question, scents do make a difference. They aren’t a magic multiplier, but they will help you add more realism to your presentations. They have also been proven to make fish hit lures harder and hold on that little extra for a better hook set.
If you still question it pick up some Fish Allure tabs or other scent product to test it for yourself. I promise just the confidence boost alone they give you is worth it, whether you’re a weekend warrior or veteran tournament angler.
During my recent trip to the FLW Tour event on Beaver Lake in Arkansas I experienced weather like no other weather I have experienced in the past. All four seasons in a nine day trip. Winter cold 30’s, spring time rain, and mild temperatures. Followed by one or two days of summer with 80 plus degrees and down pours. Oh yeah… Let’s not forget the fall like winds, bringing down trees and dropping thousands of leaves in the lake seemingly overnight. Yes, we had it all. These ever changing conditions did not help when it came to me finding fish. Where I practiced was flooded and underwater come game day. Oh, I failed to mention the lake level rose over 15 feet in 6 days from practice to Friday’s cut day of the tournament. Fishing for me was painfully slow – hence the 145th place finish in the event.
The sales portion of the trip was also weird. I added a couple new dealers to the network but had to hopscotch around to make appointment times with current Fish Allure Dealers. I also met up with a few of the Fish Allure Pro-Staff guys along the way. Visiting with them made the trip a huge success for me.
Wow… Also forgot to mention, I was getting over the flu from several days prior. During the trip I lost a total of 17 pounds. Having no appetite for days on end will do that to you. I lost so much weight I had to put a new hole in my belt to keep my pants from falling down. Still not 100% yet as the remnants of the nasty bug is still haunting me. However, I feel a million times better than I did just two weeks ago.
So the take away from this trip is mixed for me, but I am going to paint it all in a positive light. I met some great tackle store owners and people this time around. Although the lake treated me with tough love, it was still an awesome experience. Arkansas is a wild weather place and you never know what you are in for while visiting this state. This time I got the bad and the ugly. Next time, maybe I will get the good. As for me, it is on to La Crosse, Wisconsin and the next FLW Tour event just a few short weeks away. Until next time – tight lines and good fishing.