Thursday, March 20, 2014

Walk This Way - 3 Walking Baits that are all the talk around the dock in 2014

I don't know about you, but I can't ever get my hands on enough top-water baits.. between frogs, poppers and walking baits I could easily easily break the bank.. and if you ask my wife I may have already, but with that said I spent this past off-season freezing my ass off up here in Canada while still  paying close attention to a new group of walking baits that seem to be the talk of the town... and I have gone out of my way to add all 3 to my personal arsenal. 

One, the Triton Mike Balsa Bull is a re-engineered version of a true classic (Ichiban Minnow), the second bait is the previously discontinued Reaction Innovation Vixen that just recently became available to the masses, and the third is a newish bait from Jackall that not only brings some size to the table but it also includes a cavity behind the head designed to add bubbles and disturbance.. 

So, lets see what all the hypes about…

the BALSA BULL is created

For those of you old enough to remember the legendary Ichiban Minnow aka the Balsa Pro you already know that it was touted as one of if not thee best top water bait ever created, (even more so in clear water situations).. But then in the late 90's like an episode of the X-Files it mysteriously vanished from the shelves, never to be seen or heard from again.. until now.

Triton Mike of the Bull Shad swim bait fame put in the time and effort to have the Balsa Pro reverse engineer thus creating the Balsa Bull  a nearly 100% identical replica of this now extinct bait.  Once available for sale the Balsa Bull immediately  garnered a flurry of interest, and has blown up on forums and review sites all across the word wide web. It's not often that you see this much love is put into a bait, but then again thats what Triton Mike is know for. 

The Balsa Bull is officially the bait I'm most excited to throw in 2014, I snapped up a pair of them (one in each colour) and I can't wait to give them a test drive (come ice out). Do yourself a favour and check our the Balsa Bull, yes it retails for a steep $29.99, but just remember the original when found retails at prices close to or above a car payment

The VIXEN returns

If you frequent  fishing forums or fishing related websites there is a good chance you have seen the rumour mill working overtime when it comes to the re-introduction of  Reaction Innovations Vixen line of top water baits.. well it's a rumours no more  because as of March 14th Reaction Innovations announced that they were officially shipping Vixens to your favourite dealers, and I jumped all over one. This announcement comes on the heels of a very long pre-sale period that sparked some complaints from anglers who have been waiting as much as 10 months for this product to finally arrive. Recation Innovation themselves expected this bait to be available back in 2010, so yeah it has been a long hard road

Why the Hype? well there is a mix of hype around the Vixen some of it is being created by Reaction Innovations themselves who are constantly reminding us that this product will only be available  for a limited time, thus driving up demand. But the rest of the Hype is from the group of anglers who have been awaiting the Vixens return since it's discontinuation pre-2006. Why it ever went away, we may never know, but what i do know os that the demand for this product never went which makes me very excited to tie one on.

Will the Vixen worth the wait? only time will tell, I placed my order two short days ago from American Legacy (one of the few companies that still had stock) and now I'm eagerly awaiting its arrival. From everything I read by simply tying this bait on I should almost instantly turn into Kevin VanDam, if that's the case, Ill see you at the Bass Master Classic next year

Something new - the Jackall Bowstick 130

while standing in the top water section of the Bass Pro Shop it's easy to go cross eyed while attempting to sort out which walking bait to buy. Bait companies are painfully aware of this and thus they do their best to make their baits stand out, some times this means pimping out their baits with crazy new colours and other times they actually have to up the anti and offer the angler something brand new.. enter the Jackall Bowstick 130

There are a few things about the BowStick that will catch your eye, first and foremost is it's size, other then the IMA BigStick this bait is the largest topwater bait in my arsenal (currently) and in a time where giant swim baits are king it's nice to see the top water world catching up. The second and more obvious change is the triangular shaped hole just behind the baits head. Jackall believes that this hole will create more disturbance in the water and leave a larger more pronounced bubble trail.. both of these are a good thing.

Yes, I know, I know the Bowstick has been around for a few seasons now, but its still being talked about on the dock and that is  probably because Jackall is rapidly expanding in popularity in both Canada and the US, where as when this bait was launched Jackall was still relatively unknown to the weekend angler and a much harder to find commodity.  Although talked about I personally don't think it has received the same hype as the above baits and even if your not a believer in the hole/cavity system you can't deny that the Bowstick brings with it both Jackall high quality and some serious size (5.2 inches long and 1oz)

Thanks my thoughts, what about yours?.. discuss

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