Gulf Coast Fisherman Magazine Vol. 41, No. 2 - Page 8

by Colby Sorrells

Tackle Time

Photo by author .

5 over 25

Twenty-years is a long time . In the fishing tackle world , most tackle items are not designed to last 25 years . Only a very few fishing products have a marketable life span of 25 years . Here are five time tested tackle items that are still effective 25 years later .

Almost every tackle company making hard body lures includes a walkthe-dog type lure in their lineup . Heddon ’ s Super Spook is the right lure for consistent saltwater catches , whether you ’ re going after speckled trout or redfish . Both species hit the lure with gusto .
The Super Spook is the great grandson of the Heddon Saragossa minnow which was originally made out of wood back in the 1920s . It was a Florida lure made for Florida fish , but mainly freshwater Florida strain largemouth bass .
Through time , the Saragossa became the Zaragossa . The company changed from making the lure out of wood to making it out of plastic . The Spook name comes from the see-through appearance of some of the lures , comparing it to a ghost or having a spook finish . In the 1980s , coastal anglers wanted a slightly larger version of the classic Heddon lure and the company heard those requests . The Super Spook includes three large treble hooks and presents a bigger target for larger fish . Often referred to today simply as a Spook , without a doubt it is a big fish lure .
The first angler to declare if he had only one lure it would be a spoon deserves a medal . He was right . Two spoons join the list as fish catching lures with lots of longevity , and both of them come from the same company . The Johnson Weedless Silver Minnow and its sibling , the Johnson Sprite , have probably been responsible for more caught fish than any other lures . Bold statement , but the truth is these lures have been successfully catching fish for close to 100 years .
They are simple to operate , cast a long distance , and hold up to wear and tear , making them great fish catching
products . It doesn ’ t matter if you bought your Johnson Spoon yesterday or found a relic from a 70 year old tackle box , they still catch lots of fish . For coastal saltwater fish , they are truly go-to lures in every sense .
Redfish find it difficult to resist a gold or copper Johnson ’ s Weedless spoon . For the rare occasion when they seem to be disinterested , simply reduce the size of spoon to the lightweight 1 / 8 ounce version instead of the heavier 1 / 4 or 1 / 2 ounce example .
Be sure to check the little weedless
arm on the Johnson ’ s Silver Minnow from time to time , especially after catching a few redfish . The arm will occasionally get bent but it is easily bent back in the correct position keeping the lure weedless and running properly . And always check the hook point for sharpness because they often go dull after a fish or two .
Although using a lead jighead with a soft plastic body is nothing new to today ’ s anglers , it was once part of a revolution . Nick Crème made some of the first rubber or soft plastic lures and his Crème Worms were soon in every tackle store . When a bass angler figured out the weedless Texas rig , millions of bass decided they were too good to pass up .
Some crafty old bass fishermen decided to try them in saltwater and coastal fishing changed forever . Numerous different shapes and colors have provided coastal anglers with untold fish over many decades .
Shapes change and new designs are offered every year . The composition of the plastic may have had a scent or something added for smell , and they are made a little tougher when compared to the originals , but soft plastics whether paddle tail , rat tail or whatever design , catch fish .
Which color soft plastic ? Only the fish know , but a small selection of light , dark , red and white goes a long way . Just remember , if it ain ’ t got no chartreuse , it ain ’ t got no use ! Recently , a trend towards very light weighted jigheads has again changed the combination and produced good results .
When numerous fishermen you trust are asked what their favorite old lure is , and they all give the same answer , it ’ s time to pay attention . The next stop was old tackle swap meets , garage sales and on-line , looking for the Hump M5 .
The Hump M5 is like a lot of lures . It didn ’ t stop catching fish , anglers simply stopped using them in favor of something new and different . The M5 is easy to fish and the results speak for themselves . Luckily for all of us , Mr . Humphreys made a lot of these lures and they are still relatively easy to find .
Plastic is a relatively cheap material to make lures out of , and plenty have been produced in plastic . Sharpen or change the hooks if they need it and put that Hump M5 back in the water . They are especially effective in slightly deeper water like creeks , cuts or steep drop-offs , or under a popping float .
These five lures have withstood the test of time . They catch fish now and probably will as long as we have saltwater fish to catch . They may not be the brightest , flashiest , newest thing on the market , and they may not be in the currently favored color , but they catch fish .
In another 25 years , the update to this article will be 5 over 50 . Time will have changed , but the list will still include the same five lures . In a few years if some bright young outdoor writer asks for my all time favorite lures , the list is already prepared . I ’ ll give him my 5 over 25 .
8 G U L F C O A S T F I S H E R M A N W W W . G U L F F I S H I N G . C O M