What is the AuthentX Craze? It's a new sensation sweeping fish nation...walleye and sauger love plastic! And B Fish N Tackle AuthentX Moxi's, Pulse-R's, Ribb-Finn's, Ringworms, Paddletails and K-Grubs are what you need to drive them sauger and walleye CRA-ZEE! In our opinion these are the best plastics for walleye. But don’t take our word for it, try our five best tips.
Are you fishing where the walleyes are?
But Walt, I bought a bag of your miracle AuthentX soft plastics and can't catch a fish on them. What am I doing wrong?
First off, you need to go fishing right now on a river with a known population of walleye and sauger. All major rivers of the Great Lakes plus, the Mississippi, Illinois, Missouri, Rock, Fox, St' Croix, Rainy, Flambeau, Cedar, Iowa...you get the idea...look on a map, find a walleye river and go fishing!
If you want to learn how to catch fish...you need to go to where the fish are, in abundance. Right now the best walleye fishing is where there is an abundance of fish. That’s in the rivers.
How do I find the right spot?
Those river fish are going to be in pre-spawn, spawn or post-spawn right now...they are going to travel right up to the dam and are stacked up like cordwood or they are staging downriver to about five miles. If you want to learn how to catch them quickly...hire a guide!
If you want to figure it out yourself, watch other walleye anglers and see at what depths and areas they are fishing without getting on top of them and messing with their spot. Then find another area just like it and give it a try!
Then try my TOP FIVE ways to fish a jig rigged with AuthentX plastic baits, get the net ready!
Here are the Top Five AuthentX Plastic Techniques, in No Particular Order
Some call it Rippin', others it's snap jigging and some even call it getting radical. Whatever you call it...it works. It works on aggressive fish, it works on negative fish, but why? Gettin' radical triggers the walleye's innate response to it's natural phenomenon! Actually, I just made that up to see if you were paying attention, I really don't know why, I am not a scientist.
Gettin' radical calls for a reaction strike on the part of the fish. It sees Ribb-Finn, it eats Ribb-Finn and rod bends. Speaking of rods I prefer a St. Croix 6'8" Eyecon Snap Jig rod for all my jig fishing...especially when I'm getting radical. The extra fast rod tip lets me make a good snapping motion and the sensitivity gets the nod for a quick hook set.
To rip a Ribb-Finn or any jig and plastic for that matter, make a cast, let it hit bottom and give it a quick wrist flick of about 6" to 12," hold your rod until the jig settles back down and then reel in the slack. Repeat a few more casts with this action. Then, if you don't get any takers, make a bigger sweep of the rod up to two feet, reel in slack, big sweep...etc.
The key to rippin Ribb-Finn's is to vary your cadence, try different ripping motions and then repeating what works. This is pretty much how you fish any lure. Once you figure out the action that attracts a fish to snatch your lure, you will have success on the day!
Some call it swingin', some call it working the shift. Call it what you want, you can use this technique from boat or shore.
Cast slightly upstream and let your H20 Jig/Moxi combo slide downstream in a controlled drift ticking bottom once in a while. If you use too heavy of a jig, you will snag up. Too light of a jig moves too fast and is out of the attack zone.
When your jig gets to the back of the boat or end of your cast and starts to swing around is usually when a strike occurs. If you don't get a strike then slowly begin reeling back in. Pause every so often as a fish will often follow it back to the boat or right up to you near shore. I've had fish strike in inches of water from shore in the Spring...so be ready to set the !!broken!!
Having the right "feel" is when you go from a guy fishing to a guy catching. Look around at the other anglers on shore or in boats around you. Catching walleye requires skill.
There is always one guy in a boat that catches most of the fish or in a group of shore fisherman, there is always a guy. The key is to gather enough time on the water catching fish to be that guy.
Power dragging involves use of the B Fish N Draggin' Jig. James Holst and Dave Coons of In- Depth Outdoors TV perfected this technique on the Mississippi River, but it works everywhere. You can pick up a Draggin' Jig kit with a FREE DVD on how to do it right here.
And here is a quick clip from In-Depth Outdoors to check out on Mississippi River Draggin'
Dubuque Rigging Ringworms
Dubuque rigging rules! Dubuque rigging offers endless possibilities. You can double rig ringworms, use different styles of AuthentX plastic, use plastic on one jig and live bait on the other, you get the idea!
Running your main line to rod to a three-way swivel to a short line to your jig gets to bottom. Then by running a longer line off the 3rd end or the three-way to a lighter jig or a plain hook allows you to run a different type of bait of plastic so you can determine what the hot color and bait is for the day. It's a great way to figure out an area quickly.
Getting Vertical with AuthentX
Vertical jigging is by far one of the best ways devised by man to catch a walleye or sauger. The late great walleye pros Gary Gray and Tommy Skarlis were two of the best vertical jiggers I've personally ever fished next to.
A great vertical jig fisherman can use the absolute lightest jig imaginable that will still remain in contact with the bottom. I'd be jigging with a 1/4 ounce jig in the Illinois River barely feeling bottom and Tommy would be in the boat next to me catching fish with a 1/16th ounce jig, Tommy was a jigging machine!
The key to vertical jigging is matching boat speed to jig speed to current speed. The river speed changes constantly, your jig speed needs to match the current speed and you then adjust your boat speed to match your jig speed.
This is easier with a heavy jig. You can use a 1 to 2 ounce jig and pull upstream or if the current is really fast, over 3 mph you may need to jig slowly downstream. But a larger jig might be too heavy for light biters. In this case you lighten your jig and slide faster downstream while trying to keep you jig vertical and in pace with the current.
AuthentX plastic is great for getting vertical. Moxi's, Pulse-R's, Ribb-Finn's Ringworms and Paddletails all produce! Each has its own unique action. Sometimes a walleye will want it a little slower, sometimes a little quicker, sometimes big and bulky attraction is best, other times sleek and shiny!
You might have a plan in your head on what to do as you are driving to your spot, but be prepared to switch it up and figure what the fish want on a given day.
Word from the Captain
Finally, Here is veteran Rainy River Guide, Captain Chris Granrud of Chris Granrud Fishing with a quick tip for anglers seeking to catch more fish on plastics:
"Our favorite B fish N tackle plastics vary from the Pulse-R, Moxi and Ringworm. All have specific applications we rely upon. A wide variety of shapes and colors serve the angler well.
A quick guide tip involves nipping down the overall size of the plastic by simply cutting away a small portion of the lead edge of the plastic when encountering either a finicky bite or short strikes.”
How to select the right jig
A common question we receive is what weight jig and/or jig weight should anglers plan on bringing up with them. We prefer to utilize the H20 Precision jigs from B fish N Tackle as it offers an important plastic keeper in the form of a wire that sticks through the plastic and holds the plastic in proper position. This jig also is void of a molded collar that can cause damage to the plastic when lacing it up.
Matching jig head colors with color schematics of the plastic can offer those big walleyes a very nice finished offering. As per proper jig weight this is dependent on the flow of the river, technique being employed and the areas of the river anglers are targeting.
As a rule of thumb an angler wants to have a slight contact with the bottom when working a jig back against the current upon a slight drop of the tip."
(As a special note this same H20 Precision jig head doubles as a fantastic crawler jig with that same wire keeper holding a piece of crawler in perfect position.)