There are plenty of signs that Im getting older , my beard is grey , my eyesight is diminishing , a couple of rouge hairs have even sprouted in my ears . Perhaps more worrying is the fact that I am becoming somewhat set in my ways . The crazy eel might be another example of this. Its been around for a couple of years now ,my ever kind sponsors Fiiish UK sent me a batch to play around with and if I am honest I didn’t really take to the lure which did leave me feeling slightly awkward .
Everything I read or saw on the internet suggested that I needed impart massive movements into the rod and fish the lure way faster than my normal super slow approach . The result being that when I did use the lure I only ever landed small Bass . I don’t think this big ones like to burn more fuel than is absolutely necessary .Well this year after a chance encounter on the water I have finally got to grips with the crazy eel and actually I think that it is now sitting level with Fiiish Minnows when it comes to my catches .
So whats changed ?
We have some really cool new colours out there .I personally love the gold bodies , it just looks like the real thing . I am also becoming increasingly confident with the pure white bodies . Bass love white lures and wrasse don’t , I love a big wrasse but they do chew through so many of my soft lures over the course of a fishing season . If people want to catch them thats fine with me but personally I would not set my alarm for 3 am to pursue them . I want Bass and big ones preferably ! At this stage I have been almost exclusively fishing the 150 mm version . Thats big enough to tempt momma but small enough to entertain and 2 lb bass .
Its the way I fish the eel that I think has made all the difference , rather than sweep the rod or impatiently crank the lure I have taken to slow Fiiish minnow style retrieves with the occasional mellow sweep , or at times even dead sticking the lure and letting it flutter about on the tide , a light wind against tide is perfect for this as it allows you to fish the lure downstream of the boat” on the hang ” .You can retrieve the lure 50 feet then open the bail arm and let it drift away from the boat on the tide . One cast per drift suits me fine . I would rather ”hold ”my lure ( or Fly ) in the zone than crank it through the zone then go back through the process of casting and trying to find the spot again . I will fish a 20 – 30 g jig head in as much as 60 foot of water . Im not losing many eels on the bottom either .
Pollock devour the crazy eel and these days if I see good sized Pollock on the screen I switch straight over to the eel , they definitely prefer it to the herring shaped lures , Likewise Cod do seem to love an eel too. Pollock love to follow a lure upwards so I either fish them vertical or make a shorter cast and wind the lure up then open the bail arm and keep repeating the process until the lure is next to the boat .
Its rare that I fish vertical for Bass . The longer the cast the longer the bass ‘in my opinion’. I cant really emphasis that point enough and its something I drill into my clients most days .I have regulars like Mac who can now fish these weighted lures with almost the same skill as me !! I have done so much fishing in my life and I really feel that long line fishing weighted lures requires more finesse than just about every other discipline . The only approach I have that is more technical is deep dredging with flies . Thats a minefield ! Surface lures are easy , fly fishing for trout is way easier provided you can cast a fly obviously .
One sticking point
The eel will slide down the hook shank after a few fish so I strongly reccomend you superglue the jig head to the body . They repair well with med it glue . The Fiish Glue is excellent stuff and dries super fast so I don’t lose fishing time .
Also I have no quarms with turning the body upside down and re hooking it after it becomes loose or ripped . I dont think fish notice that its rigged wrongly , Perhaps they even prefer it as the darker back has a stronger profile when fished upside down . Come to think of it an all black version of the eel would be awseome.
So there it thats my crazy eel blog !