History is known to repeat itself. So, when angling legend Al Lindner plays historian, pay attention and you’ll repeat his success. Today’s lesson: walleyes have and always will aggressively attack hair baits like the new VMC® Bucktail Jig.
“The history of anglers catching walleyes on bucktail jigs goes way, way back and there were rows of them in every bait shop” says Lindner, co-founder of In-Fisherman and host of the influential “Angling Edge” and “Fishing Edge” TV shows. “But when soft plastics came on the scene, people got away from bucktail jigs. I did too. But I started fishing them again and I was astounded. In all kinds of conditions and on different kinds of waters, the reaction bite we are getting is amazing.”
VMC’s new Bucktail Jig is the bait with which Lindner’s been loading his boat with aggressive walleyes. He collaborated on its design with VMC, a Respected Rapala® Brand, after inspiration hit while fishing a classic Rapala bait with great success.
“What lit my fire on this thing was the reaction bite that we were seeing with the Jigging Rap®,” Linder says. “Something erratic that jumps and crashes and falls fast really triggers that reaction bite.”
With Lindner’s input, VMC engineered the new Bucktail Jig accordingly. “The head on it is shaped like a pear, so it’s heavily weight-forward” Lindner says. “So, when you jump it off the bottom and then slack-line it on the fall, it crashes straight down, really fast. It doesn’t jump and glide forward like you see with some other jigs. You snap it, you drop it and it crashes. And that’s what’s triggering the fish to strike.”
The Bucktail Jig’s head design provides added control and balance for a variety of jigging techniques. Highly versatile, it can be fished alone or dressed with a soft-plastic trailer or live bait. It’s armed with a premium high-carbon steel, chemically sharpened needlepoint VMC hook.
Bucktail hair maintains its shape in water, presenting gamefish a larger target to attack. Tinsel fibers complement Bucktail Jigs’ skirts to enhance visual appeal. They are available in eight color patterns: Black, Chartreuse White, Fathead, Green Fire UV, Orange Fire UV, Firetiger, Pink Fire UV and White.
“The color mix for walleyes is perfect,” Lindner says. The VMC Bucktail Jig comes two per pack in three sizes: 1/8 ounce (1/0 hook), 1/4 ounce (2/0 hook) and 3/8 ounce (2/0 hook).
While many walleye anglers may have forgotten the appeal of bucktail jigs, walleyes did not.
“We just filmed a show fishing VMC Bucktails and really smoked ‘em,” Lindner says.
Learning successful tactics from the past, enhanced by VMC’s modern engineering, will help generations of future anglers repeat Lindner’s success.
“A big part of the future of walleye fishing in the coming years is going to revolve around bucktail jigs and hair jigs with different types of heads that do different things,” Lindner says. “The first big move in this area is the VMC Bucktail Jig. I believe we are really going to see a resurgence with this for walleyes.”