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SurfGuy85

Bucktailing . . . . . a plug caster's sacrilege?

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I'll be the first to exclaim a plug can do anything a metal lip or any other manipulated wood concoction will. For years I loved, lived an died by this mantra and in-spite of many an outing's skunking; the nich filled by wood plugs still can't be ignored. Aside from delving into another wood obsessed rant i'll get right to the point; fishing boils down to little more than casting and retrieving, lord knows a plug fisher's ritual well and often to their dismay; sore shoulders are no measure of success in today's thinned out striper population. This all said, I'v found Bucktails to be vastly Il-used, yet overused in the same breath. My random, publicly unsubstantiated opinion means little to those who are reading but with winter on the horizon I couldn't care less. Casting and retrieving, sort-of an injustice to bucktailing in my opinion...I tried something different this year which saved me on a few trips. In no small part to the average amount of fly fishing i'v done throughout life, I tried fishing a bucktail in much the same fashion I would a nymph in a fast stream. Paying close attention to it's overall weight and buoyancy in relation to the current being fished, I cast far up tide and drifted various weight and tied Bucktails as I would a sinking nymph in a stream and maintained contact throughout the drift until my line came taught down tide. At no time did I retrieve the bucktail across current, the only requirement was eliminating slack line until the bucktail drifted out at wich time i promptly pulled in the bucktail. After choosing a slice of cross current or lateral moving inlet water, I drifted an appropriate hair density and weight bucktail to hit that water at what ever deapth was apropriate. This means in a sense, fishing the lightest Bucktails conditions will alow, so for the sake of conversation; what are some abstract ways you employ this over fished and under-explored lure option?

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SurfGuy85

 

What you described is nothing new to a good Buck Tailer. It is not abstract in the slightest. So called dead drift/ controlled drift can and does work but just like your nymph fishing but you can need what in fly fishing was called the "Risling lift " or you end up with wonderful drifts and no fish. But you do not see too many do it. Like wise you see tons of mindless working of plugs. :D

Bucktails over used? Where? In a busy surf in a stiff head wind day or night they can be a very effective lure. Do potentially less damage to a Bass over the multiple points of hooks mostly used on Plugs.

BT's Plugs metals they all have their spot in the bag. I fish only and regretfully Cape Cod and Montauk. BT's are of less use to me in Cape Cod compared to plugs and flies but in Montauk if pushed to have one type of lure it would be a BT. You learn to fish them in many ways. There have been books written on the subject.

 

Mike

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Thanks for sharing your thoughts and techniques on bucktailing SurfGuy.

 

Your strategy is one many of us use successfully, along with our own unique touches to get a strike under various conditions...like trailers/no trailers, bottom bumping, particular retreive action applied or not applied, etc.

 

Always interesting to hear what others might be doing, whether it's the same or different.

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There isn't. One way. To fish a bucktail. What ever the fish want. Is what works. Ive seen guys. Not catch. Because. They refused to adapt. Then. I can recall. A spot. Where. We were all. Using 4 ounces. But. This one guy was using. A. 2 once. And he was smoking the fish. On top. Thats why I love bucktail s. Its. The. True idiots lure. Dont take much skill the hard part. Is. Letting go. Of. Rules. And. Finding what the fish want. A good friend of mine. Caught his personal best this year on a bucktail. He did nothing right lol. No trailer no hair left. Hook was probably dull lol ...landed. the fish. In a impossible. Scenario ...he told me the story. And I walked back in the house shaking my head lol why do I bother. Making the perfect bucktail

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I'll be the first to exclaim a plug can do anything a metal lip or any other manipulated wood concoction will. For years I loved, lived an died by this mantra and in-spite of many an outing's skunking; the nich filled by wood plugs still can't be ignored. Aside from delving into another wood obsessed rant i'll get right to the point; fishing boils down to little more than casting and retrieving, lord knows a plug fisher's ritual well and often to their dismay; sore shoulders are no measure of success in today's thinned out striper population. This all said, I'v found Bucktails to be vastly Il-used, yet overused in the same breath. My random, publicly unsubstantiated opinion means little to those who are reading but with winter on the horizon I couldn't care less. Casting and retrieving, sort-of an injustice to bucktailing in my opinion...I tried something different this year which saved me on a few trips. In no small part to the average amount of fly fishing i'v done throughout life, I tried fishing a bucktail in much the same fashion I would a nymph in a fast stream. Paying close attention to it's overall weight and buoyancy in relation to the current being fished, I cast far up tide and drifted various weight and tied Bucktails as I would a sinking nymph in a stream and maintained contact throughout the drift until my line came taught down tide. At no time did I retrieve the bucktail across current, the only requirement was eliminating slack line until the bucktail drifted out at wich time i promptly pulled in the bucktail. After choosing a slice of cross current or lateral moving inlet water, I drifted an appropriate hair density and weight bucktail to hit that water at what ever deapth was apropriate. This means in a sense, fishing the lightest Bucktails conditions will alow, so for the sake of conversation; what are some abstract ways you employ this over fished and under-explored lure option?

 

Bucktailing is somewhat more than just casting and retrieving. Just like playing pool requires putting ENGLISH on the cue ball,casting a buck tail effectively requires acquiring a feel for the way the bucktail moves. The best bucktailers--if you study their technique do work the lure. Why? Because they want the buck tail to take on the characteristics of a LIVE creature. In some instances the undulating of the attractant is either too little or too much motion to imitate whatever the fisher is trying to mimic. I know this based on making a few thousand casts over the last three years with buck tails.

 

Add these ideas to your buck tail strategy: Pause the buck tail and then startup. Let the buck stop and sink in deep water.

SNAP THE BUCKTAIL---make it jump! Sometimes rhythmically whip the bucktail into a whirling dervish type of motion---this standouts and makes the lure create all kinds of noise and splash---almost like you were using a miniature pencil popper. Use different types of trailers--some sink --some paddle---

some remain buoyant . From what I have seen most good bucktailers have a certain rhythm and a way different strategy for buck tail usage depending on where they fish and conditions.

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1000and this is the buctail j44 spoke so eloquently about..only thing he got wrong was it was new out of the package that session..had about 6 blues on it that tore it up..was using curly tails and got tired of sacrificing them..so i threw it just as you see it...then BAM....my first 40...

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Fishing is little more than casting and retrieving? I like to simply things but I think you've taken that a bit too far. There's much more to it than simply casting and retrieving. Picking and getting to know a spot, how the wind and tide affect that spot, and on and on.

 

Regarding you're bucktailing technique, it's been done many times before as others have said. The key to being successful is trying to figure out what the fish want on a particular time, tide and for the conditions present. Yes, sometimes it is as simple as cast and retrieve but more often than not there's something else that's needed.

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I made the commitment to BT's late in 2013 and have done OK with them while trying all sorts of techniques. The dead drift described earlier is exactly the same as casting up in the sweep behind a wave and letting the sweep pull the BT along the wave line with little or no retrieve. I have been messing with this all year long with BT's and Shads on jig heads. Lot's of fun because it reall makes you focus on every little bump and you normally don't have to throw your shoulder out trying to get someting beyond the second or third wave.



The BT's themselves, trailers, colors, amount of hair, types etc are limitless.


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I rarely see anyone use bucktails at the areas I fish. The standard is SP minnows or avas with teasers. There are many ways of fishing a bucktail which is what makes it such a interesting lure for me. I had a tough time starting out with bucktails and didn't catch much the first 2 seasons I used them. Once you gain some confidence in them, you can fish them in any surf condition and do well.

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1000and this is the buctail j44 spoke so eloquently about..only thing he got wrong was it was new out of the package that session..had about 6 blues on it that tore it up..was using curly tails and got tired of sacrificing them..so i threw it just as you see it...then BAM....my first 40...

 

You forgot to mention that Jay tied that bucktail with feathers from his pet pigeon!!! :D Congrats on that 40lbr. Dan.

 

 

Carlos

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There isn't. One way. To fish a bucktail. What ever the fish want. Is what works. Ive seen guys. Not catch. Because. They refused to adapt. Then. I can recall. A spot. Where. We were all. Using 4 ounces. But. This one guy was using. A. 2 once. And he was smoking the fish. On top. Thats why I love bucktail s. Its. The. True idiots lure. Dont take much skill the hard part. Is. Letting go. Of. Rules. And. Finding what the fish want. A good friend of mine. Caught his personal best this year on a bucktail. He did nothing right lol. No trailer no hair left. Hook was probably dull lol ...landed. the fish. In a impossible. Scenario ...he told me the story. And I walked back in the house shaking my head lol why do I bother. Making the perfect bucktail

 

I've heard of run on sentences but that is the first time i've seen run under sentences. ;)

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