Some thoughts on flies and soft lures in bass fishing.
XLAYER is hand poured jerk bait with reverse rib design, which makes XLAYER’s stop & go action more precise and deadly. With an offset hook set in a certain way XLAYER will dog-walk under water, and set it in a normal way it instantly becomes a falling bait for dead-sticking. You can also shake XLAYER with a 1/32 or 1/16 oz jig head for sight fishing. In another words, XLAYER is the all round soft jerk bait you have been waiting for.
The original Clouser Minnow, developed by Bob Clouser for smallmouth bass in the Susquehanna River AROUND 1984, was designed to keep moving through the water no matter what the angler was doing. Clouser’s rationale was that baitfish, when pursued by bigger fish, don’t stop to look at the scenery.
The Clouser Minnow sinks quickly when it hits the water. When you start a retrieve, the fly swims through the water. But if you stop moving the fly, it keeps moving as it sinks deeper (falling). The only time it stops is when it’s lying on the bottom (sticking) or being grabbed by a fish. Building an offset head can create an interesting walking motion!
This is not a post where one method is elevated in superiority above an other. I would like to demonstrate the similarity that exists between two different approaches to a particular aspect of bass fishing. Lefty Kreh has caught over 86 different species of fish on clouser minnows of many different types. Im sure if you were to take all the anglers in the world currently fishing soft baits you would probably find that that there have been as many species taken on plastics. This simply demonstrates that both presentations are extremely effective and are essentially very similar - they both imitate 'prey' fish darting around foraging or indeed escaping a predator - there may also be other circumstances exhibited like prey 'behaviour' that predators find attractive. Both clouser minnows and soft baits exhibit these characteristics very effectively.
The essential difference between the two techniques (apart from material) is of course delivery - one method of delivery is by a lure fishing rod and fixed spool reel, the other with a fly rod and fly line. I have put heavier clouser minnows on my lure fishing gear, cast, and caught bass and I have also 'fly-rodded' with soft baits to much success.