All Crankbaits Are Not the Samee
If you haven't gotten
any Lucky Craft crankbaits yet, you may have missed the boat, (literally!). This
is the hottest bait on the market besides the Sweet Beaver which will be in the
Delaware Tackle store soon, (I just spoke to Andre Moore), and they are moving
and backorders are down to 3-4 weeks now, and will soon be up to date. Anyway,
back to the Lucky Craft crankbaits. Are they expensive? Yes!! Are they worth
it?? YES!!! I climbed a tree to get one when it was the last one left in a
particular color. One of our Pro Staff threw himself into the water from his
boat to get one back, it is that good!
You can go right in
behind any number of anglers competing at any level and catch bass right behind
them on these baits. You don't have to listen to me though, listen to Rick Clunn
and a thousand others who know how effective this bait is!
Clunn's Fishing Dreams
In 2001, Rick Clunn
completed his quest for the BASS "Triple Crown" by winning Megabucks. Though he
had won four Bassmasters Classics and an Angler of the Year title earlier in his
career, it was the Megabucks title that eluded him the longest. "I had been so
close to winning Megabucks on two other occasions," Clunn recalls. "So when I
won Megabucks at Douglas Lake in 2001, it was certainly a satisfying win."
Now that Clunn has won
nearly every major title in competitive bass fishing, what's left for him to
For Clunn, the eternal
dream of bass fishing is not about filling his shelves with trophies; his bass
fishing dream is fueled by the quest to, "touch perfection."
"Certainly winning is a
part of the fishing dream," Clunn says. "But it's not the whole dream. Winning
and touching perfection are two different things." Clunn defines touching
perfection as a period during the fishing day when the universe becomes timeless
and he is fishing every moment with such absolute perfection that doubt,
judgment and expectation no longer exist.
effortless because all negativity ceases to exists," he explains. "All negative
things are purged and transformed into positive things. The wind becomes a
positive because it pushes you to the next fish. Getting hung up becomes a
positive because it leads you to a different casting angle that produces a fish.
Your mind, body and soul become one and everything works in harmony - it's truly
a special place."
perfection is rare, even for Clunn.
"Sometimes it lasts for
15 minutes; sometimes it lasts for an hour," he reveals. "Only once have I
touched perfection for a full day, and it was amazing."
The desire to touch
perfection more frequently and for longer periods of time is what keeps Clunn
casting. "As humans we want to touch perfection in something - mine just happens
to be in fishing," he says. "To touch perfection on the water for any length of
time is my eternal fishing dream; to touch perfection for an entire tournament
and win is my ultimate fishing dream."
Seasonal Patterns for the Lucky Craft Crankbait
Classic Champion Rick Clunn designed Lucky Craft's crankbaits to be fished any
time bass are shallow.
applications of the crankbait vary depending on the kind of fishery you are
dealing with," Clunn says. "For instance, you can use the RC almost anytime of
the year on water bodies like river systems where fish live shallow most of the
time. However, on deep clear impoundments, where fish go deep during the winters
and summers, the bait has less of a seasonal range."
No matter what kind of
fishery he is on, Clunn has found these plugs to be most effective during two
periods: late spring and fall. Also, he lets the season have some bearing on the
size he will throw. "The 2.5 and 3.5 are good for imitating pesky bream," Clunn
explains. "My favorite time to fish these bigger lures is the late spring, from
the post-spawn through early summer. That's when the bigger female bass have
spawned out, but they're still up shallow eating bream that are picking eggs off
Clunn's second favorite
time of year to fish these baits is in the late summer to fall time when bass
are following shad into the backs of creeks. "During the late spring and early
summer the 2.5 and 3.5 are my preferred sizes," Clunn says. "In the fall, when
shad are the main bass forage, I'll start with the 2.5, but if bass want a
smaller profile, I'll drop down to the 1.5."
Clunn's Cranking Credibility
Rick Clunn knows
crankbaits. Whether it was his astounding 1990 Bassmaster Classic win on the
James River with a cedar "coffin-bill" diver, or his 2000 FLW Tour Wal-Mart Open
victory on Beaver Lake with a shallow square-billed wobbler, or his impressive
2001 BASS Megabucks victory on an ultra-deep diving plug - Clunn has fashioned a
legendary bass fishing career out of his knowledge of diving baits. Of course,
he is best known for his four Bassmaster Classic wins, three of which came on
crankbaits. In addition, he has won ten other BASS events and three FLW events.
Of those thirteen victories, eight were achieved with crankbaits.
Essentially, Clunn has
turned crankbaits into a science. He has spent hundreds of hours analyzing
crankbait actions in an effort to identify their strike provoking qualities. He
coined the term "deflection" to describe the way a crankbait should "bounce" off
a piece of cover to trigger a strike.
Lucky Craft Lures tapped
Clunn's rich crankbait knowledge when they set out to design the ultimate
square-billed shallow diver.
"Wood crankbaits have
always been heralded for having the best deflection properties," Clunn says.
"However, wood baits are fragile; they have trouble standing up to the abuse a
tournament angler can dole out during a rigorous day of cranking stumps or rock.
So I helped Lucky Craft design a bait that combines the durability of plastic
with the intense deflection of wood." These buoyant, fat-bodied shallow runners
feature a unique square bill that gives a more radical deflection for plastic
"Many of the bills on
traditional square-lipped baits are thick and it hinders their ability to dive
and reach a critical vibration," Clunn says. "I worked with Lucky Craft in
designing a bill for the Lucky Craft that is much thinner so it cuts the water
better for consistent tracking and enhanced deflection."
How to Fish the Lucky Craft Series
When Rick Clunn fishes
his Lucky Craft Series crankbaits, he does it with attitude. The four-time
Bassmaster Classic Champion designed these fat-bodied, square-billed lures to
boldly crash through cover and provoke strikes - and that's exactly how he
"The crankbait is a
'target' bait," Clunn explains. "By that I mean it's designed to make contact
with specific objects or targets, usually shallow, visible pieces of cover like
stumps, lay downs, pilings or rocks."
They will run to a depth
of 4 feet, but Clunn uses his rod to manipulate the lure's depth as it
approaches a target.
"I use the rod to
control the angle and depth of the bait to make sure I contact the 'sweet spot'
on the target," he reveals.
On one cast, Clunn may
crank the bait with his rod tip down low in order to hit the base of a stump in
4 feet of water. On the next cast he might raise the rod tip up to get the bait
to crawl over top of the stump.
Since he is often
cranking around hard cover, Clunn uses line in the 14- to 20- pound test class.
His rod length
preference is 7 feet, but he warns that rod action is more important than rod
When it comes to hooking
fish, Clunn likens this style of shallow cranking to flipping or pitching where
the rod must have enough power to turn the bait in the fish's mouth so the hooks
"When choosing equipment
to fish the crankbaits, pay the close attention to your rod action," Clunn
advises. "Shallow cranking calls for a very stout rod - a true heavy action rod,
not a medium-heavy. These are big-bodied baits that are attacked by big fish in
thick cover, and a softer rod simply does not provide enough power to hook the
fish and move it out away from the cover."
These baits are
available in the Delaware Tackle store at www.delawaretackle.com
Big Bass World
Champ/De NAFC Hall Of Fame