Good things come in “big” packages. A slight variation on the old adage but it has a totally different meaning to bass anglers. I’m not talking about the pretty packaging that lures come in nowadays that we have to remove with a scalpel and surgical trocar. I mean literally the size of the package of a hot bait, especially if said bait is a soft plastic shape.
You hop in the boat with a buddy who has been catching them. You ask him if he’s got any of the hot baits that you could throw.
“Sure, just grab it out of the big bag in the back,” he says. You open up the back compartment and find the jumbo, hand-stuffed, 500-count bag of said plastic in his favorite color. That’s when you know you’ve found that angler’s bait of choice.
We got that way recently with a certain bait out of Texas called The Hag’s Tornado. Jim Tutt turned us on to the bait. He had been using the bait with great success all over the country but especially on Kentucky Lake, where at the time he’d been practicing for an FLW Tour event.
“Please don’t tell anyone about it right now,” Tutt said. “Let me enjoy a little more fruit from the tree before everyone else gets a hold of it.”
Happy to maybe have an ace in the hole, the secret was safe for a while. Tommy Hagler, maker of the bait talked to us about the bait and sent us a few packs to test and review for an article. The first time fishing, a 5-pounder fell for an F5 on a Carolina-rig. The rest as they say is history.
Now more than a year later and the Hag’s Tornado is always in the boat. It works on Carolina rigs, Texas rigs and even on shaky heads. It’s a great flipping bait and an even better bed-fishing bait. It will catch fish on a wacky rig as well as dead-sticked on weightless hook.
The bait has a natural tendency to stand up head first on the bottom regardless of how you rig it. And if you can pull it up next to a piece of cover and shake it, the results are impressive. We spent a lot of time watching bass react to the bait this spring sight fishing. They definitely react to the nose down posture of the bait, and it gives an angler the ability to impart a lot of action without having to move the bait much.
The other nice feature is a carved-out pocket near the tail to insert a rattle. The rattle chamber gives the bait an added element of sound, and the angler doesn’t have to tear the bait up trying to jam a rattle evenly into the plastic.
The baits are pretty durable but will tear up after a few fish. We’ve rigged them backwards, wacky and other ways to make them last, but the best bet is to find your lake’s hot color and stock up.