Bass fishing trends change as fast as the weather - it seems like yesterday all you heard people talking about was the A-Rig.
With the web people's attention span seems to be a lot less than before, and there is always some new shiny thing a google or YouTube search away. This may not be blowing up as big as some trends but recently a lot of people have been talking about gliders. These baits are not new by any stretch of the imagination: muskie guys have been using them for years, their grandads were using them.
Though a lot of these lures are one piece the focus recently has been on the single joint gliders.
Years ago River2Sea released the S-Waver. This bait did not exactly create much of a roar among the bass fishing world. Most guys did not or still do not understand the lure or how to fish it. However, this bait has contributed to countless tourney wins and big fish catches over the years. To people more in the know the Gann Craft Claw has been a secret weapon for a long time as well. Recently Butch Brown has brought much attention to the swimbait word with the Depps Slide Swimmer. This bait started its life as the Silent Killer and people modified them into lipless gliders.
At first cast these baits do not appear to do much they just kind of lumber slowly back and forth. Some whip back and forth quickly. More often than one would want in a lure their are a lot of duds straight out of the package. Not all gliders are created equal. You could have two of the same brand straight out of the package and chances are they will swim differently side by side. This is just the nature of these baits because of their simplicity.
Fishing the Gliders
Like a lot of swimbaits, these baits require a bit of attention to be paid during fishing. Retrieves can vary from a mind numbingly slow crank and pause to more of of an erratic jerk and crank style. Like most baits you have to see what the fish are responding to. These baits will pull a lot of fish to the boat before and even after you find the cadence the bass want on that particular day or time period. I prefer to impart most of my action into my gliders with just my reel handle for slow sinkers. I use the faster sinking baits to fish faster if the fish are unresponsive to the slow retrieve.
Like most treble hook baits you want fish these baits with a moderate rod. Some of these baits are quite big and your first thought would be to fish it on a heavy set up. A lot of the bites on these baits are very subtle and are reminiscent of crank bait bites. Some are gonna rip the rod away from you, it's just going to vary most of the time. You're going to want the forgiveness of that flexible rod.
Choosing the right glider
The glider market is a relatively small one in the bass fishing world, and some of my favorites are not even available. The River2Sea is the obvious answer to introducing yourself to them. This bait can be fished on a heavier crankbait or topwater rod. A step up from there are baits like the Rago Glidiator the Smith X Hitch or the Roman Made Negotiator.
Its hard to say whether or not these baits will stay mildly quiet or will become mainstream. My guess and hopes are that they don't catch on too big. Either way, I'll be catching big bass on these baits for years to come.