I've heard every story you can imagine in the tackle shop, from the bass someone caught on Oscar Myer hot dogs to the tuna that bit a cigarette butt. We love hearing peoples stories because most of them are true at their core, even if embellished a little.
The stories that stick with us are the ones that don't make sense or seem crazy. Sometimes crazy get's bit, and even more often it get's bit better than well, not crazy.
The other day, a local, well known, long time, experienced fisherman came in the shop with a dirty cardboard box that smelled like old gun oil and had illegible smudged writing all over it.
In the box was hundreds, if not thousands, of little 3 to 4 inch curly tail worms piled high. As he hands the box over to Brandon, he says "Here, this is what I've won a lot of money on. I don't care if people know my secret anymore." Just like that, he blew our minds with not only his candor at giving away his secret, but how simple a worm it was.
We always think the guy catching all the fish is using some super secret, limited supply, hand made in the basement by an old Japanese guy, kind of lure. But no, that's not the case. The bald guy with grey hair and a goatee from Castaic had it made specifically for him by Mojo, right here in the good 'ole USA.
What was crazy was the worms inside the box. It was just a plain 'ole curly tail worm that he had been pouring with a buddy. It didn't look special, just a color that nobody locally had poured or fished before. It was a plum colored worm with extra blue flake and it was something that our fish had never seen before.
They affectionally named the worm "The Little Red Dude." I promise you that the worm or the color aren't the only reason he caught fish on it; location, line size, technique, etc. all play a huge part as well. That said, the worm is the thing on the end of your line and it's arguably the most important part of the equation.
Tie on those crazy colored worms that you thought would never catch fish. Rig it differently than you normally would. Drop shot a Yamamoto Ika or Neko Rig a 9" worm, there is no wrong way to fish.
Experiment with different depths and spots you think won't produce, and you might find new techniques or locations that make the difference between catching fish and a boat ride. "Fish outside the box" is the old saying, but in our case, it's "fish inside the box", a dirty old box of secrets sitting in the back room of the shop.
Some corrections have been made to the original story. As a fishermen, I guess I couldn't help but embellish a little.
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