TRR photos by Amanda Reed

Unassembled swimbait or minnow rig above, and assembled rig bleow. Note the paddle tail that catches water and wiggles as it is reeled in.

Keitech Minnow Rig 8/3/18

In lieu of last weeks’ blog, I thought I’d review another lure in the synthetic polymer world, the Keitech minnow rig. There are a number of brands and varying shapes, but my review applies to the average beige plastic minnow, approximately four inches long with a flat circular tail designed to catch water and wiggle left and right like a wriggling baitfish. You may also know this lure as a swimbait. They come in many colors which comes in handy dependant on the weather and other environmental conditions. The way they are used is by inserting a jig head through the nose, straight through the body before curving out through the belly. The jig head then appears to be the head of the swimbait and the hook protrudes from the belly arching back towards the front. The Jig head adds weight to the lure and gives the angler not only casting distance, but also sinking speed. Different sized swimbaits require different weighted jig heads. For that three to four inch swimbait I like to use a 3/4 ounce jig head. These provide a balanced amount of weight so that the lure doesn’t sink too quickly but still has enough heft.

Once tied onto your line, you can heave it out there and let it sink almost all the way to the bottom before reeling it in. The jig head acts like a bumper of sorts and skips over most surfaces. The hook, however, does protrude and will occasionally snag on the bottom if you don’t keep it moving. Since it is a single hook though, I have found that it will most often turn across surfaces and not snag since there are not other barbs to rotate into whatever structure you are skidding across. The best option though is to keep the lure moving at least a foot or so above structure if you know what is down there. I’ve had success with this lure in deep and shallow water though, so you shouldn't limit yourself to trying to play keep away with the logs and rocks.

I like this lure for deeper water fishing, mostly because it really sinks and you can fish for larger deeper predators. I was out with my wife recently and each of us were casting in about ten to 15 feet of water with a boulder-like bottom to the lake. We pulled out several small mouths that were very aggressive on the take. With those large jig hooks it wasn’t too hard to set the hook as long as we kept them moving. Overall it made for some pretty fast and fun fishing once we got into the right spot. The keitech is the brand we used on that particular outing so I would put my money there if you’re going to get some new swimbait, but feel free to experiment. Try some darker and lighter plastics, try the ones with ribs, and try the ones with varying tail design. Sometimes the bass in an area go for one little variation over another, don’t be afraid to spend some time honing in on the design that works where you fish. This is primarily a bass lure but I know some folks that have caught shad and even crappie on it. Sometimes you honestly don’t know what’s going to bite till it happens. This lure is really an entire category of lures, so I’ll be back to touch on it again in the future, but in the meantime try it out and send in your pictures of your success.

*If you have any luck with the lure of the week, feel free to email your pictures to events@riverreporter.com for an opportunity to share them on our website. If you have a favorite kind of lure we haven’t reviewed yet, feel free to send that lure to our office at PO box 150 Narrowsburg, NY 12764. We will add it to our weekly reviews and share the results. Check back each week on Mondays to see the new lure of the week!

 

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