Musky 360 Podcast Episode 231: Muskie Odyssey and User Q&A

Musky 360 Podcast Episode 231: Muskie Odyssey and User Q&A

Steven Paul April 16, 2024


Podcast Transcript

Alright folks, welcome to the Musky 360 podcast, Jaybird!

Steve, what's happening?

I'm back in black!

Finally, sorry

On the road again, traveling, traveling. It's been non-stop this whole spring. I bet my wife's happy I haven't been home, but I would like to change clothes. I've been wearing freaking cowboy boots for weeks on the end.

I'll tell you what, that can't be comfortable.

No, Jay, just a cacophony. So, just got back from freaking muskies Canada, it was a blast. Jay, had a blast, had a great time. Plenty of fun, we'll get into that, but of course, airline travel, we're like oil and water, right? Okay, so my laptop goes missing, which is part of my seminar and also in that bag, guess what's in there? shoes that aren’t cowboy boots. So, for freaking 48 hours and running through Ohare airport, I'm wearing cowboy. Oh, anyway, sorry.

You lost your laptop, I mean, it's gone?

No, no, it's-

Oh, you got it back?

It's found, but it's delivered. You know what I'm saying?

So, they'll send you back to you.

It was a mess and anyway.


And then freaking, just… we're not naming him, I'm not naming my buddy, but I'm standing there, here it is, landing in Toronto, you know, I'm just kind of tired. What was sucky is the way they moved my flight. I had to be at the airport at 3am, but I had the guide trip the day before, right? So, I come home and pack and I’m like trying to lay down. I'm just kind of lying there wide-eyed like, rrrrrrrrrrrrr. Because you know you have to get up that early. And I was like, I didn't even sleep. I get on the plane. I think it was the adoption flight, Jay. Like, I think they were just shipping babies to Canada

Right, probably not

But it was just screaming children the entire time. So, you can't fly, right? Like, one would scream and guess what would happen, Jay? The other children would scream and as someone who doesn't have children, it was hell.

So, let me guess, you're in the airport for nine hours. And then the flight's like 45 minutes, probably

Yeah, well, you know, well, I can't miss. I'll tell you. It's never the flying, it's the frickin' airport in the crap. So, I won't name names. We're not naming him his name, Jay, because he's a frickin'….


Yeah, yeah. My co-conspirator all weekend. We bleeped him in the other thing, so I'm standing there, walk outside, trying to get an Uber and I hear, “Hey, nice shit-kickers, idiot!”

Right, you did it. Who could that be?

Well, who could that be? My co-conspirator that I didn't know was coming and then there's a blurry selfie after that and just the wheels come off the wagon, Jay. Just non-stop funsies. We had a blast, Frickin' Frack. Got there, got the setup. The venue on that place is phenomenal

Right, Muskie's Canada, they just absolutely top notch.

I believe by volume, it's the biggest show there is.

Right, it's very cool.

Very cool. And everything was top notch. Every single thing was top notch. From the setup to all this. Because we get there. I'm with, we'll just call him thing number two.

Right, or who knows.

What are my co-conspirator, if you will



We get there. I'm just exhausted. Then I find out our rooms aren’t ready. You know, you shut down you can sleep anywhere. I can sleep anywhere, Jay. They're taking creep shots, Jay. Man tries to take a nap, creep shots. Trying to take a nap, guess what, creep shots.

Oh, okay. That's a little out of line.

It's just creepy. Just a guy, that is creepy. Just a guy, he might be dead. He's just trying to take a nap

Anyway, from that way. Oh, I'm being silly. We had a blast. But oh, goodness. No, we were both of us. My co-conspirator, if you will, wacky tired, but got there the next morning. Seven, thirty in the morning. Bright, bushy, tailored at the show and that thing did not rap, I think I was, I was not last man standing. There was like 60, 70 people at the after party at like 12:30. I was like, I'm done. I'm out of here, but that's a long day. It was a long day. Skipping a lot in between. Had a lot of fun. That got to play guitar with a guy named Rory up there. He's one of the guys from that he actually brought a PA in a couple of guitars and we butchered a song or two. After being up that long and plenty of Pepsi. Only one or two, Jay. That's a big day for me. One or two

So, sounds like fun. You've been around

No, we had a blast. It was cool. I met a couple people. I gave away some books, I made some phone calls to a couple guys that were at the show. We'll get there but had a really fun time doing the seminar. Always do something different. I just kind of slubbed in a chair and talked. It was, I told people it was as close as you get to the podcast. Where I'm just staring off into space and speaking, Jay. That's kind of the thing. But so many people are asking where are you? We're is Jay? Where were you this weekend?

Not just, uh, yeah. Well, getting things done. And I know. Vilas County. I should have been there

You'll lot of your buddies. Maybe next time

But it was cool. I was super stoked. Super impressed and just absolutely honored from the amount of podcasters that came out. I couldn't believe it. The guys that were there. Thank you. Freakin' awesome. That was so cool. But I did get to see a bunch of oddball Canadian stuff, Jay.

I bet. I saw the vendor list

Yeah, it was. Tell me about it. It was nice

So, you had, Um. I think there were two American brands there, right? And then we went outside that was all native Canadian stuff. What I'll tell you about that show, Jay. Imagine, imagine. You weren't there but you want to hear it in podcast format of what was there. A ton of big trolling baits. My like knee jerk thing, walkin' that show. The vast majority of what was going on were big Lexan lip custom trolling baits. There's Hose Baits there, which he's kind of a legend up there, I guess. And that was like the that bait everybody's lined up for. You can only buy so many baits. You can buy two and it was kind of crazy. What I noticed of most of the baits at that show were super low production. I'm seeing that which is like an interesting deal. Where even the US shows a bunch of super low production stuff, which is cool. But that tends to be the game at those shows. Which is back to the show colors stuff and of course I'm doing my seminar and we talked show colors a little bit, Jay. Can you believe that?

In person, add a show? Talkin' show colors? Are you crazy?

But I did it. I make no apologies. And uh, You know, it is what it is, colors. We'll go there later, but some beautiful artwork and one of the guys we're gonna have on here in a minute. Basically, he flat out says this is like an art piece. Which is this stuff, Jay. You'll hear him here in a second, hand carved literal like functional wood carvings, but it was interesting. Like I said, from just an outward perspective, walking the show what really, really drew my attention or caught my eye was the amount of large trollers and the amount of baits that tended to be in that 12-inch range, in that 14-inch range.

Wow. Okay. Lot a big baits, right?

Just a lot of big baits. There's a couple swim baits there. Got to see Mike from Waterwolf. He had a big setup. You know, obviously that's a perennial Canadian favorite And not as many what like for me where I would go…what am I expecting to see at this show? I would expect more of that tinge towards maybe the custom bucktails. I know Dadson had a setup there, but it was big trollers

That was that. Less bucktails would be your takeaway

By from the US, you know our version, Not US. It was the big trollin bait show. That was genuinely kind of the vibe there. It was like big trollin baits

Big trollin baits. Maybe a downsize to an eight- or nine-inch trollin bait. And trollin bait trollin bait trollin bait trollin baits Just big honkin trollin baits. I saw a couple that were I want to say in the 24-inch range


These, giganto…You ever see a Wishmaker?

I was just gonna say Wishmaster, wasn't it?

Was that Maker?

I had some Wishmaker I believe

Wasn't it? I haven't slept in days again.

I never did.  But yeah, I know what you're talking about. I think he passed away several years ago. But yeah, he used to make some giant really cool baits.

And they were emulations of his baits, but they were in that, we're talking in that vein. Yeah, here's the biggest honkin bait you've ever seen. Where is that a display bait from Rapala? As a comedy gag or as a functional and a lot of art pieces. Just a lot of art pieces. A lot of stuff that you go. And that was it. If you're wondering what was happening in that show. That was kind of the crux or the core of the baits you were seeing there, but a lot of innovation. You know, that's not a bad thing that's just that's the trend right now. A lot of people innovating in their lip-angle. Or how they're, you know, configuring their hooking or whatever it might be. But that was cool. Got the opportunity, like I said, to speak. Did basically two hours of podcast live, where I set their stare off in a corner and kind of run my mouth about structure fishing, right? So, if you've listened to the podcast, you didn't miss much. You know, if we had a video, Jay, we would be like the worst, I swear to you. This would be the worst. Like, you know how Rogan has like video podcasts, right?

Sure, yeah

Unwatchable. That's what ours would be. Unwatchable, right?


Weird socially awkward guy stares into space in his garage, while weird socially awkward guy stares into space in his living room Guess who's who?


Holy freak, anyway. I almost had a panic attack, that was cool. I don't like people, Jay. Too many people. Did a lot of walking. A lot of walking, a lot of sweating. You know, it's these things. People go, why don't you go to shows. I like, you know, crowds. Crowds scare me. So, I don't go to the mall, you know. That's why I'm a fishing guide. One or two people a day, I can handle. I like people. Well, put.. But man, holy and then on top of it, the show is great, the attendance was through the roof. But on top of it, there's like a high school hockey thing going on and there's just crawling with people and then you ever watch like the shining, right? And how the hallways seem never ending. And yet, I've lost my freaking vans. I don't have my freaking comfort cush vans. To where, now I'm stuck in cowboy boots like an a-hole. And I'm walking down these hallways that are never ending. And it's just people, Jay. You don't become outdoorsmen for people. I don't know, you know. Maybe I'd run a party boat for Tommy Codd. But nonetheless, we're not here to talk about my problems, but it was pretty kind of amazing. But obviously the Canadians are super nice people.

You can't go wrong there.

I will say this and just my sardonic take of things I'm mortified by the price points I'm saying, Jay. In some capacity. That's the one thing that got me.

Right. Getting expensive.

We've talked about that before and it's a different game and I don't know what that is and it's in my opinion and so be it, but you know..

Well of course, you said that show. You know, the predominant basis of that show was high-end, one-off stuff.

Well, that shows, I mean you look at the show. Low production.


Shows, but that is what it is. It is what it is. I mean. I saw money moving and I saw people buying. And like Mike Spratt, we're gonna have him on. I already did the interview. He's doing functional art and says it. You know what I mean? It's a spoiler alert. But as far as like baits that are supposed to get wet and things like that going 250, 300. You know, 190. There was a lot of stuff and that was again. I'm just giving you my take. It's not good. It's not bad. And I didn't come home with a bunch of stuff. There's one kid and we'll talk about his stuff next week. I've got his card and his shirt and his bait. He's a big podcaster and he gave me and I never asked for stuff. But he was gracious enough to give me something. You know, and I'm sitting here looking and I get it. You know, 80, 90-dollar baits. Even on people that are starting out, but what was shocking was some of these baits that people just know. They're gonna walk in and spend 300 bucks. You know. That's a bad deal

It's different.

You know, where you look at some of these baits, 100 bucks used to be, Whoa! You know what I'm saying?

That was the

Ooh and I mean, you always seem to talk to social commentary, musky fishing. I'm not saying it's good. I'm not saying it's bad. I'm just bringing it up. And it's been the way of the world of that's where it's headed. You know, and I mean kind of shocking. Just kind of as you get sticker shock. Maybe I'm too poor. Well, maybe I'm too poor, maybe I'm not hearing any stuff. You know, if a guy's got X amount of hours into each bait, You know?

Yeah, that comes. I mean, I understand the process

You know, they have a batch of them. They have a handful or whatever. And they paint them all at the same time. And they do those steps. But it's just like, they count the hours and you know, you're starting to look at like I got probably eight, nine hours into each one. And what's your time? What's your time worth?

I mean, it's..

I mean, how much is a Big Mac cost in a big city now?

I heard it’s. Oh

You know what I mean? Dude, I'll tell you what.. This is just.. Thank God I get help. Between Holland and Toronto. Holy crap, is it expensive?

Hmm. Oh, well, I know. You know, you're getting gouged

Like, and I'm not saying the show. Is gouging like the hotel that puts it on and all that stuff. Or these, like, you know what I'm saying? Like the restaurants and the bars and like in those Hotels. Oh my God, it was expensive. Anyway, that's just life. And maybe I'm just complaining. You know, it ain't my problem. It's just my assessment. You just look at stuff and it's like being in the game. As long as I've been here watching, you know, 50 bucks people would lose your mind. 100 bucks was too much. Like, you know, this guy's crazy to sell, and then you know, not batting an eye…300 bucks. And it's just not me. I'm always been a little pragmatic. I think that shows in the podcast. You know, I did do this. I'm sure I got myself in trouble in innumerable ways. Sort of doing the podcast live, talking about a lot what we did where I said, I don't think the bait matters as much as the running depth. That got some eye rolls, Jay. You know, when you kind of call it out. We've talked about where it's not about the perfect presentation. Is about the perfect depth of presentation and proximity. When you're addicted to 300-dollar baits that kind of makes your head roll around me. You know, sorry. Yeah, that was it. One thing I did want to mention. It was very cool and we're gonna have him on. I want to spoil one of the guys that came to the bash, Jay. Remember the Canadian couple that came down this year, brought some baits. He won he won “Best new bait maker of the year”

No kidding, okay, cool

The awards and he's a big podcast listener, so shout out to him. Shoot me an email. We'll you'll wind you up for next week. And I want to talk about your stuff. But it was cool, like I said. In that organization and I'm not being nag about the prices. It's just that's my take. You know, I'm a musky guy and I'm a frickin' I'm not the monopoly man, Jay. You know? Well, you know, if you think about it. You know, one purpose a show exactly like that serves is that, you know, if a guy living up there doesn't have access to a lot of musky stuff, maybe as much as some people in America, right? You know? And it's like, you know my buddy Bob caught an awesome musky trolling on one of these Jimmy Bob baits. And I know Jimmy Bob's gonna be at that show

Oh yeah, they were.

And I’ll wait winter to go there and I'm gonna get two of them, because that's my only shot at it

Dude, that's cool. That's really cool.

I got to meet Hoser that owns Hosebaits, right?

Hosebaits, yeah, I've heard of them

Okay. Been around forever. Seem like a cool guy. We were we were we had a Pepsi or Seven

And uh. Okay

We're running around that place like rats and he grabs me says, “Follow me,” right?

Uh oh. Uh oh

And I was told, “there's a couple people I talk to you”. It is happening. You know dual purpose. I'm out there to talk. But there's a couple of companies we wanted to say, “Hey could we inquire about your products in the USA.” At the musky shop. We're always trying to expand. What's going on at the store. We always want to bring the best to the best and you talk to the best. Hose I know is going to not be in the game, but you got to talk to the guy. And he directs me outside. And there's the line of people waiting to get in, wearing their winter clothes. And this is like at 11 o'clock at night. They were lined up the night before. That was crazy. Just lit a line of people. And when I got up. So, I got up like seven in the morning. Took a shower ran down there. And they were just letting people in. And the line was phenomenal. And like you said, there were people like. This is my one crack at this. This is what I got to get something I heard a little bit of and I guess this is just this sticky side of that. Not another negative kind of that flipper thing. And I was hearing of people were like concerned with the flipper market. You know what I'm saying. As far as like, for show baits, especially stuff that that limit of guys are making 100 pieces once a year. You know and they're trying to eliminate that, but yeah, if you wanted to get your hands on it's cool. But like I said it was just slightly different take and it's just a different world. That show world, just as a different world off more on the custom and the things. But it was neat it was neat to see a lot of these baits. And that's just my knee jerk. On it where I go, maybe it's my guide brain. Where you go, I you know. Yeah I could buy a $300 baits. But now I need five of them and if I lose one of them. That's what do you. Exactly. I'm trying to need to right and you guide. So yeah, you definitely need to right now I lose one and I'm divorced, you know? I remember the first $100 bait, Jay.

Oh buddy. That's a tough life no. That's a tough one. Don't do it. I'm gonna pull the trigger on a $100 one. I'll tell you


Hey. You can attest to this. It's not been one time. That we've ever asked. Do you guys’ ship in boxes that don't say musky shop on the label?

Yeah. You'll see orders of chemicals. Like please do not put an invoice in the box


You know. It's just like


But anyway. It was cool. Like I said, mesmerized. Probably the top end maybe the most positive aspect of it would be I was mesmerized by the quality and mesmerized by the craftsmanship and I think that's kind of the beauty of the small builder and the beauty of low volume of these guys that are just doing. Impeccable. Art pieces. Impeccable baits. That are just beyond the pale. But I'll tell you blown away by the hospitality blown away by the Muskies Canada Organization. These guys they should be the litmus test for how a show is ran and how an organization runs itself and just blown away. By how cool the Canadian anglers were. So, I will shut up about that. But thanks for having me guys. That was an honor and a privilege and just super enjoyable but Jay. I got to meet some great people. Some people I'm friends with that we don't get to see each other too often and one of them is Jamie Pastelli, Rising Sun Charter. So, I gave him a call really quick here and so he can fill people on his guide service. Kind of off the radar a little bit. You know what I'm saying. It's not that Shield Lake thing. It doesn't get as much love. So, Here's Jamie real quick talking about his guide service.

Guys I got Jamie Pastelli. Jamie how you doing brother?

Hey I'm good man. Just finally got back home there. After gracing me at the Odyssey. It was a crazy.

You know. I literally, I was just taking the bus to work. Anyways, So Yeah. Don't go there. Don't sh- I just told Mike I said. We're not burning my buddy, right my partner in crime right. Because, he's far more dignified than I am but Mike was like of the two people, “I said if any two people in the Musky game you would think would be paired up, like frick and frack right. He's like how are you two guys?” I said well I don't know. It just happens that way. But anyway, Mike killed at the show. Got to hang it with my buddy. Jamie, Jamie's a heck of a fisherman. You're doing the Rising Sun Charters man. Talk about the show. What did you think about the overall vibe of the show and what's going on with your guy business this year?

Oh, it was good man. It's always good to see familiar faces. And you know the honesty up in Canada Is kind of like the last goodbye the last show in the year. And then, the other boat comes out of the stars next week and the way we go

Heck yeah, what do you get on first, before Muskies are up and what's kind of game plan?

Yeah so, my little uh Musky training up here is uh do a lot of long-ago guide trips. Kind of we got Kind of Texas-sized Gar up here on the Ottawa River. I don't know why there's something up here. But you know we got many boats that we had to move. So, it's a little bit of good psych mission before. So, get ready to do some good sets. And we also do a little bit of live mission work too. So however, you like to catch and we can get it done.

Very cool. That's exciting just because you know it's another big fish. I-I-it's why not. You know and me and you were gabbing about Gar on the fly, because I think I conveyed to you like when I first taught myself how to Musky fly fish I was practicing on gar we could sight cast them. You know trying to land my fly. Yeah, who needs to be trying to learn what a real hook set would be with like a you know a willing participant with you guys target me you were explaining to me. You've got a couple tricks. You don't have to give them away. You've got a couple tricks where you're getting hook penetration on these things instead of using rope jigs which is cool.

Yeah yeah I tie my own little metal pattern flies and I make sure my little troubles are raising or raise or raise or sticky sharp right. So, you've a chainsaw pile and I get those like super sharp

And you're yeah it's cool. He's able to get hook penetration on these gar- but went so just like is it just like Ontario. When does your season for Muskies fire up there in the Ottawa area all that fun stuff.

Yeah, so we got three bodies of water here. Um the Rideau and the Matawasco and the Ottawa. So first the ember of June that's when the Rideau and the Madawaska open and then the third Saturday. That's when the big girl opens the mighty Ottawa. So, you know we get a couple of weeks in on the other bodies of water and then it's a full game on here

Oh, heck yeah and that that runs until when

Until we freeze up in the. Hugely December. Just making sure so you got plenty of time on the water there

What would you say you know I know the answer to this. We've gabbed about it. But let's say somebody was interested in fishing with Jamie. And they're you know they've done what a lot of us have done Fished in in in Ontario. You fish the shield lakes. You fish that stuff and you're so familiar with it. Muskies or Muskies, but how is it different where you're at? Like what is it. How would you differentiate the experience from say like the typical Shield Lakes to fish in your neck that what can somebody expect is. How the experience would be you know slightly different is it insanely different? What's the take man?

Yeah, we're pretty blessed up here. We got another body water in and speaking on Hermione's day Lawrence just only an hour from us well right so. Regardless of conditions, you know you can miss super in pure water. You can just see the Ottawa River after you know rainfall looks like double copies of times and then you know we got the tannic water and then you know and then we got the or urban type. Muskies seem like the Rideau River where you got to deal with a little bit of bulk traffic. It's just turning the warm ones so I think you know like I think you said it right to Muskies the Muskies. And then depending on what you know what my guests are looking for. They're looking for a fish lifetime rather than just looking to maybe get grabbed their first fish

You got different options for everybody very cool man. Well, anyway, Jamie the prerequisite the push of pushes how does somebody get a hold of if they want to check out. Rising Sun Charters maybe they want maybe they want to do some preseason gar fishing with you. Maybe they want to do a late fall trip. They just want to see something different. They want to fish that area. How do they get a hold of you? What's the easiest way?

Yeah, that's way to grab a hold of me is either my website rides with the I got all my contact info on there and I'm all going on social. Heavy into that. I'm on twitter under my name at Instagram Rising Sun Fishing and you can find me pretty much everywhere. I love the chat. You got any questions still for the tech. We're calling me at 613. There's no 6.4. 075

And here's my question. Have you seen my adopted dad anywhere?

I'll have to believe it. I can't burn him that we're heathens anyway, Jamie good seeing you man. I'll talk to you soon man. We'll catch up real shortly. Okay

Jay look at us. We're almost like a real podcast where we have guests. We're almost getting there buddy. We're just like we Jay we had a guest. We had a guest on somebody sunk low enough to be on our show. Everyone's well someone wants to talk to us every once in a while somebody wants to go slumming on the musky 360 podcast. You can reach me. Anyway, sorry, we don't have any guests. I like that but now Jamie was super cool, dude. You know most Canadians are it's a good time had by all, you know, so anyway, his buddy actually it's cool because Jamie actually brought Mike who pulled a bunch of awards here. So, I gave Mike a shout. Let's talk about let's hear about his baits real quick. All right. I have Mike Spratt from Spratt crafted. It's unbelievable had the pleasure of meeting you here just the last couple days unreal you're at the show. So, Mike you basically cleaned house didn't you just clean house and

It sounds like it sounds like

The modesty of Canadians never ceases to amaze me. You pull best in show and best new or the best new bay of the year at the Musky Canada show. Mike talk about your baits man. And just a preface. I was in and out of that. Oh, thank you. I hung out with these guys. He's a friend of Jamie Pastilles and You know that both got to see these things up close. It's their works of art. So, what's going on with your baits man? They're freaking amazing.

Um, well, thank you for the kind words. I really appreciate that. It's um, this was my first time showing and selling lures on my own and it's been a two-year process. Um, and so I have uh everything I make is handmade out of cedar. Um, and I really I very much enjoy the creativity of carving them. And so, I just whenever I'm inspired, you know, I you know. Everybody watches stuff on YouTube and you get there's a lot of tricks and tips. Tips and tricks that you can figure out and you get inspired by other people's work you get inspired by fish that you see. Um, and more and more. I just you get excited about a really cool looking animal and you want to reproduce it and so uh, the two the two lures that I brought to the show that that caught the most attention. Um, one was the tarpon which is a great big 14-inch cedar hand carved and um, it's I put a lot of time into the tarpon. And I made three of them. And two of them are gone. I still have one left. Um, and I think it's spoken for. I'm really proud to say. Yeah, and and the tarpon got a lot of attention and I and a lot of people just whipped out their phones. And they were showing photos of tarpon that they caught like it. It really got people excited. Um, and those are lures that I hope will never get actually fished because there's so much work in them. It's really pretty.

You know that bait when I first came to your booth you could not… You just had to put eyes on that thing. I just had a gravity to it. You know I’m saying it's like whoa, what is this?


And it's true. It's funny. You see most bait makers would die to not have their baits fish. But that's truly a work art. How much time would you say in each tarpon from from a cedar blank to it's ready to sell how much time do you put in each one you think

There's about 20 hours of workmanship in each of the books, which is it's heavy, but it's also very enjoyable but it's also spread out over more than a month because you know you treat the wood you stain the wood. You know, I like to leave a little bit of wood grain showing just so that everybody can tell that it's not made a resin. Um, so there's stains and then there's clears and there's ceiling sealants. Um, and so I really like to take the time with the lure and it also lets you think your way through different applications of doing things. Um, so yeah, the tarpon was very successful. The other one was really successful was the catfish. And I suspect that it was catfish that actually uh took the awards. And it was an again that was a cedar bait and had two joints in it. And that one I put rubber whiskers on it. And so, everybody that that was the one where every little kid had to combine.

I didn't know it was gonna be me too. I don't know just I'm like a giant man child. If you didn't notice, you know, but I immediately gravitated to that on that bait where you're like, uh and Is that like do you think the catfish? Is that like an official bait of what you're making or let me ask you this. Do you feel like you're making? Do you feel like you're making functionality or are you making art pieces? What would you think?

Okay, that's a good question. I think that I definitely think that I'm making art when I'm making those my father is an artist and I've always it's been on the artsy side and I and I've done carvings. I've been doing carvings on and off all my life. And so, they're definitely on the art side but Um, I'm building them so that they can fish I say they're musky ready. You know, they're wired and they're sealed and they are as they are as ready to be fished. Um as anyone else's and I test them and if they don't run which often happens when you put in things like fins and tails and everything that are anatomically connect correct it. It means that a lip is often not enough to make it actually swim in the water. So, I test them and tune them and if they don't swim then they're not for sale like I that's what I want. I want it to be a fishable piece of heart and you know that there are people that fish that spend. Thousands of dollars sometimes on a musky lure and they'll fish with it. And so, I need to be ready for both people and both people bought lures. At the show two people said this is never going in the water. Um, you know and so they got a display stand and somebody said else said no this is going right in Georgia Bay

It's gonna get crushed. That's awesome makes me just happy. I guess. It's odd. From a you know from a craftsman standpoint, you're making obviously functional art there and it's cool because you know and for meeting you in person and talking about this, I know that that function is high on your registry because I have seen baits. I think a lot of people have over there's where it might look the part. But it doesn't have the action, but it's awesome that your focus is there. Um, let me ask you this where. Is it if people want to check these things out?

Yes, correct. It's which is and I’m on Facebook and Instagram as well and spread is

At there you go folks you can figure out. The dot ca is for Canada because he's from Canada yeah, but not there

Ottawa Canada very proud

Just absolutely interesting, you know, it's awesome. Like I said just the craftsmanship's there and it's cool. We didn't ever got around when you're talking about your father was an artist and you've been an artist for that long. That makes so much sense where it's you know functional art and from it. If you're a bait collector, you know, if you're if you're into displaying unique baits, these are definitely worth. That now do you just we never covered this when we're short chit chat and have Pepsi’s. Do you do commission work or is it just you make the art and people buy it or can people contact you with an idea or? How does Spratt Crafted work? Is it just your inspiration or do you do commission work? Where's your head out on that?

That's a good question. I'm really I'm really only a you know a new to this. My goal going in I came from I came from another business with my good friend John d'Aniston and we were doing blade baits and at one point we were doing 1500 2000 blade baits a year and it was it was the workload was overwhelming and that was the biggest reason they had to step away from that and so my goal with this business is I need you know; I've got a job in a family and I also love to fish and I don't want to give any of those up for a side hustle. Right. Um, so really the goal is that I can be as creative as I want. I can make as many or as few lures as I want and. And just have them available and take them to show so the goal was not to do commissions and not to take orders at all. I really want to just be creative and love what I do. Um, but at the same time when we all have we all have good friends with awesome ideas and it's also very fun to work with people to bring their ideas to life as well. So, I'm not close to it, but it's not part of my business model

I've only had two functional professions in my life what both of which have been hobbies. I've monetized. You know, and it's just yeah, I'm trying to yeah with the things I do outside of fishing and the podcast that I don't even mention because I don't want people to know that you know, I'm saying so I appreciate that like you have that that separation there. Which is like if you've been making blade baits I think a lot of people don't realize when you're going into bulk production or even what people think are small manufacturers. It is it it's a real job. You know, I'm saying it's full time. So, I like that I respect the hell out of that where you can sit there and create art and it you know. It shows, you know, I'm saying it shows through obviously everybody. Yeah, everyone at the Musky Canada show saw it. Amazing finish work amazing craftsmanship check them out. It's I highly recommend if nothing else. Do you have a picture of the catfish and the in the tarpon on the site?

Yeah, they're both on the site just guys if you like baits just go check them out

You know shooting messings say hey, they look cool bro or whatever just in following on social just so you can sort of see what you. Uh, what this guy turns out. Yeah, I might Mike. I'm super excited to see what's warming around in your brain next man. Thank you so much for being on the show. It's a pleasure meeting you up there too and uh. I apologize for my other friend that was a bait maker that will go unnamed. I'm not gonna burn him on the show You know what I’m talking about. Oh, it's a frickin frack running around it's little now. Isn't that let me ask you this if you're gonna sit down and

You just go through everybody that was there everybody you would think of in the musky game, right?


Is he and I the least likely pairing of full-blown trouble together you could come up with so I was. I talked with Jaime like uh, you know, I was it was the first time I had met both of you right um and he saddled up in the restaurant and um and we were I was absorbing my first impressions and that was the top of our conversation. It was how did these guys find each other they just magnetized to each other

Just and yeah understand you guys were both coming up from the states for the show and everything. But holy geez, it's like these guys are peas in the pod like they just hit it off

We're thicker than thieves and it freaks people out sometimes and it's like walking around with that he's like Voldemort from Harry Potter. I don't I'm not gonna burn him, you know. He's respect he's respected. I'm not nobody cares about me, right? But yeah frickin frack running around that place like two weebles all weekend. But anyway, mike. I hope I get to see again. I definitely am gonna try to sneak up there and fish with you and Jaime or get the opportunity at some point again. Sharing the love two of the best awards at the show the best to show you can't beat that check it out. It's Don't bother him. He doesn't want commission work. Just go window shopping and enjoy mike a pleasure man. I hope to see you again here real quick.

Thank you so much for having me Steve

Absolutely, Jay. What do you think of that Mike Sprat functional art pieces? Are you beautiful?

Absolutely cool. Yeah, chicha check that out. Its dudes check out his site there. I mean I was blown away. I couldn't fish one dude. I mean it's not a price point thing there I was talking about. But that we you would feel bad because here it is you talk about time. He's got 20 hours into one of the tarpon base 20 hours of skilled carving and you're like, what if you just snag that in a tree? So. Hey, you lost your very expensive bait be you know. You could call the fire department. You know, they probably come out for you not sure. Yeah, just you know

It's up there. Believe me. Just help me help me boys get it in that yeah

Uh, anyway, so get the ladder get the get the hose out. Did you boys bring your hose?


Very cool. Well, let's talk about what I need to again. It's just his what let's talk about what's new at the Musky Shop here to recenter myself on baits I can afford folks

Yeah, yeah, yeah, I’m super excited that they're not eight million dollars

You got the Mepps sale on the musky Lures because Mepps is running some specials right now. That's happening still. I think most of these shut up as far as the actual show up with some of the custom Innovation stuff. We got a bunch of Musky Innovations custom stuff Quad Dawgs. Mostly Swimming Dawgs all four models Swimming Dawgs and regular mag size

Bulldogs there you go

Very cool colors. Yeah, we got a whole big display in there. Yep. They're on the top of the list there check them out

More in my budget where we're getting we're getting closer getting same prices same price of stock colors

Oh, there you go boys got your Krakens get your yet

Where Jay, would you say have we sort of hit the for most of the manufacturers or most of stuff shown up? We sort of like there where everybody's got their stuff in for the year or do you expect you know a pop before.

There's a bunch more stuff coming in. Yeah, there's a bunch more stuff coming in so wins that, because it means

We talked about the beavers

Yeah, we got we got beaver baits in a real shipment still have Lake X. We have some Lake X we have some of the beaver stuff Some of the new RJ stuff we've got a lot of the new Savage Gear stuff maybe coming next week. There you go. So, I'm hoping to get on the water tomorrow and wind up here and shoot some of the stuff underwater and get some yeah get some good video footage of you guys’ new products

You gotta shoot top waters with underwater

I shot top waters last week 22. Oh my god done 22

Yeah, they're freaking the stock pond that's got the 50s behind the shop

It's got something in there. We're not sure if it's a mutant fish or what but it works just caught behind this shop just launching two pounders, right?

Jay, you gotta help we did there's a 63 in the pond behind Musky Shop. They've been feeding suckers for 30 years

Maybe in there who knows or it's a mutant catfish

Or all the fish that show up in the sucker deliveries that are not suckers. Yeah, and for the rejects get dumped in there reject lake reject

We make a sign back there Reject Lake

Anyway, I just want to set your own risk. No, don't fish it. It's private property. I was just hoping somebody to show up and you just come to work one day. Jays like a ranger back there. Good luck putting that thing in there

If you if you said there's a 64 back there and we just talk we should see now

I'm giving away we should have talked about it and just like slowly built this plan where we're planting seeds to mess somebody up. But don't say you know and then one day we slip up what lake it is. Anyway, I'm an idiot.

You know how we you know how we always joke every time we want to film something on the water. Some guy fires up a two-stroke leaf blower or there's a truck back. You know, but that it was constant. And I'm like if you ever guys if you ever watched the “The Complete Guide to Musky Fishing” last year or like the “Sucker Master Class” thing we did or like the like the 20-minute Kraken video

I would get the bait my hand now. Here's a problem with filming out. I'm just venting this week. Jay and sorry. My feet hurt like I'm frickin waiting tables. I'm an idiot but uh here's the deal. Every time you get the boat going the right way the wind has stopped right. I know what I'm gonna say and I'd open mouth It's like where's the truck coming from?

Nowhere. Beeps were me

Goes over the one jet that was from uh took off from Eagle River one. Yeah, that's light the one flight ever


Try to film something outdoors and tell me and you literally will be in the most remote place and like where you can go like a week and everybody's got a four-stroke and in the one day, here's Homer Thompson with these, you know 9.9 Johnson just firing that bad fire net up. Anyway, talk to bunch this week about reels to folks and the question because I've always sort of lent uh or leaned towards some of the smaller reels and never said I don't like them but I've never kind of gravitated towards like the big 500 series stuff

Right. Yeah, I've got my hands on Daiwa was kind enough to hook it up through the Musky Shop. We've got one of the Daiwa Lexa 500 right so I got my hands on that. We're talking about like the Tranx and those for some of these guys that are fishing like big water big water. I was hanging out with some guy’s last night. They're fishing Georgia Bay and they're talking about that spool capacity for like just really covering water and we got onto that Daiwa Lexa because like with the Tranx for me that seems a little bit big of a frame for me and that's a personal preference, but if you're looking for a reel and you're looking to get geared up on that. I actually kind of like that that Lexa 500 is in my last little commentary on new gear coming in but that's an interesting reel because you do have this capacity with a slightly smaller frame. And I know there's some people they love the Tranx 500. It just doesn't physically fit for my my file style of fishing but we're gabbing about that pretty heavy last night

That that is a pretty interesting thing if you need a big spool capacity

Give her a look Jay. Give her a look. Well, what else is going on?

What would you say that what's the weather looking like right now? It's kind of the vibe up there. Are we coming around? Is it going to be okay for the walleyes and leaning into muskies or is it just icy?

That sure is yeah, it's looking great. Yeah, we had 60s last few days here and pretty decent forecast for this week too. I'm supposed to be cooler next weekend but everything's open everything's wide open and which is really early ice out for us. So Uh, that that could be a very beneficial thing for the spring and we'll get stuff cooking a little bit earlier and yeah. I mean, yeah, we're not it's only a few more weeks till general opener in Wisconsin so people can start fishing walleyes and all that stuff. So, I hear you more on that later

We're on that later here very soon folks. There'll be wetting their worms for Northwoods walleyes. Wet your worm anyway, let's do some q&a here before I go to bed. Jay. I've been I'm not a lot of sleep here talk

Hey wonder if there's any drawbacks using monofilament for leaders opposed to fluorocarbon

I've only heard about scene and use fluorocarbon. I've made my own for a few years now and the fluoro works but mono is substantially cheaper and cost. So, I've thought about trying it, but having it personally I won't use anything under 200-pound fluorocarbon because I had a bad experience with 130

Continues so he didn't like 130 busy in 200. He switched to a no BS system mostly and it's been great due to listing you guys. Thank you very much

Uh going back episodes and yeah, so he's listening to everything sort of catching up here. Yeah, boogers started that no BS system if you guys don't know which is removing the snap off of your leader. And you had fixed your you adhere you replaced your baits with you split rings, right?

When I was over in Holland we did that that that Big Netherlands Pike video here. Right, we were that's what the guys over there. They don't like snaps in general for the big girls not team. Look up with the Krakens. We were doing no BS the entire time. And even with the swim baits and I was like come on I’m. Jay, can I can I tell you something you'd never believe is lazy? I'm so A.D.D. I'll use my split ring pliers every like if they're not tight. Okay, if I could get a pair of split ring pliers that just hung around my neck, you know, I’m like a lanyard. But that's my problem and it's a little bit of the guide thing if I want to switch baits on somebody really quick. I'm not gonna be a little bit too realistic or if I’m switching two or three baits at a time, you know, I’m saying I mean it's

Well, yeah, tell her Jodie to get you a bat belt

Bat belt. That's next we have musky wrist in the musky belt and its musky bat belt

Hold on my Dr. Juice spritzer. It's just right there in the center

Looks like a bottle of mace, but it's Dr. Juice

Where's my split ring pliers? It's right here zip zip Knife. Where's my Phillips head for adjusting Titan weights here it is or your Smitty file. That's right Smity file hangs right in the middle. You won't be able to sit down with the musky bat belt, but it looks great and it works very operationally

Understanding yeah perfect for a freaking masonry work and musky fishing. But just don't sit down just you not sit down. You get hurt. No matter what you there's no liability if you sit down. Ever again. It's not even when you're wearing it Jay. It's so dangerous. You can never sit down again

Um. But anyway

The no bs system is the probably the most sound system there is for fixing a lure. As far as the weight of the fluorocarbon, I have yet to have a 130 issue. However, this guy's not the first person I've ever heard say it happens it happens it is I haven't either but you're right. Yeah, right and so some people are like oh how It could be a litany of things from a bad batch to do just the perfect angle who knows, regardless fluorocarbon is it has there's a benefit of fluorocarbon that it has cut proof of if you have never done this and

Is expensive as fluorocarbon leaders can be in some capacity not many people are going to sit there and try to cut them with scissors. But of course, I'm a giant man, baby Jay. I try to cut them with scissors in the past to see if they're really cut proof, you know. Sure, because I’m an idiot

Um. You do if you get like grand slam hard mono

And you compare that to a fluorocarbon like a Seagar or some of these other brands. The monofilament it's it if you put abrasions on it or cut on it. It's far easier to mar mark and damage. So that's why I think the avoidance for a hard mono leader is right

Obviously hard mono is yeah, it's gonna be less. It's gonna be more visible in the water floral carbon is

Is it blends in? It's more it's that whole salt water thing. It's more now water and it's more pliable now with that being said I actually use Grand Slam hard mono filament for my fly leaders. So, when I got on the fly, because of the cost of monofilaments so as far as like a casting leader. I do not recommend hard mono filament, but they use heavy duty hard mona filament for billfish, right?

Freaking Marlin and sailfish here. I will use hard mono as an extension or a snubber

Right, so if I want to make say a 48-inch fly leader, I'll use hard mono for most of it and then I'll use like a thin multi strand and connecting the flies now with that being said it's tangential. And we don't talk fly fishing a lot because it's a small niche, but I will say this. I always use the no BS. I always use a split ring on my fly setups. Most people are like can going through all this regularly roll to connect a fly. It's a musky and a split ring a small was not gonna screw you up. So, you can implement hard mono in that methodology. I think safely. I have used it to extend. As a snubber using like Dipsy Divers and some other baits, but I never trust hard mono filament as a bike guard, Right? Maybe I'm wrong. I'm not I'm literally not sitting here and trying to be knowledgeable in every leader material they're possibly as I've always found hard mono as a pretty safe way to extend things. I just don't have the confidence in it as a direct bike guard on a big fish. I don't think it's gonna matter on a 150-pound hard mono. I think would hold up just fine to a 35. Somebody's getting mad that I said it, but I don't think it'd be an issue, but if you're concerned with the weight. If you if this gentleman and protect or tucker or tuck he's concerned with 130 braking but considering going to hard mono. If you're dealing with fish that or that caliber you're dealing with that situation I think you would be far better off to stick with your fluoro carbonate the cost but hard mono for everybody else. No one really talks about that because it's going to apropos, you know, I'm saying Jay

It's got to be fluoro or leader. You can use it. You can use it for certain things

I just don't use it for the last bit that is most likely to come in contact with a musky's mouth because we don't want to a lose a fish with a bait. It's mouth bait in its mouth. You know I'm saying that's kind of like the kiss of death. That's my only concern there.

Well, keep in mind too that there is very different qualities of fluorocarbon on the market

Oh, yeah, I know a couple people that have and do build fluorocarbon leaders for a living. They've told me some inside stuff on brands that you know Seagar’s great right can't deny it. So, but there's other stuff out there that is lower quality. So that's what it is

Anyway, do we do okay?

What one is this side of the?

Anthony wondering what mapping chip you think is best for Canada my dad is doing another Lake of the Wood’s trip this year. Also thinking about Wabigoon somewhere in the future eventually like to get all of them. Okay, so he goes into this. Here's the problem. There's none of them are good. None of them are good. I have yet to see a mapping chip for okay. Let me take that back. The hummingbird stuff for like the Woods is good. Navionics is good. Eagle, Wabigoon, Lac Soul practically non-existent.

Right in terms of super detail.

No in terms of anything that's not going to get you killed. So, I’m not concerned with bathymetry. I'm worried about anything usable. um Lake of the Woods, everyone that I’m aware of I think there's obviously Hummingbird has theirs or whatever the branding is but there's multiple variations. I don't think one's particularly better than another some people will argue that but Lake of the Woods you can get some info on, but Eagle, Wabigoon, or Lac Sol, nothing that's it's usable. Eagle was scanned a lot of people don't know this, but hummingbird came out and spent tons of time and more lower units than you can imagine Jay by the way. I've seen him sitting and frickin right and driving at the holiday and busted Yamaha lower units one after another. Where they're going out and just running every inch of these places to get good bathymetry good charts, good topographical maps if you will produce


I do not believe that's coming out this year. I asked somebody was in the know I said is that coming out now? They're like no. So, I don't know if that is a matter of they've got to compile that data. Um, and they haven't done it yet or is it coming out? Is it not coming out? Did they not complete it? I don't know but companies have to physically scan these lakes. I was actually on my home water here in Tennessee when C map was out right which is a different company see I've like Hummingbird has their stuff little rants and Lowrance and Navionics and C map by the way are all kissing cousins. Um, so they're all kind of I think not under the same corporate umbrella, but they all are very hyper compatible at least. And then you have hot spots and just a few different things, but C map was out on the water forever, right? Scanning day after day after day. I ended up I want to say four years And I was able to buy that chip. So, I'm not sure why that could the compile the compiling of that data take so long. Wow. Okay. Or if they're doing it regionally or is there going to be solely a chip for Eagle or is this a Northwest Ontario complete and they're going to do every lake so I don't know right now. I do not feel that there is a chip on Eagle Lake, Wabigoon, or Lac Saul that even keeps you anywhere safe because they're not marking hazards. That's the one thing so when you look at and man, I am it's not I'm not the happiest about it when it finally happens. Something that has kept people off of these lakes is the lack of this data, right?

For sure, so Lake of the Woods absorbs far more pressure because there are chips and there are reasonable routes, you know. The other Sheild Lakes are kind of huh you'll learn it one way or another

Yeah, good luck to your bud. Okay, we'll see how let us know how it pans out. Go slow in that area go slow area that 2000-acre area right that see over there where the lake that's the bad part. All right, what part no the whole thing

You know and we always laugh about its talking to her be the other day and in the classic trope people will say it all the time will always find this rock. Herbie and I know her bed not I'm not comparing myself her back on eagle, but I know one side and he knows the other right And there's a lot of commonality there, but there's just one place and he knew in particular And I'm just talking to said man. I literally had to stop the boat and turn the engine off and gather myself last year. Of how close I came. I don't know if I ever said on the podcast. The water was low. Yeah, the little water you're gonna buy it in the periphery of my right eye. I saw the rock and I could have put my hand in the water and just touched it. Mm-hmm, and I'm going 38 40. Like screaming, you know I'm saying in in it that that false sense of security if I know this place. Well, you subtract that much water and that rock sure shot up there. You know and the waves were right that day and. I stopped the boat and I'm personalized with like you okay. It's like I just need a minute. I was like literally kind of like freaked out because you just I lord knows what would have happened hitting it that fast and that big of a rock so Eagle and there's a price entry to Eagle which is take a guide or rip your lower unit off. Hmm, you know and one guide trip's not gonna learn you much as far as like. You you'll learn a lot about how to fish it, but you're not learning a lot of routes, but one thing I'll say is this there's a benefit to taking like, you know, Danny Herbeck or Steve or one of these guys and say hey, I want a fish Eagle. I want to use you for your time, but I'm not worried about catching a fish, right. Routes are far more valuable on new big water than catching fish you're gonna learn about patterning a good guy can't keep his mouth shut. No matter how already tried right Jay. That's half my problems in my life, right? If I could keep my mouth shut my life would be far easier but a good guide is gonna pontificate throughout the course of the day and you know and even if you tell a guy hey, I'm not worried about catching a fish inevitably as a matter of pride he's still gonna try to put you on one, but don't be afraid to hire a guide to learn routes safe routes and I've done that in the past. um and primarily I've used walleye guides and other species guides. um just to go can you show me how to get from here to here and I think there's some merit in that if you're learning these new waterways. Once there's a chip and it's coming it's the march of progress is unstoppable. Eventually there'll be Uh the bathymetry will be perfect where every rock is marked and everybody can access these bodies of water with that chip and it's coming. Don’t shoot the messenger. I'm just I'm just saying what will happen. There's already grumblings and rumors they're of and when there's that many ripped off lower units somebody's spending some money and I don't think they're going to give up on it and that's going to change the game

It's going to change the game, which is interesting. We'll see but if you're looking for to branch outside of Lake of the Woods. And also, too don't take Lake of the Woods for granted, but there's plenty of good options there, but as far as anywhere else up there don't trust it. Make sure you hire a guide or if you're staying at a lodge, ask the lodge owner to take you out and at least run the routes, right? There's no shame in that game if get me from here to there to there to there. And then you can kind of like as long as you've got your good route you can kind of slowly work your way to that shore, you know, I'm saying you can. Show me where the bad stuff is show me the routes. That's a valuable endeavor for sure or Jay for 39.99, if you send him or lake map of places he's never been he'll mark the hazards to the best of his guessing. Sure, you can try to get your hands on a musky buddy remember musky buddy. I mean he's a I

I mean He's gonna know where to go

Dude, I prefer these lake maps that you just guess where things are at there might be. Remember like Carmack on Johnny Carson. You're just sitting here holding it to your head and you're like I am vision. There's a rock right there

Anyway, Todd. I heard the Tyson verse Paul fight was originally supposed to be at the bash

I know right

Was it true that they were worried about Jay wearing a singlet and trying to take Tyson to the top rope?

I believe so I could beat that punk to a pulp absolutely

Also, do you have any suggestions for another bait that would go well in a trolling spread to compliment the action? Similar to a super shad rap keep on keeping on brother

Brother it's capitalized if you capitalize brother. It's Hulk Hogan. Shad Rap that tight little thing. Man, I'm telling you and I've been doing well on Slammer Fatty

Yep, and Slammer five and Shad now another body

And the Bulldozer by Livingston. Yeah, and something I really like that is funky. I don't know if they're still made. I'm probably there they were new a minute ago. Let me make check the name on this

What is this?

Super Shadow Rap 16. The Shadow Rap remember these things Jay, they still make them

Yeah, I've been limited numbers. We've got some it was like not popular. It's kind of this is like jerk twitch bait, but it's got this little shovel lip on the front, flat profile. It's not because it's another rap club . If I'm running Slammers because Shad Raps and one thing I'd say to guys if

And he's if he's looking for a compliment for Shad Raps. He's catching fish on Shad Raps. You'll find bodies of water. There's a few in particular where it's like Shad Raps. That's the that's the primary bait for water trolling multi line open water trolling. I like to throw this thing in the fray and it's not a pure wobble. It's kind of this Herky jerky messed up thing. And so, if I say I have the luxury of a four spreads I can put four lines out in a spread of trolling rods and I'm confident Shad Raps are going to do something. I might throw this guy out there to have kind of that odd man out


And I try to do that with trolling spreads that have similarity so. Obviously, I love Supernatural Big Baits and I’ll run you know four Headlocks at a time. Well, that's great, but what I like to do is maybe run if I let's say I know they're on 10-inch Headlocks, I'll run three 10-inch Headlocks and I'll run the Grandma, Titan or I’ll run a Sledge or I’ll run Uh, god, all these baits that they don't make anymore. There was the Hex from Phantom

Don't you as long when you're dialed in on a bite. It's smart to have an odd man out. And when I say odd man, that's like when people bass fishermen fish like Alabama rigs. Um, which are these multi arm rigs and we had the Musky Bamas. We'll try to get more soon. It's the custody again small bit small batch bait problems but having the odd man out on a rig for bass fishermen they'll have like four White plastics and one chartreuse that's slightly bigger or Something that just stands out from that pack. So, if you got a school of shadow wraps coming through there something funky. You could get away with quite a few different baits, but there's the wonder and he's particularly saying that action and Slammer Fatty Minnow is gonna be more aggressive, but that could be conducive to what you're looking for. Um The other thing that pops in my mind that I think would be pretty solid in that same genre that same motif are the and I can't remember which bait is jig. You have to help me here. It's tom lebo is it like the super shallow Reef Digger like he's got the opining little guy with the soft plastic tail with the metal lip. Do you want the model is on that or what that's called?

Yeah, those are shallow Reef Diggers. I'm a straighter jointed. Yeah, they come two ways

Well, there's a lat one with let's join it only well and that's the thing I was thinking

In the past it's been a hot minute but running like creek chubs and the end and the Reef digger is similar in some regard, right? Yeah, or a Smitty Short Tail

Yeah, so that that that has some something or a tracer tail, you know

Yeah, if you can't catch fish on it, you could always stab somebody

We're both all right jaybird

Sam, I'm slightly new to musky fishing, but I love all the cool baits in this sport. I have some Hellhounds and some Phantoms, but I've been eyeing Hot Tails. What's the benefit of buying a custom glider for some of the more affordable ones? Well, we've talked about this a little bit, but it's always worth covering Jay. The typical motif or the typical kind of vibe with your Hellhounds and your Phantoms now the Phantoms have an insert weight where you can change this, but there's gonna be slightly shallow running where Hot Tails he makes some heavier weighted stuff. And you know the custom nature that is more about like the wobble. Build quality what would and that's not to say the build quality on others anything different. But what would you say?

Do you like its sort of like the real demarcation one of their differential on. A custom glider like a mini-chummer. Right Lynch ’em. I mean traditional wood baits versus molded injected. I mean, that's the age-old wood quality. Sometimes it speaks for itself. I mean you described it well, you know, it's just like it's not that the sink rate is that quicker. But they attain a little bit more depth and they have a fantastic, you know Wiggle to well you could get the that's a thing

Here's the deal you can get the right action and the right running depth with just about any bait. You're gonna have to augment it, right? So, you could do slightly bigger hooks on a on a Hellhound or do this or do that or add a weight to a Phantom. Where it just kind of like straight out of the tackle box. You know like the what's the one he has?

Anthony made it with the drop in tracer. No, I'm not sure. I think it look just look at the Musky Shop folks. They’re all there. Yeah, no get Nugget. There you go the Nugget so I was on over the course of winter plenty of glide bait bites, right? I think I talked about it so Hellhound great bait really easy for a client to work. There's a lot of times I'll grab the Nugget and put a client on a Hellhound both of us would have action but it was a matter of the Nugget. It was running deeper faster where the Hellhound is having people count it down and there's days. I was swapping and putting people in the Nugget. It just was about how we're addressing the situation structurally right how proximity if we need to get down where they're all good and it's like I'm I break my baits down via a hierarchy of running depth. I just do I mean it's like what's talking this seminar in Canada? Proximity I think proximity to a musky is 90% of the game right the other 10% is size of profile right and action. But if there's something there close to it, it's probably gonna check it out. Now the rest dictates how fast it's moving right and is the right for each size for that time of year oversimplification, but each glide bait run slightly different in the water column. So, my choice between say Okay, great example here. I'm choosing glide bait let's look at Manta. Manta has a shell has a super shallow, which runs I mean just below the surface

Yeah barely sinks at all barely sinks at all. It's a super shallow

It's like the walk the dog top water. Under the water barely darting back and forth which by the way, that's a deadly secret for Canada muskies by the way My friends. I don't think I've ever said that 10-inch Manta. I didn't. Is it a 10-inch super shallow? I think they have I'm a crazy. I have I have like no the thing can just come to the one way

Okay making sure here because I didn't know if they made that because I know I have the ones they have like the red hooks So there's the super shallows here because they're all lined up next my top waters nonetheless The white ones and the black one’s super shallow . o whack, whack, whack, whack, whack just subsurface heck of a follow-up for bucktail fish in the summer in Canada. If you can't get them to go on top that bait is a great throwback or a great little thing to have on hand now the big one is pretty dang buoyant and if it's a fast fish you're in good shape, right?. So, if you don't need if you're if you're working the super shallow or the manta both of them run particularly shallow per se. So, in the hierarchy of glide baits if I'm going for the shallow wish running glide baits that I typically use the Manta super shallow followed by just the standard Manta because I don't feel like the standard Manta really achieves tremendously much more depth without extended pauses, right?

Right once you start working that bait. It's pretty high in watercolor in theory. Think about this. I'm glad all they do is fall, Right? A glide bait with no force applied to it does nothing but fall it wobbles and falls, right? Crank baits if you just no force a crank a weighted crank bait would be shimming you know advanced just from the design of the bait whatever I'm trim. You know, I see it on my head. I'm in it but the running depth of our current or our glide baits is dictated by their overall general weight, Right?

It so they're how heavy they are and how much we pause them will influence the running depth. So, if I need a fast shallow Glide bait. I'm going to think that super shallow if I need a deep fast running glide bait I'm looking somewhere else where I will look to the hot tails, right? Far sooner than I would a Manta Or if I just need a moderate it gets down a foot it gets down two feet or I can work it slightly quicker for weed tops and tapered down a hellhound is completely perfect for that application. A Phantom would fall in that same moderate conditions, right? So, and again, I don't know if this bodes to all I could we could sort of work through a bit most of your baits that become perennial favorites, right? Jay think of it this way baits that are like kind of huh. That's a household name If you look at them as a whole they're typically moderate condition baits Why is that would you agree with that?

Let's name a staple bait Jay

What's a bait that's like just not a buck tail but like a hard bait that you just go boom. This is a household name hard bait


Okay, so a Suick dive and rise. Let's say what weighted or unweighted either or right. The deepest a Suick is going to run in general without augmentation is what four-five depending on the bait love Suicks got a ton of them don't fish them anymore, but nonetheless fish them for years. That's a moderate condition bait. A Shallow Invader is a moderate condition bait fissure in that upper part of the water calm and moderately active. So, the baits that most people gravitate to that become iconic household baits are for average conditions. For anglers that you have average applications

Yeah, I guess your point, you know, right?

Look at Tally Whackers. You look at Hog Wobblers. Right. Okay. They're surface baits. Yeah, Shallow Raider, right?


And I, Joes when my best friends on planet earth and he went get mad when I said a well-trained monkey could catch a musky on a Shallow Raider. Right how trained this monkey is up to you in your mind Jay how what? Whatever degree of training he has is up to you. But a monkey with a musky rod given enough cast could catch a at least a 35 on a Shallow Raider. It's an easy application bait for moderate conditions. Right and I'm on a rat down a rabbit hole here. But this is how I sort of differentiate my glide baits. It kind of baits everything else. What I'm talking about custom baits and when I select a. More boutique bait heck we're talking about this show and those crazy gliders are when I'm looking at a custom bait, I'm far less interested in its paint, I'm far less interested in the fit and finish than I'm what is its structural conditional applications and does it bring value? Not value intrinsic value does it bring value to my fishing where a Hot Tails is far more apt to run quickly at depth. Then a they hell out right so I'm going to turn to the Hot Tails when muskies are genuinely negative and neutral but below the level of light penetration because that bait being even slightly heavier is below the level of light penetration. Easier faster and allows for a quicker more aggressive retrieve. If to trigger a fish than counting down and slowly working a Phantom or a Hell Hound below the level of light penetration. When those baits are far more applicable in moderate conditions, and I hadn't really it's not something I've like wrote this down, but it's sort of struck me when we're talking that most of the iconic baits that are staples are moderate condition baits. For moderate difficulty where I guess it's true a bait that a Top Raider right super popular bait. Yet again the same trained monkey could catch a musky on it right Yeah, I mean the popular baits catch numbers when fish are active, you know, right and but they're in the sleeper baits are you know but they're more designed for inappropriate poor conditions when numbers are low and they're not specialist baits where I would say a bait that comes to mind as a specialist bait

We're getting away from gliders here, but a specialist bait to me would be something again tom la beau like his big reef digger

Right. Not many people spend significant amount of time making bottom contact plus 15 feet. Right, I could find you more guys that would talk about doing it than have probably done it in the last five years. Where they're dialed in on a pattern of bottom contact at 15 to 18 feet for continued period of time. Not many people do it because it's not it's not easy, it's a pain in the butt you have to understand patterning seasonality where the fish are or what speeds we need to be at the line length and we need to get that bait there so that is a specialist bait

Right. Yeah, whereas a Hellhound back to our gliders a hell henna Phantom are a very much a Part and parcel this bait will definitely work when we're dealing with active fish and moderate conditions. They're going to be good now. I'm not saying they don't excel in excellent conditions for highly active fish. I’m saying if these aren't negative or neutral things, but if I'm doing with negative neutral fish that are holding deeper than typical active fish in the littoral zone and they're holding deeper than four or five feet. That's when I'm start thinking custom baits. That's when I start thinking specialist baits. Baits that are going to get down to where the fish are right now

We we're talking the customization of gliders because what you'll see Primarily in my mind is you have custom Diving rise baits you have custom glide baits and you have custom crank baits bucktails a bucktails a bucktail. There's plenty of ways to skin that cat, right?. But when it comes to my glide baits. That's where I'm thinking there now but from a design standpoint though when you look at say like with the Titan. It's the same concept of why we did the multiple weightings. So, you can sort of get that thing where you want it to be or like the crack and like with jerk baits. You know jerk baits sort of supersede that because big rubber sort of came in and it works at all depths, right? But primarily if you look at how rubbers worked and the sales volume of rubber most of its mid and anyway, right? But most of your baits and just the way you look at most of the baits that are just kind of like non custom

Let me let me back that statement up one second. There's plenty of custom baits and plenty of high-end baits that are probably not specialist baits So don't think it because it's a custom bait the specialized tool like the musky belt jay was trying to hawk on people but what I would say is if you're looking at custom baits and your in goal is more muskies in the net seek out custom baits that serve a specialized purpose. That's when their value and the dollar spent on that bait supersedes buying a what I would call a staple bait like a Hellhound

Right because a Nugget and a Hellhound and this is just my observation in my experience. It's not as if say like one of the Hot tails Nuggets glides. A mentally easier or further side to side than a Hellhound per se but it achieves depth with a more erratic action. Far quicker and far easier from a methodology standpoint. So, we have to think less we work it down And it's all about how you skin the cat as a manufacturer or creator. Now the flip side of the thing I'm sitting here with wall full of frickin you know glide baits where you look at. The bit and the warlock and he has a tunable tail to kind of like fight that battle

So, he's thinking well, I can get the versatility here. So, you might be able to take a warlock and now you have a glide bait that is dual purpose or multipurpose through tunability. Right so if you're comfortable with that and you're on the body of water where Warlocks tend to work and you're comfortable with tuning them. Is the benefit of a custom bait or a more expensive bait?. Does that supersede the tunability of the warlock?

Because it's not about having the right bait on it's about the right action at the right depth, So dollars don't buy muskies. And you know what heck this is everything comes it's everything cyclical and I guess it's where my brains at Jay, but you know seeing high in baits or seeing expensive baits you can't buy you can't there's not a monetary amount you can stick on the hook that a muskie will bite. Right, no of course no. So, I've said it before and I'll say again lures are tools to accomplish a job if you want to even ruin it even more and say we're puppeteers like I did the one time but where are you trying to target what depths are you trying to target? And what is the most effective?

Presentation to get there that is the important way to make lures selection and I think. From lures selection you got to buy the thing Before you can select your tackle box. So, purpose driven running depth and how quick were they achieve depth should probably be your first consideration while making a new purchase

Okay Yeah That makes which is like this okay

I played some guitar this week in jay, like sitar. Well, if you're gonna frickin play in a country band you don't buy a sitar. You don't buy an Indian sitar when you need a telecaster. You know if you're gonna deliver drywall, you don't buy a frickin ford fiesta. So, it takes the funsies out of it. You know at a certain point when you we do it for a living you're going

I'm less blown away by the ooh and the all and I'm more going what's this tool gonna do for me? Will it produce in result? And I think that's it's not a jaded way to look at it's just a realistic way where I go. Okay, how many shallow running crankbaits are there jay Sure, not even at the Musky Shop ever I would bet you there are over Brands that have come and gone brands that have tried to be in the musky market brands that have failed brands that have shut down brands have sold. You could probably sit here and make a list of minimally 1500 musky shallow crankbaits that run from zero to four

Sure easy.

How many of them cross pollinate? Have a similar action right because action is just vibrational profile how many of them have a similar action and running depth that they cancel each other out


How many of them just you could have one or you could have the other and they cross pollinate so much that there's not a benefit of owning one over the other right

Sure, okay. Yeah, you see what you see where I'm getting at with that

Yeah, that selection and it's not the fun way of stocking the tackle box. Because I think sometimes too and I again coming off the hills of the show and I'm sitting here I didn't bring anything home except for one bait because if I brought one more to think the walls will collapse Okay, I'm the biggest bait hoarder. There is so the hypocrisy is real folks right? You know, I you don't have to have it. I like to have it, but the hypocrisy is thick. Where you could eliminate 90% of this room

Because of cross pollination. Mm-hmm. Okay. Yep

That's I think the big consideration. So are we going to look at gliders back to this guy's thing and you know, it doesn't it doesn't take that train monkey Jay. To fall maybe easier to do with crankbaits and slow diving crank is that it would be to do with gliders because there are so many different levels of true gliding true walk the dog side to side action within the glider market. Yeah, that's what I'm saying

Just talk about. Yeah, I mean look at the difference between a man to and a Phantom is great. I would say the width of the glide is a consideration you say that and that's a fair point, right. Um

What I got here, there's a Phantom. There's a Lynch ‘em. Some of the Dog's you know, I would say in those baits like the width of the glide is narrower than The Mantas and the Warlocks. I think Warlocks and Mantas have more width to the glide like the side of the side the pitch of the glide too, you know. On a vertical plane there is a you know, let's say a vertical plane constitutes a glide

Mm-hmm a lot of these especially the wood ones

They don't adhere to that plane. They're doing different things. They're up slightly when they go to the left and they're you know what I mean? Well, there's an erratic thing to I think that that is

That's a fair point where you will find with the wooden gliders

Okay, you're. I'm going where you're going here, but what you have narrowed the focus even more, right. Where if I'm saying staple baits are moderate baits, right. What you're seeing though in commenting on which is very true some of the custom baits. Instead of left right there slightly. Left and up right and down and then wobbly and more erratic. Where that action can trigger more fish. It can be achieved with a moderate inexpensive bait. But is easier to achieve with a custom bait, right? Because I can take a Hellhound and if you worked properly if you want to make a Hellhound go left and up augment your angle, right? You can rip them down but what I like where you're going with this is what's easier. You're spending the time to learn how to do that with a custom a stock bait or buying a custom bait where it's kind of built intrinsically. And quite often visually you're not going to be able to really detect on how that thing's operating, you know

It's running. Yeah, you should be able to which is you should play all the first third of the cast the first third of the cast, you know, it's windy. It's darker water. You know the base. Yeah a little bit of depth. It's hard to see how it's reacting. You gotta you gotta sort of visualize and feel it and that's a whole other that again. Time on the water. Yeah, that's where the difficulty, you know. Level is greater in that type of bait if you got one that does it for you out of the box

You're slicing. I like that. I like the way

You're slicing the cheese here because you're making my bringer somewhere else. Which is like what's easier Jay to buy a hot rod or build a hot rod

Right, right you got the money you can go down there and buy a classic car. You've got to have the skill to build it yourself and I'm not saying build and bait. I'm saying you want the action out of the box now. How do we pick that action is where I’m going, right?

But you're you do make a fair point where some of these baits that kind of have the thing built into them. That's merits to spend the bucks for I would say in gliders though, you nailed the and it's difficult to explain if you've never seen it because the belly rock is huge with glide baits, right? Like what it does on the pause but Hottails do you want it to be you want it to be in that? Yes, you don't yeah, don't that if you're glide bait just kind of falls like dead Right like a dead stick like a dead stick like it's not rocket. That ain't enough. Mm-hmm. And um

You want that thing to have some motion

Uh, off-axis motion

So, if you're to take your hand and just tilt it left until you know if you stick your hand straight up from your body like you're shaking somebody's hand rock your hand left to right. That's what that glide bait should do in some form or fashion. But you'll find because of the custom weighting and the custom dialing in I’m like a Hottails or say a Lynch’um or some of these other things. It's even more pronounced

So yes, that can happen you can get that from more of the hot rod of the custom baits. I primarily am looking at running depth, but Jay your point is completely taken and seen and meritus because if you don't know and you don't know how to make your baits do that because you can actually take any bait and dial it in. You know i'm saying if you want to play with if you're tweaking baits, but that that's a fair point. I like what you said though about the

Delve in deeper for a second

And I'll let you just take it every second about that linear plane thing of the up down and kind of like how it's shifting. How it's shifting from bait to bait you know i'm saying shifting I like i'm a good glider where it's not the linear planet It’s not left to right on this flat. You know if they're not running just at two feet the whole time

Well, yeah, I mean, okay. Look at classic baits you're talking about classic baits earlier before and these are shallow diving shallow. You know moderate action kind of moderate bite days kind of baits, you know, it's like a take a Smitty jerk bait. For example, it's not a glide bait, but it has glide qualities

I'm kind of going off kilter here, but it's no, it's like that bait. Some people will pick up that bait. It's a wood bait their hand made right okay; it's not molded. It's not you know, that's like setting some dye or anything like that there's a handcrafted little things and it's like you throw that and it's like oh no, I've just seen it a million times where people like they'll switch you know. They'll switch a bait like that after trying one because they think it doesn't it's not working right

It's like oh this thing isn't kicking; you know enough or whatever. Yeah, yeah, it's just like okay. No, but you know what that's like. And that action is responsible so many fish over the decades. You can't even put that in a book so That's the thing with some of these baits. It's just like the true glide of a manta is great

Right. I think that's a fantastic search bait that especially the heavier Manta than sinks. I don't know close to a foot a second. So, I mean you'll start working that thing and if you don't let it sink It's in the two-foot range. Mm-hmm. You're talking you know; you're talking on the you know the light level You're talking about a bait that's trying to trigger, you know active fish. That's what it's doing So on the right day at the right time. That thing is golden no doubt about it, but it's a perfect glide bait. It's walking the dog I might have said vertical plane on a horizontal plane

Yeah, I know what you meant. We both said it wrong, but yes, it's an advancement. Yeah. Yeah

It take a Smutly dog like a seven-inch Smutly dogs take any one of the number of the glide bait versions of the Hot tail gliders

Um, what's another good example of something that's wood and it's got a little bit. It's got a little bit of a flat side to it. Okay. Manta's more of an ovalish roundish kind of body

Right. So yeah, it's wiggling a little bit and it's got a tail on the back Which kind of provides a little bit of dip to it. But you want a bait that's got and I'm not talking about soft tail gliders. What about you talking hard? You can soft tail on anything. Yeah, the tail's great. Everyone wants a tail on their bait in some way shape or fashion, but it's just like without the tail on there. I want a true glide bait that's got that wiggle and like you said at rest that thing when it sinks It's doing the work for you. Yeah

Cast one of those out just pitch it on you know in relatively clear water. So, you can see what that thing does at rest how quick it's achieving depth and then that way. It should be a little bit easier to operate and don't be scared to the fact that the thing is not perfectly guiding left and right because they aren't designed to. It's got to have some erratic nature. Yeah, if it's like that classic trope of like any glide bait. People when they first start throwing these things like I got a gun left right and they're never pausing right or it went left and then it went left

It's like that's okay. You can adjust your retrieve And slack level amount of slack and all that in time in between polls and taps

But we need to the thing is this now you got it and I was so and I sit on the podcast I think a couple years ago I tried to back off gliders because I spent way too much like I spent years like I would just 90 percent of the time throw glide baits. Right and there's some tricks and we need to delve into this where we just take them out of the water. It's another video idea but like you said You'll see like a hot tails where You have that action you're like it's left right and it just kind of messes up right

Mm-hmm. It's supposed to

Yes, it's like the axis of that bait and the way it's weighted and the way a good glide but it you want it to kind of Goober up man but the other thing is this there's some Cool things you can do like you and he said like I can take a hellhound and make it go Left super short right and then left again, you know I'm saying like you get the feel for it. So, I left tony pat so if you got if you can turn the head back. So, you don't have to you don't have to spend a billion bucks. You just have to I think a lot of that is like what I was saying in some capacities it is Waiting to me is the most important element the running depth is important because you can overcome the lack of erratic or the lack of Quote-unquote mojo through skill, but that's a matter of time on the water

Yeah, that's kind of the hairy

Where we're rabbit holing on this both of us are because there's no like hard clear like boom, you know

Well, like you just said that was supposed to happen with that bait when it did that thing

It's just like I thought I was just thinking yeah, I think I had an idea Mistakes a bait think about how many times?

When the bait makes a mistake or if you if you're good enough to notice. That the bait made a mistake and that's what triggered it Or you flat out make made a mistake because you had a backlash you had an overrun the lure floats the top. Next thing you know, it's for 25 seconds that things on the top and the next half turn you make. Water explodes yeah or the bait sinks to the bottom. You took a bite of lunch. It says like oh crap. That's a sinker then you start bringing it in bam

You get a fish or you get a follow yeah same thing with some of these baits. You know, it's just like when it does that thing that it's not supposed to do. Oh, it just went to the right twice then I stopped it. Yeah, that's what stopped hypnotizing that fish and made them go That thing is dying or fleeing and I need to eat it. Well, you say that god We've been going forever now, but we have you said that about and we're talking mantis, right Yeah, and I've got one manta like because mantis had the rep although hypnotized fish. You said hypnotize and I heard that yeah

They go left to right so easy that people just never stop them And I had one and I just did this death spiral thing and I still have it. And I don't have another doesn't quite as well. It like quirk screws down jay. It always turns to the right. It like I hate to I've got so many fish on that bait because it just falls and quirk screws down and it just gets drilled you know, and you know, okay. Oh, it does like in it will always if you let it go too long, it'll grab the leader, right?

But like if I see one behind it with that bait, I'll go blah blah blah We go okay. How long do I have and when it turns and it turns back towards the fish forget about it

It's like this death spiral to the right and then and you're going

That's kind of like one of those things where you get a good when you get a bad when you get something with for lack of a better term mojo

You try to tweak it; you know where it shouldn't do that

But that's the magic where the erratic nature Of certain things is I guess the trigger god we can go on forever. No Jay I have to catch up on sleep here. You've learned about the Canadian trip. We talked about gliders for way too long There's something wrong with us

Pretty much everything

You name it Steve you got it, baby. I'll talk to you later. Jay bird. Say good night. Yep. Thanks everybody