Senior Writer Tim Huffman shares his take on some products for fishermen and outdoorsmen
New Product Buzz
by Tim Huffman
K9 Fishing High-Vis, Fluorocarbon Premium Line
There are hundreds of good lines on the market, so why K9 High-Vis Fluoro? Because it is a good alternative line that handles great. I tested this line by casting light jigs and by trolling crankbaits. The eight-pound test was strong for the rating, allowed crankbaits to get deep and performed like a good line should. It does cast great with no unexpected problems.
Eric Cagle won the 2020 Crappie Masters National Championship. Cagle says, “I use K9 high-vis fluoro in six-pound-text. It doesn’t hold memory like mono. That’s huge for me knowing that I’m not going to get loops in the line, especially on my guide trips. Also, I can leave it on my reel longer without worrying about memory.”
Kelly Albert, K9 founder and president, says, “The line has low memory. I wanted to have a line that behaves on a spinning reel but has the stealth properties underwater of a fluorocarbon. We had to infuse nylon Nanopolymers into the line to create the handling and low memory, yet we maintained invisibility underwater. Most crappie fishermen aren’t fond of fluorocarbon lines just because they’ve tried 100% and it was stiff and knots were a problem. Now we’ve got a line that behaves like mono, longer lasting and a line that allows an easy, strong Palomar Knot. Don’t be afraid of this line because it’s not high-vis under water.
K9 High-Vis Fluoro is proven by many pro fishermen. It is not 100% fluorocarbon so it has a little stretch and better handling. It’s affordable at $19.99 for a 550-yard spool. $14.99 for 300 yards. www.K9fishing.com
Pico Lures has a good lineup of crappie baits including rabbit hair jigs, plastics and crankbaits. The INT Crankbaits are a great choice for trolling or pushing because of their action and diving depth. They run straight without having to tune them. They have a medium wobble for a good all-around action. They’ll run up to 18 feet when trolled with 10-pound-test line. The main body is 2.0 inches long and overall, including the bill, is 3.5 inches.
Brad Wiegmann, guide, media specialist and trolling expert, says, “What makes this bait so good is that it comes out of the mold the same every time so it tracks straight and true out of the box. There’s no tuning to do. It runs 12-feet with 40 feet of line out on a planer board. You can get to 18 feet trolling. Precision Trolling has an app that includes the Pico INT so you can troll exact depths based upon line length and line size when using the bait.”
Wiegmann says planer boards are a good option when trolling. They get the baits out to the side so they catch crappie that might be spooked by the boat going directly over them. Concerning colors, he says Geezer Clown is a good but one of the top sellers in 2020 was the Pink Splatterback while fishermen in Mississippi wanted Grenada Green. MSRP is $5.99. www.picolures.com
Night fishing for crappie is nothing new. Fishermen used lanterns for many decades before better lighting options were available. Today you can take a look across some lakes during the summer and it looks like a floating city of lights. Other lakes that would be great nighttime spots get little or no attention, so there are great, untapped opportunities for catching crappie using lights. Without a doubt, night fishing produces some of the fasting crappie fishing possible. When a school of shad starts swimming around the lights, bigger fish are sure to follow. A school of crappie can lead to non-stop action. The key to any good night crappie fishing trip is quality lights to attract baitfish.
The Deerback brand floating Crappie Light vacuum-locks the water and attracts fish with a bright, underwater spotlight. The light attracts crappie, white bass, stripers and many other fresh and saltwater fish. It is also a great emergency spotlight for boat, car, camper or trailer. It is made from tough, long-lasting engineering plastics and has a great price point. MSRP $29.99.