Monday, December 19, 2011
The Alabama Rig is the newest sensation to hit the water after Paul Elias destroyed a field of Bassmaster pros on Lake Guntersville. As seen in the picture above, the rig imitates schooling baitfish and it seemed to be a deadly tool when targeting suspending fall bass. This technique has been mostly utilized by Striped Bass fisherman and other saltwater fish chasers under a different fitting name, the umbrella rig.
My analysis of this rig needs to pertain to MN and WI fisheries. Each state has their own regulations as to how many fishing lines and hooks are allowed to be in the water at one time to catch fish. Also, the tournaments we fish have their own regulations that represent the regulations that govern the entire circuit across the country. Will this rig be tied on to one of my rods this season?
In Minnesota, we are not allowed to fish with more than one rod, or line, at a time during the open water season. During the winter months where we ice fish, we are allowed to use two lines. So we have one line in the water but a bait tied on with 5 separate lures and each have a hook, the Alabama Rig. Is this legal? In the state of MN, this is not legal, as each separate bait is considered its own line. For instance, we can't throw a Rapala with another Rapala tied on to the back split ring, and then tie another Rapala on to that last split ring.
The question is, how can this lure be relevant to Minnesota and Wisconsin waters? Well we know that it was a success because the bass love to chase schools of bait fish when they become suspended in the fall. Can we modify this a bit to imitate bait fish without all the separate baits? I think this is a very viable option. I have ideas already spinning in my head that will take this idea, and with a few modifications, will be a great legal way to represent a school of bait fish here in MN. Also, this rig might not be relevant during most of the summer months. It was a huge success because fall bass chase schools of bait fish, but will they attack a school of bait fish post spawn?
My take...let's just catch fish the best way we can while still being conscience of wildlife management and our own state regulations.
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