The Musky Maina Dock is a Secret Weapon for Saltwater Striper Anglers

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One of the author’s battle-scarred Musky Mania Docs.

1 of the author’s battle-scarred Musky Mania Docs. (Cliff Gardiner &amp John Keller/)

I guess you could say we had been “reverse surf-fishing.” My pal Craig Cantelmo, a veteran of the Extended Island striper scene, was glued to the helm. We had been so close to the beach at Montauk that he kept vigilant watch to make positive we stayed behind the breakers. This was 2015, and it was the very first time I ever threw a Musky Mania Doc. This 9-inch Spook-style topwater weighs upward of three ounces, which produced it uncomplicated to bomb a mile toward the beach. Functioning it, on the other hand, produced my wrist and shoulder burn. According to Cantelmo, there was no such factor as also aggressive. He also produced a assure: “Whether they consume that factor or not, if there are stripers about, they’ll come up and let you know they’re there.” 4 retrieves in, a 20-pounder ghosted up to take a crack. I’d observed the light that hundreds of striper fishermen prior to and right after have come to bask in.

Dark Horse

There are numerous lures that have cult followings, lots of of which had been created for cult fisheries, such as the classic Jitterbug for nighttime largemouth hunters. The Doc is diverse. There has normally been some presence of muskie lures creeping into the salty globe, but the Doc is 1 of extremely couple of that became a correct staple. At least it is now. Even back in 2015, Cantelmo wouldn’t say the name of the lure in the video we had been shooting. There is significantly debate more than who essentially recognized the lure’s potency very first, but it had been a hidden gem in the arsenals of quite a few in-the-know New England captains for years prior to it ever got on my radar. They had currently unlocked the Doc’s code. Unpainted models, which are the colour of bone, seemed to get in touch with up stripers much more regularly than any pattern. The bronze hooks that came stock for muskies would rust right after a day’s use in the brine, so they had to be replaced correct away with heavy-gauge saltwater trebles. Seeing that the Doc often tempted correct cow bass, additional-heavy split rings had been vital to manage the strain of a fight far much more violent than that of even correct trophy muskies. What required no tweaking, on the other hand, had been the Doc’s sound method and profile.

Smash and Burn

To my eye, the Doc is not that impressive in terms of making commotion. There are loads of pencil poppers and surface swimmers that make much more froth and throw much more water. What every person who leans on a Doc agrees upon, on the other hand, is that the profile and internal rattle combine to make the secret sauce. Massive stripers feed on menhaden, which usually measure eight to 12 inches. The Doc is 1 of the couple of topwaters that match that size though sustaining quite fantastic castability. Its capacity to mimic this substantial prey is also the key explanation why it has earned such a reputation when a fish rises to the Doc, it is ordinarily a massive 1. The clack of the heavy steel bearings inside as the bait walks can also be heard from a extended distance, which many—myself included—­believe offers the Doc its uncanny capacity to make stripers seem when nothing at all else will. Considering the fact that the lure has turn into a should-have in my saltwater kit, I’ve employed it to make heavy bass materialize out of a dead ocean on days with nary a blip on the sonar, when reside baits, boxes of other lures, and even techniques like trolling that typically make for the duration of slow outings have blanked.

Study Subsequent: Striped Bass Fishing Lure Modifications

Ten years ago, if you posted a photo of a bass with a Doc in its mouth on social media, you had been lambasted. The term “Doc burn” was even coined as a typical response to such posts on Facebook and Instagram. But now, the secret is out. As opposed to other lures in the bass and walleye arenas that had been the hot ticket for a time till the fish got clever, the Doc does not look to have lost any of its magic regardless of much more anglers throwing it. Even Drifter Tackle, which owns Musky Mania Lures, lastly wised up and started supplying saltwater-prepared models and colors, assisting the firm get a direct piece of the action rather of promoting unpainted Doc bodies to East Coast tackle shops.

I haven’t gotten my hands on 1 of the new models but, and I’m not positive I definitely need to have 1. The Docs I currently personal have been with me for quite a few years now, and while I know I could at some point drop them, it is enjoyable to maintain adding scrapes and scars to my attempted-and-correct warriors.

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