Bottom Bugging for Big Bass!
1:01 PM | Author: Tech Tactical
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A BASS BAIT painstakingly made one at a time at a local angler's home won the biggest bass tournament to hit Oklahoma in three years.

Gene Larew Lures' Biffle Bug has long been in production, but Tommy Biffle took it to a new level and carried the day at the Bassmaster Elite Series Sooner Run tournament. He said every one of the 20 bass he bagged in the event was caught on the lure.

The new combo may in fact be named the "Hard-head Biffle Bug," as tournament winner Biffle said in introducing the bait Sunday on the Bassmaster stage.

The bait is very much a Biffle-developed item.

"We have started the legal process of seeing if that can be the name," said Gene Larew Lures spokesman Gary Dollahon. "We like to talk about him about being so hard-headed in his approach on things and the way he fishes that it would be the perfect name for it."

The Tulsa-based lure company is expediting everything about the yet-to-be-produced lure after Biffle's win this weekend, he said.

Bass fishermen might talk about it as a combination of technique and shape that combines the properties of a football-head jig, shaky jig, Texas rig and a crankbait. Regular folks may come to know it as a weighted, weedless, soft-plastic bait that is simply fished by holding the rod tip
up and cranking to bounce it off rocks and structure. As Biffle said, "It's thump-thump-thump, thump, and set the hook if it's not hitting the rocks because a bass picked it up."

Gene Larew's Biffle Bug, a ribbed beaver-tail type creature bait with Larew's signature salt impregnation and lizard legs, has been on the market for some time. But the weighted heads and hooks have been made one at a time at the home of one of his friends. The folks at Larew are keeping the friend's name close to the vest as they pursue arrangements for commercial production.

The plastic bait used in the Sooner Run was poured specially for Biffle by Gene Larew. It is dark green on top and has red metallic flakes in the lower parts and tail.

"The specific color is dark-backed watermelon pepper neon," Dollahon said. "It is planned as a 2011 color, but we are expediting it. It will be introduced next month at the ICast Show in Las Vegas."

At a tournament two weeks ago, Biffle ran out of the samples and altered others he had on hand. "He was taking a black magic marker and coloring the backs," Dollahon said.

Prior to that tournament, he sat at his friend's house helping him make the jig-headed hooks used with the bait.

A 4-ought wide-gap worm hook is attached to the head by a stainless-steel wire loop set in the football-shaped painted lead head. The jointed design is the key to allowing the creature bait to flip and flop around as the lure is bounced over the rocks, Dollahon said.

"He's made them, bending the wire and poring them in a single-cavity mold one at a time," Dollahon said. "It's a labor-intensive process."

Gene Larew has been talking with a manufacturer about producing the jig heads with the worm hook that swings freely. "We're certainly accelerating our schedule for getting into it," Dollahon said.

The jig and Biffle Bug combo actually is one of two baits the company is working on that use a similar technique, both born of the Grand River system lakes. The company also is working with longtime Grand Lake guide Ivan Martin on a soft-plastic bait for a shaky-head jig technique he has been using that involves a steady retrieve and bouncing lead off rocky substrates.

"Two guys, unbeknownst to each other were using similar baits and a similar type of fishing," Dollahon said. "It's been a somewhat protected technique that started, I believe, in the Table Rock Lake area, only in deeper, clear water. As Oklahoma fishermen always do, they take it from there and make it work for them."


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