How Crappie Psychic Crappie Trailers began

Clyde Folse didn’t grow up to be a fishing tackle manufacturer.

Rather, like thousands of other young Cajun men, the Des Allemands native was happy to land a secure job in the petrochemical or oil and gas production industries.

His was in the Monsanto Company’s chemical plant in Luling.

But crappie fishing was always a passionate hobby of his.

“Henry Christen, an old man from Des Allemands, taught me a lot about fishing sac-a-lait in the Bayou Black area,” Folse explained. “I usually fished with a tube jig under a cork, but I tinkered with shiners every now and then. I stopped using shiners 15 years ago.

“I don’t go to feed sac-a-lait; I go to catch them.”

A lot of the men with whom Folse worked at Monsanto were fishermen. And a lot of those were bass fishermen.

“They kept talking about using trailers and how trailers helped them catch fish,” Folse said. “So about 4½ years ago, I went to Academy Sporting Goods and looked for a bait that I could cut up to make trailers for sac-a-lait fishing. I ended up buying some saltwater plastic minnow baits.

“I cut them up with a razor blade. When you cut with a razor blade, you get square edges. The 4 square edges catch the water and make the trailer flutter.”

He offered an example to illustrate his point.

“Drop a marble into an aquarium: It goes straight down,” Folse explained. “Drop a quarter in: It flutters down.”

Folse and his son Caleb began using the chopped-up trailers with great success.

“We would get to the landing and would have 35 to 40 more fish than others who were fishing Lake Boeuf,” the elder Folse said.

But he wasn’t ready to share what led to his catches.

“I used to be very secretive,” Folse chuckled. “We removed and hid the trailers before we came in.

“I would tell (other fishermen) that I was using black-and-white tube jigs.”

One day after a trip, Caleb broached the subject of selling trailers.

“‘Dad, I know you are secretive and like to have edges to catch fish, but we need to start a company,’” Clyde Folse related. “He came up with the ‘The Crappie Psychic’ name.”

At this point, Caleb, who had been listening quietly, piped up.

“I came up with the name because when I was young, he would tell me where to cast and I would catch a fish,” Caleb said. “It amazed me: I really thought he was a sac-a-lait psychic.”

The Folses stocked their first trailers in G&F Sporting Center in Raceland in July 2014. Things were slow at first, Clyde admitted.

“Sac-a-lait fishermen are stubborn, and they all have their favorite baits,” he said. “What helped is that they don’t have to change their baits. My bait just enhances their bait.

“Growth in demand has been steady. We ship the bait throughout the South, and are moving into Texas and other states. We also sell direct to the public though our website.”

It’s still a family-centered business. All their baits are hand-poured, and colored by Clyde and Caleb. Nothing is outsourced.

The most-popular color is chartreuse, followed by flamingo.

Clyde’s daughter Kamri named the latter color.

Whenever the Folses come up with something new, they meet as a family and vote on the name. For more about the family, see the Seafood Bible column, which features wife Janelle’s delicious cooking.

While the company’s bread and butter is its 1.6-inch crappie trailers, they also produce 2.6-inch speckled trout trailers and 7-inch mega trailers for offshore fishing.

Clyde noted both trout trailers are finding favor in bass fishing circles for use on crankbaits, stick baits and frogs.

Mega trailers can be rigged weedless like a plastic worm, as well.

Soon to be released will be their own form of crappie nibble, specially flavored with Psychic Sauce, the same juice now found only in the sealed bags of crappie and trout trailers.

If all this isn’t enough to keep this man busy, Clyde Folse has become a licensed charter captain (985-790-0862) who specializes in crappie charter trips in Lake Boeuf and Bayou Black, and freshwater catfish trips in Bayou Des Allemands.

About Jerald Horst 959 Articles
Jerald Horst is a retired Louisiana State University professor of fisheries. He is an active writer, book author and outdoorsman.