Capt. Erik Rue’s fall redfish lures

Capt. Erik Rue’s go-to bait for most of this morning’s fishing trip was a simple jighead and MirrOlure Lil John Twitchbait, but he made a special effort to point out the effectiveness of the Jenny’s Jigs jighead.

“These really work,” Rue stressed, pointing at the three rings on the neck of the jighead. “I don’t understand it. It’s like they make a suction on the bait.

“Those jigheads with the barb will tear the plastic when a fish pulls on the tail. I can fish all day with a single tail on these heads.”

For being a man who makes his living fishing, Rue is surprisingly nonchalant about his lure choices.

“Most people make way too big a deal about baits,” he said. “They get all hung up on colors and stuff, and don’t pay attention to working the bait.

“Fish are stupid. “Let’s face it: They have a brain about this big (he made a circle with his fingers the size of a walnut). It’s very basic. They have to eat. The lures work. Look for the pieces of the puzzle.

“If all the pieces are there when they start feeding, you will catch them. You won’t catch them with this (he brandished a cell phone he whipped out of his pocket); catch your fish, not someone else’s.”

He went on to explain that he doesn’t think that the average person ever thinks about what his bait is doing.

“A person has to be so into his bait that he has to be his bait,” Rue said. “When you jig it, don’t pay attention to the rod. Instead, imagine what your bait is doing. If your rod moves 6 inches, the bait may move a foot.

“That’s not what a little bait fish does. It moves in short spurts.”

He said it’s critical to let the bait reach the bottom between bounces when it’s cold.

“ They won’t take it if (it doesn’t hit the bottom),” Rue said. “That’s an example of paying attention to your bait.”

I interrupted to ask why, if color wasn’t important, were all his soft plastics glow or chartreuse.

“That’s just what I have confidence in,” he said with a shrug.

During the course of the day, soft plastics were Rue’s bread-and-butter lures.

In areas were water grasses were too thick to fish a jighead effectively, however, Rue shifted to a Jenny’s Jigs Redfish Spinner Bait or a Johnson gold spoon to keep his lure above the grass.

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.