Travis Bunting proudly displays crappie caught using his new bait while Charlie Bunting looks on with admiration for his son.

Travis Bunting proudly displays crappie caught using his new bait while Charlie Bunting looks on with admiration for his son.

Sitting in the sports bar at Rend Lake Resort waiting for other anglers to come in off the lake, Charlie Bunting began talking about his son’s new business venture. Travis and his father are partners in their professional crappie fishing endeavors.

They took the 2012 National Championship title on the Crappie Masters tournament trail as well as many local contests.

Today the reason for the gathering of anglers is a media event sponsored by BnM Fishing Poles and Road Runner lures. The purpose of outdoor writers being present is to learn about new products and gather story material. To that end each writer fishes with a fishing pro(s) for various periods of time during the next few days.
Once in the boat with Charlie and Travis the discussion immediately turns to the Muddy Water baits.

Travis explains that he dislikes having the tail of his bait fold back on the hook point. Sometimes it actually became like a weed guard that keeps the crappie from firmly grasping the hook. Worse yet, it sometimes causes the fish to spit it out before Travis has a chance to set the hook.

Following much experimentation Travis has developed a plastic body strong enough to take quite beating and yet remain soft enough and realistic enough for the fish to hang on to it and not spit it out. The body is about the size of small shad and presents a similar profile.

Travis believes that scent is also a factor in consistently catching crappie. He adds garlic to all his baits despite no shad ever smelling like it. According to Travis the garlic helps trigger strikes.

Recommending a worm nose jig in the 2/0 size Travis likes 5/16th ounce jigs for most applications. But when dock shooting, he will downsize to 1/16th ounce. He uses 10 to 12 pound test line with an 8-pound leader. He rigs a jig at the end of the leader and a drop line just above it with another jig at the end of it. Travis does not use any swivels. Instead he prefers to tie all lines together.

Travis uses Power Poles on his boat. This allows him to lock in on structure and hold on it even in windy conditions. He also has Drift Paddles on the Power Poles that can act like planner boards when required. Although he was initially skeptical of these rigs Travis has become a believer. They allow him to hold his hooks and baits steady.

Muddy Water baits are available in some 30 color combinations from Grizzly Jigs through their online catalog http://www.Grizzleyjig.com.

Muddy Waters 1


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