Bomber Long 'A'

Three BombersAlmost every major lure manufacturer seems to have had a seven inch minnowbait in their line-up at one time or another. They all catch pike, make no mistake, they all have their own little quirks that make them do something different which can make them a killer on the day.

What sets the Bomber 17A apart from the rest are its castability, its action and its density. Being made from a clear, dense plastic (except the chrome ones which are a little different) Bombers cast really well, and are not as buoyant as a lot of minnows. Many minnows are fairly cork-like in their buoyancy, which makes them good for popping on the top and running just under the surface. The Bomber not only dives a little more steeply when twitched hard from the surface, but it stays down longer too. This means it can be fished more slowly than most of its rivals. This alone is a good enough reason to select this bait. Then there is its action to consider. The Bomber seems to have a wider swing when twitched.

The twitched retrieve is the most useful to use with minnowbaits of all style. Twitching can vary from constant, rapid twitches to a straight cranked retrieve broken up by longer pulls with pauses to take up the slack these pulls create - and all points in between. The secret is to make the minnow 's progress through the water veer off from the straight and narrow path that a steady retrieve creates. The only exception to this rule is when using the jointed Bomber 17J.

The 17J works great on a straight crank, and on the troll. Even so, subtly varying its speed can provide a useful trigger. A useful retrieve with this model is to draw it through the water with sweeps of the rod tip, then quickly take up the slack before repeating the draw. It's a sort of long and slow twitch! Very effective though. Easy to cast and retrieve the 17J makes a great search lure.

Bomber minnows come into their own when pike are located in the top five feet of the water column, or are prepared to come up to that level. Fish them in clear pockets in weed, over weed tops or for suspended fish. They are a great lure to use where the pike have seen a lot of larger baits and in clear water conditions where larger baits might spook them. The Bomber's slim profile and plastic construction make it a great hooking bait too. Although the Long A can be fished effectively on jerkbait gear, using a lighter line will give you more running depth, and a lighter leader will increase the swing and turn you can get from the lure.

The Bomber minnow is a 'go anywhere' pike lure that you shouldn't be without - in as many colours as you can find!

Box of Bombers!

For details of Magnum Long "A" colour availability visit Pradco's website.

Other top twitching minnowbaits: Bagley Bang-O-7, Whopper Stopper/Heddon Magnum Hellcat (discontinued).

(This article first appeared on this website - July 26th 2001, latest update May 3rd 2002)