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ICAST 2019 Update Coverage

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Lure Review

The Castaic Catch 22 Swimbait offers guaranteed durability, and it catches fish too (continued)

Casting: There are four sizes of the Catch 22 available (4, 6, 8, 12 inch models), and they come in either floating or slow sinking versions. Each bait casts differently and the four inch bait is really too light to be cast on the rods you would traditionally employ for tossing swimbaits. For the 4” swimbait we cast the petite lure with a Daiwa Steez outfit. Anything bigger than the 4” is best cast with a rod designed specifically for swimbaits.


The Catch 22 really gets moving in the water and the entire lure kicks back and forth more aggressively than most swimbaits


Retrieving: I don’t think the average angler realizes how much finessing most swimbaits require to be fished with maximum effectiveness. While the average soft body swimbait can be fished with a straightforward constant retrieve anglers will increase their strike percentage by adjusting their retrieves to either position the lure longer in the strike zone or better draw the attention of fish in an effort to trigger strikes. Soft bodied swimbaits are more than just vibrating tails, and as simple as they appear they can be among the most rewarding and frustrating lures to fish, all at the same time.


Unlike many other soft swimbaits the Catch 22 can fully collapse on impact reducing the ability of fish to use the bait's own body to dislodge the hook


The team at Nature Vision wanted to create a swimbait that reduces that learning curve. The deep joint design may cause the bait to look less realistic than a Huddleston for example, but what they do is create an extremely lively side to side tail kicking action that extends from the head all the way through the tail. Because the segments are so thin the lure is able to get moving at just about any retrieve speed. Whether you crank the Catch 22 back slowly or burn it back to the boat the lure slinks back with a lively S-Pattern.


Fully bent over the two indented areas show the InnerArmor threads


During our field tests I found that this lure was extremely easy to fish, and in ultra clear water could see the lure dance tantalizingly whether it was retrieved, jerked, or twitched. I was able to draw strikes from fish with extended pauses, and at times could see fish lethargically follow the lure back to the boat only to break into a full on charge the minute the lure was accelerated after pauses. Because it takes so little retrieve to impart action on the Catch-22 it is possible to go from a near dead top to what looks like a fleeing trout instantly.


We over torque the Catch 22 to test the bait's durability... it survived the torture and lived to swim on


Depending on the rate of fall the Catch-22 hovers relatively evenly in place or slowly sinks when deadsticked. I didn’t catch any fish on extended deadsticking, as all of my strikes came either during straight retrieves or shortly after brief pauses.


The larger baits are best fished with a true swimbait rod


When it comes time to set the hook unlike other swimbaits the Catch 22 can collapse into a tight ball so that when a fish mashes the lure it will actually compress inside the fish’s mouth. Since the hook is tied directly onto the main line if a fish actually shakes the main body of the bait it will remain hooked to the triple pointed “no throw” hook. During our tests the bait would either be balled inside the fish’s mouth or in some cases come completely dislodged when we lipped the fish, but the fish remained pinned. We did get some short strikes on the 8 and 12 inch bait but hookups were made easier with the cleverly designed hook system.


The tiny 4" model bears the same finish and design... just smaller



Next Section: Just how durable is the Catch 22?









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