Just How Wild is Willy? G-Ratt's Topwater Walker
Design/Ergonomics: It's funny, there was a time I'd have thought this bait was quite large. At other times, it's difficult to comprehend that I think of a six inch, two ounce bait as average sized or even small. Then again, ask me to tie on a standard size Zara Spook (4.75" & 3/4oz) these days and I'd likely pass.
The Wild Willy really is a perfectly comfortable sized bait to fish for however long your topwater bite lasts on any given fishing trip. It is available eight standard, traditional colors, but I think my favorite feature on this bait are those rotating hook hangars. They really do make a difference once you're hooked up.
The Wild Willy by G-Ratt Baits retails for just $29.99
Price & Application: When Zander showed me his
arsenal of Wild Willy baits, I was a little surprised he had so many. They have the look of a boutique brand bait with a high price tag and while it's not uncommon for Zander to indulge, it is uncommon for him to go overboard on a new bait. That's usually my modus operandi. But then he shared with me the Wild Willy retails for just $29.99, and it all made sense. It's easy to solve that indecision on which color to try when a bait is in the realm of affordable. Just buy them all. It is, afterall, the TackleTour way.
I say that tongue and cheek but the reasonable price of these baits does indeed
make it easier to put a few in the arsenal to match what the fish in different
bodies of water are looking for.
Over the last few
seasons G-Ratt has transitioned from primarily offering custom baits to mass
produced ones that are not only more affordable but has made it possible to
greatly expand their portfolio of bait types and patterns. For example, while I
have been fishing the Wild Willy baits Zander has been focusing on the smaller
version of the company's signature Sneaky Pete, a smaller 5.75" version called
the Pistol Pete. New versions, and so many additional patterns, is made possible
with plastic based versions rather than handmade resin or wooden baits.
G-Ratt Baits Wild Willy
A nice looking bait in traditional colors that are well executed. Quality components.
Better suited for calm days, otherwise casts well and relatively easy to work
A great price for a bait of this size and potential.
Rotating hook hangars, reinforced hooks,
A not so big, big bait. Great size for those who want to throw something bigger for the potential payoff, but aren't quite up for throwing something even larger
A very good choice in topwater walking bait when conditions are on the calm side.
: 2 =
poor : 3
: 4 =
: 5 =
: 6 =
fair : 7
= good :
: 10 =
Pluses and Minuses:
| + Good size and weight
but it comes
in a wide
|+ Rotating hook hangars
|| - A little tougher to cast and work when the wind picks up
|+ Strong Hooks
Looking for a larger than normal topwater plug to throw? The
Wild Willy can draw some very big bites!
Conclusion: G-Ratts Bait's Wild Willy is a worthwhile, larger than normal, topwater plug in which to invest. Especially since the cost of investment won't necessarily break your tackle budget, and what you get for that investment is a bait made with some premium components. Rotating hook hangars are always a nice touch on larger baits and the extra strong, sharp hooks inspire confidence. Given the right conditions, the bait is easy to work, but things get a little more difficult once the wind picks up. This is a common malady for walking baits,
and put in the time and you will be able to tame the Wild Willy and make it an
effective weapon across a wide range of conditions. But if it's a calm day, and you're fishing over a shallow flat, this bait
will feel right at home and can draw some very wild topwater strikes!
Looking for a G-Ratt Baits Wild Willy?