Baits, Lures & Flies photo

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In an attempt to drum up excitement over the new season of “Man Vs. Wild,” the Discovery Channel just threw a few teaser clips up on Youtube. In the one below, host Bear Grylls, who is stuck on a Pacific Island, eats the eyeballs out of a triggerfish. According to old Bear, the eyes are full of fluid that can thwart dehydration. That may be true, but I still don’t think I could ever eat a fish eye. But what I have thought about is what lures I’d want to have on me if I ever got stranded in the woods or on an island.

Here’s the scenario: You’re stranded by a river, lake or on the ocean. You’ll be stuck for at least a month. You get to carry one lure and one lure only. We’ll pretend that you managed to get stranded with a rod and reel to fish said lure.

The white bucktail jig seems like an obvious answer for saltwater. In fact, they are included in some survival kits. No doubt, a white buck will catch almost any fish that swims. But if the lure gets hit enough, especially by fish with teeth, it may not be long before you end up with nothing but a jighead. That’s why my island pick would be a Hopkins NO=EQL metal. You can cast them a mile, teeth won’t hurt them, and with a little care, they’ll stay shiny for a long time.

As for being stuck on a stream, give me silver Phoebe. My gut wants to say Panther Martin, but if the shaft breaks or bends too badly, game over. On the lake I’d take a medium-size Rebel Minnow in silver. The Phoebe makes sense here too, but you have to work them quickly. The Rebel runs effectively at many speeds and everything from largemouth to bluegills will eat it.

Your turn. – JC