The latest swimbaits, topwaters, soft-plastics, spinners, jerkbaits, and jigs for Canadian anglers
For even more great new gear, also see the year’s best new rods and reels, accessories, fly tackle and gear for women.
Best lure components
HEAD SHOT SERIES
These ultra-realistic components are a DIY-lure maker’s dream come true. Predators are known to target the head of their prey, and Head Shots (above right) make the perfect bull’s-eye. They move freely around the shaft of a spinner, but when retrieved, they swivel upright and wobble from side to side. The 11 hand-detailed shapes include pike, sunfish, walleye, chub and redhorse sucker. You can also purchase finished bucktails (above left).
The Ugly Pike Bait Co., (905) 716-0396; www.uglypikebaits.com
Best finesse lure
At 2½-inches in length, with a slender, articulated 2¼-inch tail, the Mouse is tiny—and that’s the point. Spro’s hefty, award-winning BBZ-1 Rat lures were made for heavy baitcasting equipment and big predators, but the 5/16-ounce Mouse is a finesse spinning presentation for bass, crappies and trout. Retrieved at a moderate speed, it has a walk-the-dog action, but when slowed down, it shines as a sub-surface crankbait.
Spro Corp., (770) 919-1722; www.spro.com
Best bass hook
When bass pros sponsored by competing companies are using VMC’s NK Neko, you know it’s a good hook. And here’s the really interesting part: While the hook is excellent for finesse Neko rigs, most pros are raving about their hooking success when using it for drop-shotting. Featuring a long shank, wide gap, offset point and very cool, patent-pending, resin-closed eye, the NK Neko is available in sizes 6, 4, 2, 1, 1/0 and 2/0.