February 14, 2014
Z-Man Fishing Product's MinnowZ has been a saltwater staple for a number of years. And its pearl, mud-minnow and glow-chartreuse hues have also played a role in the grub tactics that some temperate bass anglers employ. Recently some Midwest finesse anglers have affixed it on either a 1/16- or 3/32-ounce Gopher Tackle Mushroom Head Jig, and they use it to pursue largemouth, smallmouth, and spotted bass as they would a traditional bass grub or small swimbait by swimming it across patches of coontail and bushy pondweed or along wind-blown rocky points and shorelines.
This three-inch soft-plastic grub or swimbait is manufactured from a material called ElaZtech, which Z-Man describes as being exceptionally soft and buoyant. Moreover, it is extremely durable. In fact, it is so durable that some temperate bass anglers have tangled with 100 white bass with the same MinnowZ.
It is graced with a boot tail, which generates noticeable thumps and gyrations of its torso. Its back is endowed with a dorsal fin, which is also a hook slot, and if finesse anglers us a small hook on their jigs, this dorsal fin also become a minor weed guard.
In 2013, Z-Man added 10 new colors to their MinnowZ repertoire. Several are aimed at the saltwater market, but the Bluegill, Bloodworm, Mood Ring, Motor Oil, Purple/Chartreuse Tail, and Rootbeer/Chartreuse Tail hues look as if they will catch the eyes of some Midwest finesse anglers and their black bass quarries.
Some retailers sell a package of eight for $3.99.
Drew Reese's lineage as a Midwest finesse anglers reaches back to its inception, when it was created by the late Chuck Woods and Ray Fincke in Kansas City during the 1950s and 1960s. Nowadays Reese resides in Rantoul, Kansas, and spends his summers in Ontario chasing smallmouth bass. During the summer of 2013, he discovered that the MinnowZ rigged on either a 1/15- or 1/10-ounce homemade mushroom-style jig is more than a grub or small swimbait that emulates a minnow or a smelt and is retrieved by swimming it across smallmouth bass lairs. Reese found that hopping and bouncing it along the bottom seems to replicate the antics of a crayfish, and by executing such a retrieve, he tangled with an impressive array of smallmouth bass in 2013. To read more about Reese's smallmouth bass tactics, please examine the Midwest finesse column at this link: http://www.in-fisherman.com/2014/02/01/midwest-finesse-z-man-saga-canada/