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Father’s Day Surf Plugs For Late-Night Linesiders

Father’s Day Surf Plugs For Late-Night Linesiders

As June rolls into July, many Long Island surfcasting sharpies with bass on the brain shift their emphasis to working night tides. With water temperatures still on the rise and plenty of boat traffic during the days, the graveyard shift can offer linesiders reprise from a hectic environment and daytime temperature highs, increasing the likelihood of aggressive feeding activity.

While a variety of lure types can work on late-night sorties including soft plastics and  bucktails, there’s just something special about throwing large plugs once the sun goes down. With their big profile, distinctive silhouette and ability to push plenty of water, plugs call to big fish after dark – sometimes even on shallow flats that see few significant lunker catches during daylight hours this time of year.

Whether you are just getting started in late-night plugging or looking to pick up a Father’s Day or birthday gift for your favorite beach rat, here’s a selection of five super plugs that should grace the tubes of every serious surf bag.

Lemire’s Plugworks (Price: $35-$55): 

Turning out a variety of handcrafted wooden fishing plugs with a sharp, durable epoxy finish for both saltwater and freshwater game fish, Lemire’s Plugworks makes some really nice stuff and has been steadily gaining in popularity. “We are coming to that time of year when larger metal lipped lures are a smart choice to throw, so Lemire’s line-up is definitely worth checking out right now,” says White Water staffer, Jeff Lomonaco.

In particular, Jeff notes the 7” Prowler Surfster in True Pogie (bunker) pattern as being very productive. “It’s good for tempting surf bass in relatively calm water both day and night,” he explains. “I especially like to throw it around boulder fields when searching for bigger fish. Just real it nice and slow across the surface with an occasional bump of the rod tip now and then.”

Yo-Zuri Hydro LC (Long Cast) Minnow (From: $9.99 )

This is a great selection for general surfcasting applications. Exceptionally versatile, you can work this plug through back bay waters, inlets and along the ocean surf. Just cast out and vary the speed of your retrieves from a crawl to simply slow until you zero-in on what the fish prefer on any given night.

Available in 6” and 6-3/4” sizes, with the former most popular amongst the surfcasting crowd, this minnow style bait has been designed to cast long distances and performs well even under harsh conditions. Throw it from the beach or your boat to hunt down not only stripers but just about any inshore predator species found in coastal waters.

An all-new weight transfer system helps the Hydro Minnow LC cast like a bullet even into a stiff headwind, tilting the odds in your favor as you reach your quarry from a stealthy distance. This series also features the finest terminal tackle, incorporating 3X strength treble hooks and heavy-duty split rings that won’t let you down.

Super Strike Zig-Zag Darter (Price: $23.99)

We simply have to mention the 6”, 2-3/8-oz., Super Strike Zig-Zag Darter because it’s a big plug designed to work in current. Watch it slide side-to-side as it digs in during a retrieve and you just know it has big bass potential. Featuring a thru-wired design and VMC hooks, these darters take a beating and keep on chugging. In addition to bass, traveling surfcasters find them ideal for big redfish, tarpon, and snook, too.

“This is a great lure!” says Lomonaco. “It comes with a single hook on the rear and a treble on the belly. Just retrieve it slowly with an occasional heavy rod twitch from time to time and the plug will do the rest.”

North Bar Tackle Bottle Darters (Price: $20.99): Pretty much anyone familiar with the Long Island surf fishing scene, and plug fishing in particular, has heard of Larry Welcome and his North Bar Tackle Bottle Darter. As you’ve probably guessed already, this amazingly productive plug is a super-cool cross-over between a bottle plug and a darter. It’s especially productive this time of year because it can be fished in a wide variety of situations.

Checking in at 7.25” and 2.5-ozs., or 6”, 1-5/8 ozs., North Bar Bottle Darters cast well and excel at working in current. Simply take up line to keep in contact with the plug as it sweeps through your favorite rip. On flat-calm nights, swim it slowly on the surface in quiet waters to create an unbroken wake with a wiggle bass can’t resist. Retrieve a “burple” (black and purple) pattern slowly across a back bay stretch. Always double-check that your drag is properly set when throwing this plug because a big bass may be only a few cranks of the reel handle away.

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  • Bryce Poyer