- The Mop Lure
Here's a HOOKLESS
trolling lure you can make yourself in just a few minutes that'll take the sails and
marlins without injury to the fish at all.Just slide a retired two-ounce jig head over
some 80 pound test mono leader material, then tie the bitter end of the mono around the
middle of a 16-inch-long nylon carpet yarn. That's it.
- From time to time reports have filtered
through big-game fishing circles about a hookless lure that can really do a number
on any billfish that takes a whack at it. In the rulebook of the IGFA the use of any
lure that "ensnares a fish" is definitely taboo, but since I was completely
ignorant of such a restriction at the time, I was positively delighted to join two
Guatemalan friends off the Pacific coastline of their handsome country and watch a lure
they call The Mop take giant sailfish after sailfish without doing the fish the slightest
- The Mop is nothing more than several
thousand strands of pure white nylon carpet yarn as manufactured by DuPont. Cut in chunks
eight inches long with a two-ounce lead-head from a discarded feather jig attached
somewhat ingeniously, the lure looks like a big, juicy squid when trolled rapidly.
- Guatemala City radio station
owner Paco Maza B. and his buddy Roberto Sanchez, a local dentist, fish it difficult to
understand why other members of their fishing club outlaw the lure during annual sailfish
- The dozen sails I observed being taken,
outside of becoming completely enraged by the presence of the lure clinging to the tip of
their bill, suffered no ill effects (except to their dignity maybe) when released.
- A lure is sacrificed when a sail is
released (a razor sharp linoleum knife is used to slice quickly through the strands of
nylon), but they are cheap and simple to prepare. We made a dozen in two hours.
- The Mop is usually trolled about 150
feet behind the boat and allowed to skip occasionally. The reel is set at striking drag
rather than almost free spool as when trolling natural baits. About all it takes is one
inquisitive poke of an interested sail's bill and the Mop snares the bill firmly in its
grasp and never lets go!
- In my years of pursuing billfish, this
was the first time I ever saw sails consistently taken without a lot of bloodshed and
possible internal damage to the fish.
- And, so far as The Mop possibly
hindering the fighting ability of a sail-no way! Those sails went bananas, and
each battle, to put it simply, was far more satisfying than any I can remember. As a
catch-and-release angler for many years, it is considered opinion, IGFA rules to the
contrary, that taking billfish on this type of lure is far more humane than any other
method I have heard or witnessed.
Reprinted from Clifford L. Mekel's
article in the Saltwater Sportsman magazine dated December 1989.
- Mang Eddie, my fishing guide as well as
other local fishermen from Bolinao use a different variation of this lure.
- He doesn't use a lead head but just binds the strands
together with ordinary string. He uses a monofilament line and passes it through the
middle of the binding.
- He also uses a combination of two colored strands
consisting of white and pink and mixes it with about 10 to 15 strands of metallic gold
- I have personally tested this lure and I have caught my
first and second sailfish on it.