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Rapala Countdown

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I believe this is the only Rapala I've never used. Do you guys use this bait? Is it a good jerkbait or more for a crankbait type of retrieve. Is this thing a "must have" like the Shad Rap or Original Floater? Tight wobble? Line diameter sensitive? Please tell me what you know...THANKS.

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That is one of my top winter baits. I figured out how productive that bait can be a few years ago. I was fishing in clear water about 40 degrees and I was using it around points. I would count it down and slow reel it for about 5 ft then count it back down a foot then reel it some more and count it back down. When you reel it the lure tends to rise some because of the angle that your reeling the bait so it helps keep the bait down in the zone. The bait also flutters on the fall like a struggling shad. The thing about a countdown lure that is great is that with a regular lure you cast it out and reel it down to a depth. With a countdown lure you just cast the bait and count it down to a depth and most of your cast the lure will be in the depth that you need it. The bait has the same action as the original floater I was using mainly the shad style but the minnow style is just as effective. No, it isn't line diameter sensitive exactly because your not fighting the line to get depth like a regular crankbait. It is like throwing a spinnerbait. You can use it like a crankbait or jerkbait but I would use it like a crankbait in cold water and like a fast moving jerkbait in hot water.

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It 's a great bait where you know fish are at a certain depth where other baits either don 't reach or don 't stay long enough at the depth you want.

Cast, count by seconds to the desired bed and jerk - pause - let it sink - jerk- pause reeling in the slack line to maintain the bait at that depth ( it 's like worm fishing but without touching the bottom ). Like Chris mentioned, the bait flutters like a dying minnow when it sinks.

It 's not a bait I fish with a lot but a couple of them in your T-box is not a big investment and sometimes saves your day having them.

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I fished these a lot in the 70s and 80s.  When I first started concentraing mainly on bass fishing this lure, the original floating rapala, and texas rigged worms were my go to baits.  I still keep a few available and fish them on occasion.  They are great in the winter as suggested by Chris.  They have a tight wobble like the Rapala floaters.  I've fished them like jerkbaits, used a method similar to Chris's, and I've let them drop all the way to the bottom and fished them similar to a crankbait, though, with the lip on this bait, you don't want to drag bottom or hit cover.  I've caught good solid fish on these.  

As an additional option, I read somewhere awhile back that the original floater has a slightly better action than the countdown, and that if you add some suspendots to it you can fish it just like the countdown, but with a little better action.  I haven't tried this because I always had success with the regular countdowns.  

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The Countdown tops my list of underrated lures. It'll catch anything that swims, bass included, naturally, yet it's only rarely talked about, either on forums or magazines.

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Shhh, keep it that way.....

I like fishing these a lot too.  They work great for all sorts of situations.  I almost jig em near the bottom, like a jerk bait I guess.  Like was said above, they catch anything that swims.

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Thanks for the replies. I'm pleasantly surprised by the high praise for this model Rapala, and from some very respectable members also. It's like Marty said, I just never hear of anyone talking about it and never read one single thing about it, so I assumed it was probably not all that good. Now I can't wait to fish one! I've got all kinds of ideas on where I might try this bait. One more question before I run out and buy a couple...Which size tempts the cold winter bass the best? Largemouth and Smallmouth in particular. I think it's probably between the CD07(2-3/4") or the CD09 (3-1/2") for mid to late winter. I'm kinda looking to see if a comparison between these two models is similar to a comparison between the pointer 78 and the pointer 100, if you're familiar with those two. That 3" pointer will usually spank that 4" one but the 4" catches a better quality of fish on average and on some days it's the only one they will hit. I figure warmer water would call for the CD11 (4-3/8") but I'm just guessing, as I'm sure many other factors determine the size of lure we should use. Heck, I may be way off on my guessing period! Help me out guys, please. I'm fired up over some of the membership using this bait as a primary winter tool. I see lots of possibilities for a countdown crankbait/jerkbait in each season! Why have I never considered these possibilities before? I need all the help I can get to catch as many bass as I can through the winter. Thanks Guys.

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The bait I use is like a shad rap with a funky bill it is 3 1/8" long. The lure is like a live shad print. I did post something about this lure and when to fish it on another post about seasonal fishing either late fall/ winter tactics. I think the post is about a year or two old. The only time I really use that bait is in the winter and in clear lakes. It is a great lure for suspending fish and you can also use it like a jigging spoon I have caught fish that way also.

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so I assumed it was probably not all that good.

Stay away from the Longcast Minnow, the lip is extremely fragile and it doesn 't swim well, haven 't caught a thing with it.

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Way back when, I fished the Rapala Countdown.

I used it chiefly for suspended fish whose depth was revealed by the depth sounder.

Though I would count the lure down to their depth, I experienced very modest success.

Granted, suspended fish are notoriously difficult to entice, and maybe that's why

the countdown and me went our separate ways.

                  The countdown is made of balsawood, but it is a weighted lure

and does not have the action of the original floating rapala. For the best of both worlds,

I would slow troll a floating rapala behind a swivel and egg sinker (walleye killer) ;)

Roger

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I'd use the 2 3/4" in cold water. Actually, that size is good all year for both species, but I'd start with the smaller one in cold water.

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