Deciding On A Creeper
There are a few things to look for when buying a creeper. Certainly, the finish and the paint job on the lure is important…not that color makes a big impression on the Musky, but it is an indicator as to the ‘pride of manufacture’.
Take a look at the wing mechanism. The wing itself should be free of metal burrs and have enough tensile strength to resist deformation. The wing should also be cupped. This cupping is necessary to create the plop sound as the creeper is retrieved. The cotter pin used in this wing mechanism is an effective method that allows the wings free motion. The cotter pin also allows for easy replacement of the wing if it is damaged, unlike those wings which are soldered in place. Note also the stop tab. This tab is used to adjust the degree of angle between the wing and the lure body…I will discuss this a little later in the article.
The body hook mechanics differ from creeper to creeper. This creeper has a metal clip that is attached to the through wire of the creeper. The split ring is attached to the clip and a modified hook hanger is used to stabilize the mechanism. You may see some that use a swivel rather than a clip or you may see some that use only a screw eye and split ring combination…and then there are those that use only a hook hanger. All are effective…just make sure that there is always a split ring and, in the case of a ‘hook hanger only’, ask how long the screws are that secure the hook hanger to the creeper body...½ inch is a minimum length...I prefer ¾ inch.
The rear hook configuration will vary somewhat. Many creepers, like this one, will not use a split ring. This works OK, however, if you should have to cut the rear treble to free a fish or the hook will no longer accept being sharpened, you will have to cut the hook off and use a split ring to attach a new hook to the rear eye of the through wire.
When To Use The Creeper.
The creeper has developed a reputation for being a productive evening, morning and night time lure and that is certainly true. The creeper has also been considered a calm to ripple water lure and that is also true. However, the creeper is also an excellent rough water lure that can be very effective on heavy overcast days. Remember that when the wind is up, Musky are generally moving. They are looking for an easy meal and a creeper plopping its way up and down the swells of choppy water presents the picture of a small animal in distress. I would recommend that you give your creeper a chance to surf the chop…