Henry Gilbey
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Henry Gilbey blog

This cabin fever tends to give my wallet a bit of a hammering because I still can’t resist the shiny stuff

Depending on the weather and water conditions we tend to have a decent chance at bass on lures until well into January, but if we get long spells of really bad weather and/or we get into February and the prospect of at least a couple of months until the confidence is really bubbling again, well that for me is when the cabin fever starts to rage - and one of the ways in which it manifests itself in me is the uncontrollable urge to go looking for new lures.

But do I need any new lures? Go on, have a free guess on me! I am also going to assume that many of you reading this have a good number of bass fishing lures which are most likely covering as good as all the different situations you might come across and locations you might fish - but where’s the fun in admitting that? Be as cynical as you like and snort into your coffee or whatever, but lure fishing for bass especially is my addiction, and when the cabin fever starts to properly bite I go a looking. I enjoy it, and I sure as hell ain’t going to apologise for it either.

I like having a look around and then buying a few things that float my boat. I am not looking for the latest and greatest guaranteed bass catcher because we all know it’s so much about where and when, but lures fascinate me, and I do enjoy looking for variations on what I already have, plus if I can find a type of lure that I don’t have and it looks worth trying then I really like that as well. Like any of you here I am tend to default to types of lures that have worked the best for me in the past, but on the other hand I am always up for a bit of a gamble to see if some different stuff might work.

I’m going to detail a number of different lures that have somehow found their way to me recently, and most links here will be of the affiliate variety with a disclaimer at the bottom as per usual. I enjoy yapping about lures, cabin fever is raging, and I am trusting you to understand that none of the lures below have been proven by me (yet) to be out and out bass slayers. I hope you take this post in the spirit in which it is intended - I will show you mine and I’d sure appreciate it if you’d show me yours by letting me know if I need to check some other stuff out. Bloody cabin fever. The grizzled old me (who is 45 today, surely this can’t be right?) thinks I am above it these days, but as ever I have succumbed……...


IMA Kosuke 110F (110mm, 17g) - Isn’t this a thing of beauty? When I saw that horrible person who owns Bass Lures posting this exact colour Kosuke on Facebook the other day, I resisted for all of about five minutes before heading to the Bass Lures website. I did actually own an IMA Kosuke 110F a year or so ago, but I snagged it up and lost it not long after hooking and dropping a bass on it. I am guessing the name Kosuke is a riff on the Komomo and Sasuke, and it really gets out there, looks like it dives a little shallower than the Sasuke but not as shallow as the Komomo SF-125, and it’s really grippy with a very intense action. I really fancied a bright chartreuse lure and I blame the persuasive power of Facebook for this one. I like bright lures in bright conditions, but I am also wondering if this colour might do me some good in a bit of coloured water.


APIA Ailed'Ore 115F (115mm, 18g) - I actually got this last year and also nailed a few bass on it as well. Because of where I do a lot of my bass fishing, I lean towards lures that don’t dive too deep, and I have a serious thing for the hard lures that swim really shallow - this APIA Ailed'Ore 115F absolutely frigging flies and with that small bib and substantial profile it’s got a subtle kind of action that I know works because it’s caught me fish.


IMA Yoichi 99 Light (99mm, 23g, and there’s a heavier 28g version which I haven’t seen) - I haven’t spent nearly enough bass related fishing time with what I think are called lipless minnows or sinking pencils or whatever, but when I saw a video of this stunning little IMA Yoichi 99 Light doing it’s thing in the water I had to get one. Why? Because I’ve got issues of course, but I do have a bit of a thing for smaller bass lures, and this 23g IMA Yoichi 99 Light really gets out there and swims nice and subtly as per the video below. I’ve got a few ideas where this lure might work and I’m going to enjoy finding out if my hunches are proved right.


Shimano Exsence Responder 109F (109mm, 15g) - Did you know that Shimano Japan have a big range of bass fishing lures? I have been looking at them online for a fair while now, but this is actually the first Shimano bass lure I have ever owned - and if the rest are anything like this Shimano Exsence Responder 109F then I need to track a bunch more down. Holy cow this is every single thing that I want from a very shallow diving hard lure. I love the size and chunky profile, it’s outrageous how well it casts, and with little effort as well, the colours and details on the one I have here are stunning, you know the sort of stunning wiggle action it’s going to have from that shape of bib and then the video below, and I so need to track some more down. I cannot wait to get this Shimano Exsence Responder 109F in front of some bass, because I am so looking forward to seeing if it smashes them as hard as I think it will.


Blue Blue Bloowin! 140S (140mm, 23g) - My go to lure in bouncier conditions has been the IMA Hound 125F Glide for a few years now because I trust it so much to get out there and grip in and catch me some fish, but I enjoy looking around to see if I can find something along the same lines. I like the DUO Tide Minnows and the MegaBass X140SW etc., and this Blue Blue Bloowin! 140S is an interesting addition to this group of lures. It casts very well, it seems to be incredibly grippy with that big bib, and the lure feels like it’s doing a lot in the water.


Shimano Exsence COO 100F (100mm 10g) - I think this type of hard lure might be called a floating pencil in some parts of the world, but I stand very much to be corrected on this (floating lipless minnow perhaps?). What I am sure about is that I haven’t owned a hard lure like this before, but I absolutely love what this little thing does. I don’t know how Shimano Japan can get a little 100mm long lure that weighs only 10g to cast so well, but it’s pretty incredible. Get it out there and it floats like most surface lures, but now start the retrieve and this Shimano Exsence COO 100F slips just under the surface and comes back with the most delightfully subtle action that kind of makes me think of it as a hard soft plastic. Kind of like a slim profile, nice and subtle very shallow diving hard lure, but with no bib. Did I mention that I need to get my hands on some more Shimano hard lures?

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