Alabama Rig - Next Big Thing or Pushing the Limits?

As I write this blog, Paul Elias is on the verge of blowing away the field on something called the Alabama Rig and after day 2, the angler in 2nd place, Robert Behrle, is also throwing the same rig.  I had never seen anything like it in bass fishing before watching a live on the water video today from FLW.  I expect much more on the Reel Time Reports from FLW soon.  It was hard to see at a distance the type of swimbaits Elias had on his A-Rig.

So I did a little research to find out more about this rig.  Turns out, there is a website for it, http://thealabamarig.com



From what I gather, its almost like the donkey rig (double fluke rig) on steroids.  Similar to an umbrella rig used in saltwater, its painted minnow head with 5 wires protruding out the back with snaps to attach lures, allowing you to fish 5 baits at a time.  It seems the most popular scenario is to fish 5 grubs or swimbaits at a time to mimic a small school of baitfish moving through the water.



The big kicker is that it seems to get quality fish and the potential to catch 2-3 fish at time more frequently then one would with any other lure setup.

There already have been a few mumblings and grumbling about whether this rig should be legal in tournaments.  In some states, like Minnesota, this would not be allowed due to state regulations.  Not sure on all states, but it appears to be legal in Alabama.  Seems as though, if its legal for that state, and everyone has access, then fair is fair!

Not sure if this will be hotter then the chatterbait and the Basstrix hollowbelly put together, but I am sure it will make quite the splash and these will be a little hard to find in a short time!  Either way, there will always be a supply of Alabama Rigs on ebay.  What if Kevin VanDam starts throwing 5 Red Eye Shads at a time?  How long before BassPro & Cabela's have these on the shelf?  Sworming Hornet Lures makes a version called the Sworm.

Here is a good video breaking down some rigging techniques for the Alabama Rig.




 
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  • 10/22/2011 8:01 AM Bo Crawford wrote:
    Never heard of it. Better get yours before they are banned in tournaments!

    Great Post!
    Reply to this
    1. 10/23/2011 4:24 PM Rich Lindgren wrote:
      Think I'll pass, not much use for it where I fish, not legal in most places up here and we don't get that many shad based fishing, thanks!

      Reply to this
  • 10/23/2011 5:10 PM Fishing wrote:
    Thats a great article! You bring up some interesting points... I'll have to try arranging a few fishing rigs like this.
    Reply to this
  • 10/23/2011 5:10 PM Elvis wrote:
    nice rig! i can see some of the pro-am circuit players already gearing up for this.

    it's going to be interesting to see these rigs when you visit cabela's or bass pro shops. can you imagine the size of the box and the plastic they have to put on this?
    Reply to this
    1. 10/23/2011 8:43 PM Rich Lindgren wrote:
      Guess I didn't think they would include plastics, those would be separate, I think!

      Reply to this
  • 10/23/2011 10:56 PM Barnacles wrote:
    Ha, That's has to be the wackiest fishing contraption I have ever seen!
    Reply to this
  • 10/25/2011 8:29 PM XpressDawg wrote:
    So, based upon the Minnesota regulations...the Donkey Rig, AKA double fluke rig is illegal as well? Anyone who can make Musky bucktails can make an Alabama Rig. To use in MN, just have 4 "teasers" and 1 "hooked" bait on the longer wire.
    Reply to this
    1. 10/26/2011 7:25 AM Rich Lindgren wrote:
      Xpress Dawg, you are spot on and I agree

      Reply to this
  • 10/25/2011 9:17 PM David Lundgren wrote:
    The Alabama rig looks to be something great,but if it is not legal to use in all the states it can make things dificult for most pros to use. When it catches on all over and is legal in all the states i think it will do just fine. I am looking forward to giving it a try myself because the thought of catching more than one fish at a time sounds fun and challenging. I also enjoy learning new ways to fish so i created a website with a few items to help out anyone interested in fishing as a pro or just as a hobby. so check out catchfin.com there is more to come to this site soon!
    Reply to this
  • 11/1/2011 4:48 PM Dustin wrote:
    Have never seen anything like such. Like the principle and hope its as effective as it looks.
    Reply to this
  • 11/5/2011 10:14 AM Bassrealm wrote:
    This is simple replacation of what has been used for saltwater striped bass fishing for years. It is illeagal in many states in freshwater but may be effective in certain waters. I do hope most would only use this as a catch and release method.
    Reply to this
    1. 11/6/2011 9:40 PM Rich Lindgren wrote:
      Well said!

      Reply to this
  • 11/7/2011 8:03 AM Ross wrote:
    i have never seen anything like this before... dont think you get them over here in south africa but im going to make my own one to try immediately!
    Reply to this
  • 1/21/2012 11:01 PM Steve Vonbrandt wrote:
    The Bass College
    FINALLY!! SOMEBODY WHO IS IN CHARGE WITH SOME COMMON SENSE!! I AM BURNING MY BASS LIFE MEMBER CARD IN THE MORNING AND NEVER GOING BACK!!

    FLW
    20.Jan.2012 by Kathy Fennel
    The Alabama Rig has taken the bass-fishing world by storm. Every discussion about its use seems to generate an emotional response unlike anything I’ve seen in my more than 30 years in the sport.

    For every passionate plea that it be banned from tournaments, there is an equally passionate plea that it be allowed. No matter which side of the debate you are on, one thing is undeniable: The Alabama Rig has generated a level of excitement and interest in bass fishing unlike anything that has come before.

    Since their inception, tournaments have been the spawning ground for lure, equipment and technique innovations that help recreational anglers catch more and bigger fish. It’s the reason fans tune in to our television shows, visit our websites, read our magazines and attend our events. There are millions of bass anglers out there with an insatiable appetite for cutting-edge information that will make them better at their sport. To argue that the Alabama Rig and other castable umbrella rigs be banned from tournaments is to believe that we’ve finally reached the end of innovation; that the great equalizer has been found; that the only thing separating novice anglers from the world’s top professionals is a weighted head with five wire leaders and swimbaits. There is nothing more to learn.

    We believe professional anglers deserve more credit than that. We believe their skill and intuition will not be undercut by a baitfish-imitating technique that helps less experienced anglers catch fish when otherwise they might not. Will it force some pros to elevate their game and adapt? Of course it will. Just like GPS, side-imaging sonar, sight-fishing, shallow-water anchors and countless lure, line and rod innovations have done over the years. Buzzbaits and ChatterBaits were once considered radical, as were flipping and sight-fishing. But they are all simply tools of the trade now. The same will hold true for Alabama Rigs. It’s not the end of fishing as we know it.

    Anglers are still held to a daily five-fish limit. Tournaments are still catch-and-release. Our conservation ethic has not changed. We’ve taken the additional step of contacting wildlife officials in each state hosting an event in every FLW circuit to urge them to study the effects of castable umbrella rigs on live release rates. If conservation issues are discovered, we will reevaluate our rules accordingly. For now, we are leaving that in the capable hands of the experts within each state, and castable umbrella rigs will be permitted in our 2012 tournaments.

    Sincerely,

    Kathy Fennel

    President, Operations Division

    FLW Outdoors
    Reply to this
    1. 1/22/2012 1:37 PM Rich Lindgren wrote:
      Over react much?

      Reply to this
      1. 1/22/2012 8:36 PM Steve Vonbrandt wrote:
        No Did you lose or will you lose a couple thousand dollars on this becasue of them?? I did and will. That is part of it the other part is I am right. and the FLW agrees wit me.
        Reply to this
        1. 1/23/2012 1:00 PM Rich Lindgren wrote:
          Not sure how a 100 anglers not using them in 10 tournaments could cost you that much, BASS & most all other tourney orgs allow it for the other 10's of thousands of anglers....

          Reply to this
          1. 1/23/2012 11:06 PM Steve Vonbrandt wrote:
            Well I am not going to explain it to you here but it costs us way more than that OK. Do you really think I would care if it didnt. It did and it is impossible to judge how much it will cost me in the next year enough said if you dont understand. I am not about to try to explain it to you.
            Reply to this
  • 1/26/2012 7:47 PM Steve Vonbrandt wrote:
    Your current regulations regarding the Alabama Rig or Umbrella rig as you like to call it, are outdated and not inline with current practices of Catch and Release that all tournaments are based on.


    These regulations may have been efficient in the past before 95% of of all anglers were catch and release only,and they may still be the right thing to do in the Bay and Oceans, but to limit them in a tournament situation does nothing more than further distress the economy by limiting the sales of small business owners and the state itself, by not having the increased excitement of using this rig in the tournaments throughout the state,thus increasing revenue in a variety of ways.


    The is no evidence at this time to indicate that this is in any way detramental to the fishery at all, and needs to be looked at more by you especially now in a distressed economy and with Catch and Release tournaments. The FLW and many of the elite anglers feel the same way and you are not doing a thing for the resources except further limiting the ability to increase revenue that could be used to benefit the rivers in particular and other lakes and ponds in the state.Many new techniques were considered to be something that was going to destroy the fisheries at the time, and many tried to ban them, such as sonar, Sight fishing, Power Poles, Chatterbaits, and many others that have now been accepted as standard practices in almost every state and tournament,and have been shown to have no negative effect whatsoever! This is another one of those things that needs to be considered and re-evaluated now in 2012.


    Here are some of the current positions of people that do this for a living and have made strides in conservation and ethics in our sport.I am urging you to reconsider these outdated regulations concerning these rigs.
    Reply to this
  • 1/31/2012 12:20 PM GB wrote:
    Thanks a lot for the video, Im now looking at your channel and downloading all your video so I will always have them when I need. Thanks again =)
    Reply to this
  • 4/21/2012 9:01 AM tom ebsen wrote:
    Hi Rich long time no see. 123 Castable umbella rigs(web site) Check out! these are legal in minnesota-- has one trailing lure , the rest are blanks. Hopefully they hit the one with the hook on it.
    Reply to this

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