Storm’s new Arashi Cover Pop – Big Mouth, Big Action

Popper’s are one genre of baits that don’t really get the kudos that they deserve.

These seemingly simple, chugging, blooping, walking, spitting, rattling baitfish imitators have caught fish for decades.

The trick for any new bait in this category is how to differentiate itself from the long list available to anglers in a way that will get you to try them.

The new Storm Arashi Cover Pop took on this challenge with specific performance characteristics in mind for their final production design.

Design, Design

One of those was to create a bait that was heavier than your standard small popper so that it could be cast long distances as well as being used with casting equipment for more precise placement in and around cover.

The Cover Pop comes in at 3-1/8 inches, 1/2 oz meaning that this plug can be launched with ease on pretty much any all around rig including using it with braid if you are so inclined. Not our first choice but if that’s how you like to fish topwater plugs, there’s nothing inherent in this bait that will prevent you from doing just that.

Another design element that was focused on was having the ability to walk the dog, without moving the bait forward very far. The Arashi folks accomplished this by having a narrow, slightly upturned tail with a large relatively shallow cupped mouth. When worked properly, you can move the Cover Pop more side to side than forward because it will turn quickly with sharp, short pops of the rod tip.

It is also very apparent that Storm was intent on providing a solid platform for large, stout hooks. The VMC black nickel hooks are big, beefy, sharp trebles with plenty of bite to facilitate a better than average hook up ratio and keep the fish pinned.

Putting the Cover Pop Through its Paces

Like most good poppers, the Arashi can be manipulated by the angler to make a variety of sounds from subtle to down right irritating based on how aggressive you are with your retrieve.

This bait can make loud bloops while spraying a considerable amount of water or barely perceptible little blips when finessed. To top that off there is plenty of room between the extremes to really dial in what the fish are wanting.

The Cover Pop delivers much better than average in terms of staying in tight spaces while tempting fish with a walk the dog action. Due to the fact that the weighting is in the rear of the bait with none up front, after the initial bloop, the nose will rise above the water as it moves to the side for a longer glide. This in essence, keeps it from having to move forward as it is worked.

We found that most of our strikes have come using a slow to moderate retrieve capitalizing on the side to side movement of the Cover Pop with intermittent pauses. Generally, we cast to our target, allowed it to sit for several seconds, gave it one or two sharp pops of the rod tip to make it splash, paused, then gave it several little jerks to get it walking and paused again.

Using this retrieve, the bites seemed to come after no more than five repetitions of the same cycle. Some would happen on the pause which seemed to be the less aggressive fish because when the Cover Pop is at rest, it sits tail down at about a sixty degree angle. This allows those shy followers a chance to take just the rear hook without showing themselves completely.

Other fish would simply blast it while it was in motion. For that matter, we had one fish in particular that was so anxious to get to it that it completely came out of the water, jumping over the bait before it came back for seconds and crushed it.

And …

The colors available for the Arashi Cover Pop range from some very light to some that are moderately dark with most of the finishes incorporating a graduated color scheme that is enhanced by an iridescent, glossy top coat that gives these plugs a natural shimmer to them as they are worked.

They also use a feathered rear treble that complements the paint scheme as opposed to matching it. Within the feathers are strands of mylar that add a little to the flash and supplement the natural flaring action on the tail when that bait is static.

You can find the Cover Pop in most retail and/or e-tail locations for just under $8. For this price, you can pick up a few in your choice of colors without breaking the bank or having to sweat losing one.

The Storm Arashi Cover Pop is a solid, well executed bait that will draw strikes, is simple to learn to use, is versatile enough to be used in more than a few situations as well as delivering on those specific design elements that the company sought to address.

Storm Arashi Cover Pop
An effective, larger popper

See ya’ on the water …

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