The Bettencourt Baits Dying Trout.  Fusing a deadstick, stall, and slow grind approach.
The Bettencourt Baits Dying Trout. Fusing a deadstick, stall, and slow grind approach.

I have a thing with stalling and deadsticking. It’s a universal truth of catching fish on bigbaits.  It’s a part of my approach to picking baits, and choosing my style of retrieve.  Context.   The Bettencourt Baits Dying Trout is approximately 7″ long and no more than 2 ounces.  It’s not exactly a mega-bait, but what it lacks in bigbait appeal, it makes up for in a killer swim, stall, and death dance.  It’s also likely something the fish haven’t seen yet.  I can see setting up on a prime rocky point, or offshore spot with a sweet spot, and really setting up for one or two prime casts.   I would swim this thing right into mother hen’s den, and then kill it…..and let it sit on the surface for as long as you can stand it.  Then twitch it once or twice hard and violent and let it sit again.  You could really draw a killer strike on this bait, if you knew where some big ones lived and need a fresh approach.

Here’s a little video, from one my favorite places to film on earth, in Cotter, Arkansas:



Not to say, you couldn’t just ‘go fishing’ and catch fish with the Dying Trout.  It’s a great bait, and my hat is off to Nathan Bettencourt for making baits uniquely his own.   His Dying Bluegill was a fun bait to test.  They aren’t swimbaits you go power fishing and cover tons of water with.  You need to take your time to fish the Dying Trout or the Dying Bluegill right.   So, if you found yourself in 3 feet of clear water on lake Okeechobee, and magnums up and around beds, you should fish the Dying Bluegill.  If you find yourself off a prime main lake point with a sweet spot that gets a little shade in the afternoon, I’d fish it there.   Another tool to try out. It’s going to force you to slow down, which is a good thing, most times.

Want to Buy a Nathan Bettencourt Dying Trout?  Click HERE

You can get a good grind and dig out of the bait, you just have to be very mindful of your retrieve, and in total control/contact.
You can get a good grind and dig out of the bait, you just have to be very mindful of your retrieve, and in total control/contact.  It fishes like a square billed crankbait on the straight wind.


Horizontal Half Moon Rising
Horizontal Half Moon Rising


They Dying Trout Crankbait!
They Dying Trout Crankbait!


The Bettencourt Baits Dying Bluegill. Start, stop, kill, or swim. Interesting spin on flat sided presentations, and cool little swimbait.


Nathan Bettencourt has been quietly providing swimbait fishermen a unique offering of baits.  Each bait he makes has incredible realism and attention to detail. He makes hardbaits and they all tend to have fur and hackle and have reproductions of the real fish inlaid as paint jobs.   Nate sent me his Dying Bluegill and I have spent some time swimming it and messing with the action, and I have to say I like what I see.  If I was fishing an area, where I knew a big one lives, I’d swim this thru, and then kill it.  It has an incredibly slow Rate of Ascent, like ROA 3.   You can get a feel for the bait, how it swims, how it kills and how it looks in the water here:



The Dying Bluegill swimbait just released today.  You can purchase the bait online at for $29.95, that is $10 off the future retail price of $39.95.  This bait is small, relative to the swimbait and bigbait discussion.  It’s about 4.5″ long and weighs about 1 ounce.  The fur material looks really good in the water, real subtle movement, and I have to say I really like the out of the box flat side down presentation of the bait.  Bluegill swimbaits are something I’m making a conscious effort to explore and test, and serving them flat side down is really interesting.

Flat side down. One hanging treble from the side of the bait, and the bill, make this a unique swimmer and application. The Flat Side Down fits the ‘killed’ nature of this bait, hence the name, Dying Bluegill.


The bait will dive 3-5 feet, and once you kill it, it SLOWLY floats back to the surface, but I mean slowly ascends. You can twitch it and give it some English in the killed phase to make it look dying, but not dead yet.


Because the bait has a bill, it cranks down and swims along like a big flat billed flat sided crankbait. Too much torque will cause the bait to blow out, but just right, you get a nice fluid swim.


Nate has posted his own video alongside the links to purchase the BettenCourt Baits Dying Bluegill.  View the page for the Dying Bluegill HERE.  Bluegill eaters will be an ongoing discussion, just like the rest of the conversations about bass eating bigger fish or bigger creatures.  Thanking Nathan Bettencourt for engaging us, and looking forward to sharing some of this other creations soon.  Nathan calls Clinton, Missouri home, which makes us neighbors in the grand scheme of swimbait geographies.

Bettencourt Baits Dying Bluegill Photo Gallery:

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