Anyone paying attention to ice fishing jigs and spoons in recent
years knows that Rudolph’s nose isn’t the only thing that glows. A
big seller for tackle makers has been glow, which can mean whitish
“glow” paint, glow in other colors, and glow tape (similar to prism
tape). Most lines of winter tackle include glow color options. And
variations of “glow” appear in many lure names.
In a somewhat different class are Northland’s new Fire-Light
These little 1-inch tubular light sticks attach to hooks, jigs,
and jigging spoons by means of a flexible silicone ring. They
resemble the Kailume light sticks used to convert ordinary bobbers
into lighted bobbers.
According to Northland, the Fire-Light sticks glow for up to
Well, chemical light sticks and battery-powered lighted lures
aside, I wondered how long jigs, spoons, and lures that sport glow
paint and glow tape really glow. I rummaged through my jigs, winter
spoons, spinner blades, beads, and lure tapes, and laid out an
assortment of glow tackle. I “charged” them equally with healthy
doses of daylight and flashlight beam, then shut the door to my
laundry room. There, in the darkness, my glow products were free to
glow as brightly and as long as they could. I checked on them at
Do some lures with glow paint glow longer than others? Does glow
tape glow longer than glow paint? Do any glow products glow for an
hour or more? And do several products with “neon” glow
characteristics new for this season outglow lures I purchased prior
to 2000? First, my findings for pre-2000 lure choices (the same as
most standard glow lures still on the market). After five minutes
all these products exhibited some glow, but significantly less than
they showed at the start.
After 10 minutes there was almost no detectible glow in most of
my standard glow products, with no glow after 15 minutes. I saw a
few subtle minute-to-minute differences in glow intensity. But in
my view the lures, beads, and other items all stopped glowing after
Charge time? I chose a glow-painted jig and a strip of glow tape
for five-minute, up-close exposures to bright light. The other
standard glow tackle received my usual shorter charge. The results
were similar. Even the super-charged glow products had stopped
glowing after 10 minutes or so.
And now comes neon! In my second test, I light-charged three
lures with “neon” glow paint new for this season: a chartreuse
Jig-A-Whopper Rocker spoon, a red JR’s jigging spoon, and a
Northland chartreuse/lime Super-Glo Bug-Eye Ghost Grub. The JR’s
red (looks pink but glows red) showed the brightest, most fiery
glow I’ve ever seen. It didn’t last much longer than my standard
glows, but it easily re-charged with minimal exposure to light.
Northland’s Ghost Grub, though small, was visible at 40 minutes.
The Jig-A-Whopper Rocker spoon was still glowing at an hour and a
half. My neon test was no serious match-up, since the colors
weren’t the same. A JR’s neon blue might glow for hours. Other
Northland and Jig-A-Whopper colors might glow brighter (or longer
or shorter) than the ones I tested.
The point is that this winter, anglers into “glow” will find
interesting new “neon” options out there!
What did my unscientific tests prove? Since they glow