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Saturday, 24 March 2018

Megabass Vatalion - a new big player in the Murray Cod Swimbait Scene

I have had the pleasure of using the Megabass Vatalion for about 6 months or so now (since September 2017) and have given it a fair bit of use in a variety of conditions in high country rivers, the Murray River, Lake Eildon, Copeton Dam and Lake Mulwala targeting Murray cod.  My initial reaction when I first saw it on the Viva Fishing stand at AFTA was wow, very impressive and sexy looking lure! Since becoming extremely familiar with it it has become one of my favorite lures to use.  With a limited supply of Vatalion becoming available in Australia for our market, I thought it was a great time for a brief review and introduction to the Aussie native fishing scene.

So what is it - the Megabass Vatalion is a single jointed floating swimbait designed for largemouth bass crafted by master lure designer, Yuki Ito.  At 4.5 inches (115mm) long and 39grams, its profile is said to perfectly match that of a small bluegill or panfish, or in the case of Australia, a small redfin, carp or host of other small regional baitfish.

Yes it looks good, like all Megabass lures do.  Downward looking 3D eyes, highly realistic 3D gill plates, custom holographic paint that reflect multiple colors at different angles it's certainly attractive and ticks the box of attracting the fisherman.

The actual construction of the lure is interesting, the jointed design suggests it will swim well, the deep body and tow point positioning suggests it will vibe, it poses the obvious question just what will or can it do?  The Vatalion is not meant to be worked with rod action. Instead the crank of the reel handle is what drives the Vatalion’s action. Tuned for all retrieve speeds, it is designed to stop on a dime and slide out to the left or right when the retrieve is suddenly paused. With a slow stop start retrieve the Vatalion exhibits sharp, quick turns (this is where I believe it excels for cod in particular). A constant faster retrieve will deliver a hard-hitting, high-pitched rolling / vibe action similar. Designed to swim up to a meter below the surface (at a faster retrieve), the Vatalion also slowly floats up when paused.

The stock hooks and rings quite are ok and certainly sharp but I strongly recommend upgrading trebles as is the case for so many lures intended for bass when used for Murray cod - we have found that size #2 Shout! Curve Point 21's do the trick nicely and an increase to 1/0 still works well but begins to impact buoyancy more towards a neutral float while going up in hook gauge to 1/0 Shout Curve Point 31's (a more heavy duty hook) may result in a slow sink with minor loss in responsive action.  This could be a great option in some scenarios, like where you want your Vatalion to dredge a little.

Made from high impact plastic the lure is quite tough, however you should be careful to store Vatalion out of direct sunlight and avoid hitting hard object like rocks, I have one Vatalion that I have retired after one too many rock impacts and it started to take on water and sink, but this was after a lot of abuse.

The Megabass vatalion is not a massive lure, it can comfortably be thrown on most 'traditional' cod tackle and doesn't necessarily requite a specialist swimbait outfit.  I cannot wait for the chance to throw vatalion at barra.

Check the Megabass swim video -  
Shop for Vatalion here

Nice Eildon fish in horrible conditions
Down the hatch - big Copeton cod for Adam Townsend


This WAS  a good one, can't win them all

Lovely clear water cod for Jason Taylor

Murray River Vatalion eater











Please note - the author is a Megabass field tester.