Back in the late-1990s, it appeared for a while that the Zipper Worm was set to be the next big trend to move west to east. It was going to be the Senko or the beaver before those things even existed.

I remember reading about the Zipper in Bassmaster, specifically in regard to its use on an exotic body of water called the California Delta, where they frogged the cheese, culled out their rats and used “meters” to gauge the deepest spots. Then, when I finally saw a pack in a Virginia store, in the coveted “Witches Tea” color (the PG version of the original R-rated name), I couldn’t wait to hit the checkout counter with what looked like a pack of ringworms that had been run over by a road grader.

I caught plenty of fish off the Zippers and their doppelgangers in the ensuing years, but eventually they stopped being mentioned in the magazines and perhaps not coincidentally they remained on my garage pegboard rather than making it into the boat. The entire worm genre seems to have fallen into lesser favor, but while the 10” beasts are still popular on the ledge lakes and the smaller versions found a new home on the dropshot rig, the poor Zipper seems to have been forgotten.