Monday, May 12, 2008
Frogging for Bass?
Frog lures are gaining popularity after some big successes on the bass-tournament circuit. But amateur anglers need to learn to fish them right.
BUILT TO CATCH
A frog is the lure to fish in heavy cover. It's particularly good when the surface of the water is matted with overgrowth. Get A Grip On Frog-Lure Fishing!Specialized tactics could improve your bass-fishing by leaps and bounds.
A frog lure's double-hook rig gives bass anglers an edge once the fish takes the bait.Frog lures are gaining popularity after some big successes on the bass-tournament circuit. But amateur anglers need to learn to fish them right.I've caught a number of bass on frog imitations.
BUILT TO CATCH
A frog is the lure to fish in heavy cover. It's particularly good when the surface of the water is matted with overgrowth.Most frog lures are virtually weedless. The points of a large double hook curve up on each side of the frog's soft-plastic body. The frog has a small weight at the bottom near the back of the lure to keep it upright so that the hooks are up off the cover.
Its body extends slightly above the points of the hooks, and the lure slides over and through cover, keeping the hooks from catching on anything.
Its soft-plastic body is hollow and is easily compressed. When a bass bites down to capture it, the body collapses and the hooks are exposed to make a deep, solid hookset.Once these large double hooks are embedded in the fish's jaw, they don't come out.
WHERE TO FISH FROGS
Shallow lakes or slow-flowing rivers are the best places. Also, lakes, farm ponds, river deltas all offer good opportunities to fish a frog.Pitch it into the open spot in lily pads or hydrilla and get ready.
You only have one chance to make a good cast. That means don't miss the open spot and minimize your splash. If you miss, the bass will be alerted. Frogs don't fly away and then come back, and they'll know that yours isn't natural.Big fish are smart and will avoid an unnatural bait or lure.
You probably will not find these shallow-water predator fish on an area of a lake with deep rock canyons that drop off quickly to deep water. Fish here aren't likely to take a surface lure. Likewise, fast-flowing rivers don't provide the meandering water for bass to hang out in and don't have the downed trees and vegetation found in backwaters that attract shallow bass.
WHEN TO THROW A FROG
There is a misconception that frog-fishing is good only in the hot summer months. The very best times to fish this bait are July and August afternoons all the way to sunset. But it can be good from the beginning of March to the end of September.
BASS YOU'LL WANT TO TARGET
Frogs are perfect for largemouth bass. These shallow-swimming fish are often found in water that is only 2 to 4 feet deep, and they know exactly what is happening on the surface.
Larger bass can engulf a decent-sized frog, and they have learned that their easiest meal often comes from the surface. When you tie on a frog, you're fishing for the largest bass you have ever caught! Smallmouth and spotted bass will also take a frog lure.
When you cast frog imitations to shore, you attract smallmouth bass. Spotted bass go deeper, but surface lures of all types attract them when the water is warm and they are near the surface.
Walking The Frog
"When your frog gets to the edge of the cover, you want the frog to move mostly sideways back and forth, this is done by twitching your rod tip back and forth. For those of you that have used
a "zarra spook, it is a similiar retrieve that makes that walking the dog motion referred here as walking the frog.
When you are fishing heavy cover the frog is on the top of the mat, but the fish knows it is there and may try to bust through the moss.Sometimes a bass will leave little "hills" in the cover where it tried to charge through the canopy. When the frog gets to thin cover, get ready. That bass is going to explode onto the frog.
When water temperature is cool, fish the frog slowly. When it warms, speed up your retrieve.Everyone seems to have a slightly different way to fish a frog.
Frogs' natural color is green or dark brown. They may have various colors on their underside, but brighter-color plastic frogs seem to work better than natural colors. White or yellow are also good colors.
Some frogs have spots on their backs, but the fish never sees them. The color on the bottom is what's important.I sometimes put black dots on the light colored frog bellies with a magic marker.It proves to be the ticket sometimes when bass are picky.
Most soft-bait manufacturers make frog imitations. The dominant ones in the West are the ones with the double hook around the body. The normal weight of these lures is about a half ounce, but a large one may weigh 1 ounce. The smallest ones weigh 3/8 of an ounce.
Learn how to fish a frog lure, and your catch of large bass can take off. Fish in the obvious places like heavy cover, but also cast it into open water and along docks. You will find these lures to be very versatile. So that about covers it, until next time , enjoy the "Great Outdoors. " Keep your hooks wet!