There was a time, in the not so distant past, when I was fishing I would immediately get discouraged at the sight of grass mats, lily pads, and heavy vegetation while in pursuit of a big bass. I had the attitude that an area of water covered in vegetation was something that could not be fished. I didn’t want to get hung up, lose my lure or worse, lose a keeper as I reeled it in.
When encountering this type of cover in the water, my thinking would revert back to deer hunting scenarios in which deer often bed down in thick areas with a lot of brush. I would often think to myself, “I know the big ones are in there, I wish there was a way to get in that area to hunt”. It’s the same thick areas only on water, and the big bass are in there, and there is a way to get in that area to fish.
My dilemma with grass mats etc. quickly faded when I discovered fishing with topwater frogs. I found out that this type of lure allows fishing in the thickest of covers due to a unique hollow body design. And, the concealed hooks prevent hang ups. That dark world of unfishable water covered in vegetation disappeared for me. In fact, the first time I threw out a frog lure was on top of a large patch of lily pads. I was amazed at how the lure worked its way across the top, never getting tangled.
Tip: Be sure to catch the two videos below.
The popularity of fishing with frogs has “exploded” over the years, and the topwater frog baits are not only used by everyday fisherman, they have been used to catch some giant fish that helped win a few of the biggest fishing tournaments in the country.
If you’ve never fished a topwater frog and you’re thinking it’s time you started, you may have questions as to how to fish them, when to fish them and what tackle or gear to fish with them. Below are my tips to get the answers to some of the most common asked questions about topwater frogs. I encourage you to start indulging in some of the most exciting, action packed fishing one could ever experience.
BOOYAH Pad Crasher and Pad Crasher Jr. Frog
Due to the rise in frog fishing popularity, several different types of frog baits are showing up on the market. The folks at Booyah Bait Co. have one of the best frog lines available, this line consist of several different models. “I’ve always had frog lures in my tackle box, but now-a-days I strictly use Booyah frogs because they have every kind of frog lure that a fisherman would need” says Elite Series Angler Jason Christie “For example, the Pad Crasher is a perfect soft body frog with sharp hooks, the Pad Crasher doesn’t cost much, and the quality is there to catch big fish that can win tournaments” says Christie.
The BOOYAH Pad Crasher and Pad Crasher Jr Frogs are topwater hollow-body frogs that sport a bass boat-style belly which catches water for the easiest ”frog-walking” action in open water. The flow-thru design drains the lure with every twitch, preventing it from taking on water, catching weeds, and sinking. A double hook and interior weighting system assure positive hookups.
The BOOYAH Poppin’ Pad Crasher frog bait was created for those times and conditions that require additional surface disturbance. That’s when the unique action of the Poppin’ Pad Crasher truly shine. It’s terrific for fishing the slop, similar to the Pad Crasher, but with a cupped mouth, it doubles as a popper/chugger in open water.
BOOYAH Poppin’ Pad Crasher Frog Bait
The Booyah™ Toadrunner frog bait is an unorthodox soft frog that is built to stir things up with its lifelike molded body, short fiber legs that never stop thrashing, and clear jointed tail section that rotates 360° and sends out a wild plopping sound that calls bass in from a distance. Stabilizing side rails provide perfect balance as the Toadrunner moves across the surface, and a molded-in wire allows you to tweak the tail angle for different sound and swim as needed. Its weedless design includes a Trokar® double hook for positive sets.
Booyah Toadrunner Frog Bait
Bass Pro Shops Hyper Braid fishing line
The whole purpose of frog lures is to provide a realistic food source that is designed to fish heavy mat, pads and thick vegetation in water. With that being said, the best time to fish with a topwater frog lure is when fishing in these types of thick areas where a normal lure is virtually impossible to fish with.
As for the time of day that it is best to fish a frog bait, there is an old saying that goes “most living creatures get hungry in the mornings and evenings”. This statement speaks for itself, both morning and evening are excellent times to find hungry fish, however another great time to fish a frog is when it is hot throughout the day and the sun is shining. This is due to the fact that fish like to find a cool shady spot in the water when the sun is bearing down. Look for heavy vegetation or a spot where there is a bunch of lily pads on the top of the water that creates a perfect shady place for fish to stay cool.
Team Lews Pro Ti Baitcast Reel
The most common gear for fishing frogs is a medium to heavy rod, a fast action baitcaster style reel with a high gear ratio and heavy braided line. A heavy rod that is 7’ or so is ideal for fishing frogs. The longer 7 foot rod allows for keeping the fish head up and out of the water when reeling it in. Using a shorter rod could force a fisherman to reel a bass in while fighting underneath weeds, and pads, which could cause the loss of the fish. A braided line like Bass Pro Shops Hyper Braid fishing line in a 50lb test allows for the ability to pull a bass through the cover without any hesitations or breaks. The reel needs to be a high gear ratio reel such as the Team Lews Pro Ti Baitcast Reel which has a ratio of 7.5:1. This setup will allow you to hold heavy braided fishing line and reel the frog back in quickly once it is through the cover then quickly cast out again.
Reasons to Fish a Frog Bait and How
First and foremost, fishing with a frog bait prevents hang ups in heavy cover, but that’s not only reason to fish with a frog. Fishing with a frog also creates a lot of commotion on top of the water that brings bass out of that same heavy cover.
When fishing a cupped mouth style lure, such as the Booyah Poppin’ Frog, a fisherman will be able to experience a ‘walk the dog’ style motion. This is the technique of going side to side by reeling fairly fast. This fishing technique is best used in open water that has thicker cover underneath. The side to side motion plus the cupped mouth pushing water creates a lot of excitement that bass will explode on.
When fishing pads or heavy mat, fisherman can reel fast across the top and once the lure gets to the edge of cover they can slow the motion down, giving it just enough time for a bass to react. If pads are kind of spread out, try fishing slow then speed up, this method creates a realistic look of a frog hopping from one lilly pad to other.
Tip: Movement of the lure needs to be created by moving the tip of the fishing rod in different motions, this will create the most life like motions of the frog.
Tip: When a bass comes from the cover to explode the frog, a fisherman’s first instinct is to jerk hard to sit the hook. However, the design of most frog lures has the hooks facing forward, against the body of the frog, this is what prevents it from hanging in the vegitation. Unfortunately, it is harder to set the fishing hook on this style of lure. When a fish strikes, let it take it and then set the hook. This tactic will prevent yanking the frog back into the boat or toward you each time the hook is set.
I can promise you that when a bass hits your frog lure for the first time, you’ll will be hooked for life on this exciting fishing technique that provides more opportunities to put big fish in the boat, all while providing the most excitement that a fisherman can have while on the water.