Well everyone, hope you have enjoyed parts 1 and 2? This is the follow tips from 51 to 87 and hope you can get a few good tips with these? I sure have taken a few good tips for my frogging this summer.
51. Hang it up
Last summer I was fishing my favorite bass lake and apparently, everyone else decided to also; the lake was heavy with anglers. Typically this lake has very good structure fishing and that's where all the anglers headed to first.
Not wanting to play follow the leader and also to give the bass a breather from the influx of anglers, I decided to fish other areas of the lake — grassbeds, points, and so on — but the fishing was sparse. I threw about everything I had in the tacklebox without success.
When the fishermen thinned out later in the day, I began to fish structure. I flipped jigs, tossed worms and bumped crankbaits but had no strikes, so I tied on a Berkley Power Frog, a lure I had done OK with in the past. I began to work the above-water structure.
I noticed the bass would sometimes come up and bump my frog but wouldn't take it. Just before I was going to change to another lure, I made a bad cast and my frog landed on a branch above the water. As I was shaking my frog off the branch, three bass rose to the surface and hovered, waiting for this frog to jump off the limb.
I retrieved my frog and went to the next treetop. I very carefully cast the frog onto a branch above the water and twitched it like the frog was ready to jump, then I would "jump" the frog into the water. On my third cast I connected with a nice bass that blasted the frog when it struck the water from its "jump."
I used this technique of "jumping" the frog from limbs and collected 13 nice bass that evening, the largest about 5 pounds. I did notice that I had to work the frog when it was on the branches above the water or it wouldn't draw the bass' attention. After allowing enough time for the frog to attract the bass, I would leap it into the water and that's when the strike came. I had two bass at one time attack my frog.
Randy Caldwell, Nettie, W.Va.
52. Try more rattles
As soon as I get the Snag Proof frog out of the blister package, I shove a glass worm rattle into the body of the frog. I realize there is a factory rattle but this second one adds just enough additional weight to cause the frog to sit lower in the water and create additional noise. Mr. Bucket Mouth can't take much of that before he explodes. Also, the extra weight gives me the confidence to put that frog into places most people would not think to even try.
Jack Garrett, Wawaka, Ind.
53. Wait until you feel the weight
When you see the bass eat your frog, it makes you feel like you have to set the hook. Do not set the hook until you feel the weight of the fish. If you do this you will not be as frustrated with yourself for missing a lot of frog bites.
Ryan Latinville, Plattsburgh, N.Y.
54. Trim the legs
Trim one side of the "legs" slightly shorter than the other to help the frog walk better.
Cedric Wong, Folsom, Calif.
55. Use a swivel for open water froggin'
Use a three-way swivel to increase your hookup ratio in open water. Place two of the three swivels through each of the two hooks on the frog, then on the third attach a No. 1 treble hook, which will dangle down behind the frog.
Cedric Wong, Folsom, Calif.
56. Pull a Jim
For years, I have had my father-in-law, Jim, show me the proper way to fish with a worm. He'd find a twig standing up in the middle of a lake and work a worm around it, and end up pulling out about four or five fish, each bigger than the last, in a matter of a few casts. I had begun calling it "pulling a Jim" on someone.
Recently, we were out fishing on Otter Lake, and it was a quiet day. Nothing much was biting, so he was throwing his go-to bait (a jointed Rapala in bright orange) while I started tossing a frog in the shallows and in moderate cover. We came to a small island with a scum-covered point, and I dropped the frog on the inland side of the scum, and slowly walked it out.
Next thing I know, I had a 10-inch bass on the line. We moved around the point of the island, and three casts later, I brought in a 12-inch bass. By now, the comments started to fly, loaded with sarcasm from the rear of the boat. Four casts later, in the same 8-foot-diameter scum patch, the next 14-inch bass was reeled in. As we moved off the patch, I cast to its outskirt once more ... and a nice 18-inch tournament fish came to the boat!
My dad dropped his pole to the bottom of the boat, and without looking up said, "Gimme one of whatever that is you're throwing!" And this is how I got to "pull a Jim" for the first time!
Mark Tobola, Thorp, Wis.
57. Hop in and swim
Cast any frog or mouse imitation onto the shoreline. Hop the lure into the water and swim it back. This allows you to cover a lot of water quickly from shallow to deep. Make sure your lure acts like a frog; swim a few inches before pausing. Experiment with tempo, pause time, and how much you move the lure. You can also use this technique in open water if you have exposed cover such as islands, rocks, stumps or trees. Don't ignore isolated cover! I once caught a large bass by hopping a frog imitation off a rowboat tied to a dock. If you get missed strikes or refusals, switch to a slower subsurface lure such as a Floating Rapala, jig or unweighted plastic worm.
Bryce Althoff, Farley, Iowa
58. Gators like frogs, too
My wife likes using her frog lures along the banks. We were fishing in the St. Johns River in Florida a few years back, back in one the coves off the river, when she saw a big roll in the water. Thinking it was a big lunker feasting, she tossed her frog at it. I had the camera ready in case the big one hit her lure when suddenly a small gator broke the surface of the water and began chasing her frog. While quickly reeling in her lure I took a great picture of the chase. I hope this story tells you, not only do bass love frogs, so do their reptilian friends!
Steve and Nancy Bateman, Deltona, Fla.
59. Make your frog stink
After a day of fishing frogs, spray fish scent inside the frog body and set it asideyou're your next fishing trip, grab the frogs and leave the scent at home; each cast will slowly release scent.
Rob Hamilton, Dayton, Va.
60. Make it rattle with glass
Add glass beads into the hollow body cavity of the frog for added attraction. This allows you to use it in less clear water, as well. Use three or more beads, experimenting with the number for sound and also depth caused by the added weight. Match the conditions and what the bass tell you.
Michael E. Ulrich, West Columbia, S.C.
61. Solution for short strikes
So many times bass short-strike a frog and miss it. I've come up with a solution to this problem. Take a three-way swivel and attach one end to each hook on the rear of your frog. Then take the remaining tie of the 3-way and attach with a split ring an unweighted weedless worm hook. I've landed many bass on that stinger hook that otherwise I'd have missed. This hook does not seem to ruin the action of the frog. I basically fish Snag Proof, so I don't know how it would affect other brands of frogs, but I don't think it would bother them.
Joel Prince, East Canton, Ohio
62. Flip the frog for pinpoint accuracy
The tributaries and creeks feeding the Ohio River watershed can get narrow and overhung with trees, the banks encrusted with vines, limbs, blowdowns and vegetation, which makes working a lure of any kind in that confined area difficult at best, particularly trying to cast the lure into the optimum locations.
The solution to the problem is to FLIP the lure into this tangled maze to get into the precise locations needed. I'm not just talking about worms, jigs, or other such baits; I'm also talking about crankbaits, spinnerbaits and, particularly here, frogs. I can't take credit completely for this idea because the idea formed after talking with Tom Nixon, the great fly rod specialist, about his use of a fly rod spinnerbait at a sport show here years ago. His point was that he could hit so many more targets with greater accuracy with a fly rod. At about this same time, flipping was just being introduced through Bassmaster, and the accuracy factor seemed to fit. However, bass being finicky creatures, ability to use different baits to adjust for conditions is critical.
Here's how it works: The frog is flipped to the bank over, under, around or through the cover so that it lands with its hooks on land and nose on water. It takes a season to acquire the skills necessary to hit the waterline every time. Let the bait sit until the rings subside. Pop the bait into the water and let it sit until the rings subside. Begin "walking the frog" back to the boat — and be prepared for some big splashes.
Many of the frogs are too light to succeed as flipping baits. To add weight, wrap three turns of solder (the size used for electronic repair, not plumbing) around each hook, securing it in place with Super Glue. This will cause the bait to "squat" — this is closer to a real frog, which floats butt down, face up. If necessary, add split shot to the body before sealing, or more wraps, whichever allows the bait to function the best.
You'll be amazed at how many targets you can hit with precision in rapid succession with this technique. The more targets you hit, the more fish see the bait, the more fish in the livewell — simple as that.
Gene Enders, Harrison, Ohio
63. Hop it for a reaction strike
Casting the frog onto the bank then "hopping" or retrieving the bait back into the water is one way to produce a good reaction strike. This creates an action like the frog is jumping into the water, which gives a prowling bass an easy meal. I have caught many lunker bass using this presentation, usually right when the frog hits the water or after a few cranks of the reel.
Tanner Quattlebaum, Saluda, S.C.
64. Patience pays off
When a fish jumps for the frog, it is your natural reflex to yank the fishing pole back to set the hook. Sometimes the fish will miss the lure and try to catch it on a second strike. If you try to set the hook as soon as you see the fish, it is likely to miss the lure and not get a second chance. So, pretend that the fish is not there. Wait until you feel the fish on your rod to set the hook.
Wistar Nelligan, Lynchburg, Va.
65. Simulating the chase
Remove the rear treble hook of a topwater lure (such as a torpedo bait) and attach a 12- to 18-inch leader. Tie the frog onto the end of the leader, and fish the prop bait as usual. This technique gives the appearance of a frog in pursuit of a baitfish or insect, making the frog even more appealing to the bass.
Chris McWater, Mannford, Okla.
66. Don't spook 'em
When bass are close to shore, I like to cast my frog or other weedless plastic bait directly onto the shore, well beyond the fish. This allows you to ease the bait back into the water and directly into the strike zone without spooking the fish. I've found this technique produces more strikes than dropping the bait right on the fish's nose. It's also easier to detect strikes this way. Sometimes bass will take a lure as soon as it splashes into the water making the strike hard to detect. With a subtle entry into the water from the shore, the strike is a lot more obvious. Be sure to keep a close eye on your line using this technique; repeated casts onto shore can cause more nicks than usual.
Andy Huth, Cincinnati, Ohio
67. Sometimes smaller is better
My best frog fishing tip is going against the norm. When others are throwing the larger frog models, I like to downsize my frog offering into a smaller, compact version. I do this by modifying the larger version, cutting the legs to about 1 inch long and thinning them out. I then insert rattles and use glue to plug the holes the rubber skirt comes out of. I am left with a smaller profile with lots of noise to accompany it, while still maintaining the weight of the larger versions.
Carmen Iafrate, Ontario, Canada
68. Mimic the real frogs
Working a topwater frog is a technique. When you are in lily pads, scum, shallow weeds, etc., there are different approaches to the presentation of the lure. The best advice I have is to take a minute and look for frogs around the area near the bank. See how they are acting (sound, movement, etc.), then present your bait in the same manner. You'll have a great time!
Paul C. Ward, Ashville, Ohio
69. Weigh it down
I have a 50-acre lily pad- and weed-lined lake near me that is perfect for frogging. The one problem I encounter is in the summer the lily pads get so thick that it is hard to get the frog through them to the water where the bass can bite it. I use a Scum Frog. My best colors are black on sunny days and white on cloudy days. One trick I do is to weight the Scum Frog down by putting cut-up pieces (about 1/2 inch each) of scented worms into the Scum Frog via the hole where the hooks come out. Usually two or three pieces will do the job. This really weighs the frog down, gives it a bigger profile and adds a little scent to the frog. It casts a lot easier and farther also. I do the same thing when using the Scum Frog Popper on matted milfoil-type weeds.
I also use Snag Proof's Perfect Frog at times. One thing I found is that sometime the bass will just bite short at the rubber skirted legs. The way I solved that problem is to trim the legs in half for more hookups.
Steve Gunderson, Lancaster, Ohio
70. Use a gimpy frog
On a rubber frog, I like to trim one of the legs, causing the frog to lose some of the symmetry of its movement. The effect is a frog that "limps" across the surface. Maybe the most fun you can have is to load a small plastic frog on a lightweight fly rod and put it back amongst the lily pads — the action is quick, and the fight is intense.
Paul Carron, Columbus, Ga.
71. Fill 'er up
One day my frog got filled with water and it sank. I discovered that sometimes fish just like the frog submerged, especially after the sun gets up higher in the sky or when fishing slightly submerged grass. Rather than change baits to other plastic frogs that sink, just intentionally fill your frog with water or put a small bullet weight in front of it. An erratic style of retrieve enables the frog to tick the top of the grass and provoke strikes. When you come to slop or emergent vegetation it's simple to squeeze the water out and work it on top again.
Ted Warren, Yantis, Texas
72. More shoreline action
When fishing down a bank with a frog, try throwing it onto the bank. Then hop it into the water and retrieve. One day I found that from the back of the boat this resulted in more strikes than my partner got just casting his frog to the grass away from the bank. I believe casting it onto the bank and hopping it out looks more natural to a bass scanning the shoreline for some action. I've seen bass hit the frog in less than 6 inches of water and flop in the shallow water trying to get it.
Ted Warren, Yantis, Texas
73. Be creative
You can fish a frog virtually anywhere. Of course you can fish the slop, but try fishing about 10 to 20 feet from the cover and you will be rewarded with a heart-thumping hit that you will remember. Also, my fishing buddy and I were fishing for fun and fishing open water with a frog when a boat came by and someone said "You can't catch fish out here with that lure." Well, we had a double hit — a 5-pounder and a 6 1/2-pounder. Those guys took off after they saw that. (I always wondered if they tried the same way.)
Victor E. Toscano, Billerica, Mass.
74. Slow pop
I was fishing pads using a topwater frog and every time I threw the frog, a bass followed it but never took it. I changed frogs and put on a Spro, and started popping it up and down slowly. The bass took it right away. Sometimes you have to slow down.
John Brodkorb, Orange City, Fla.
75. Scent appeal
I use a frog quite often. One day I noticed a bass come up to my frog and nudge it, then swim away. I thought maybe she smelled the plastic and didn't like it. I then took a cotton ball soaked with Baitmate classic scent and stuffed it inside the frog. I fished this way for another hour and caught three nice bass.
Al Smith, Quincy, Ill.
76. Let them run with it
My grandpa and I were fishing along the Ohio River and while he was catfishing, I was bass fishing, throwing a frog around riprap and along the bank. Bass kept hitting the frog but I kept missing them because I kept setting the hook too fast. My grandpa kept yelling at me, saying, "You have to let them run. You have to let the run." After being frustrated and resting, I started throwing the frog again, and right as I was going to bring it up out of the water to make another cast I noticed a bass was right underneath it. I let the frog sit, barely moving it, when all of a sudden the bass smashed my bait. I reared back as hard as I could and the frog came flying out of its mouth and smacked my grandpa right in his mouth! Luckily, it didn't hook him but I learned a good lesson (and had a good laugh): Let the fish run for a second before setting the hook!
Christian Smith, Vicksburg, Mich.
77. Hang-ups aren't always bad
I was fishing with my dad about 10 years ago when he got his frog lure hung up on a stump. He told me to turn the boat around because he was snagged on a stump. The lure was about 8 inches above the water. He was shaking the fishing rod, trying to free the lure from the stump, when suddenly a bass leaped from the water, grabbed the lure and fell to the lake. My dad set the hook and caught a nice 2-pound bass.
Ed Kohl, Waterford, Conn.
78. Flying frogs
Throw the frog across to the opposite bank. Slowly drag it toward the water. Give it a quick, short jerk and let it "hop" into the water. Sounds too simple, but I have caught a lot of bass when it is airborne, and then plops on the water. Watch out for the neighborhood cat lurking on the bank!
Richard Adams, Shoreacres, Texas
79. Water-logged frog
Squeeze the body of the frog while dipping it in the water, then stop squeezing so it fills with water. Adding this extra water weight makes the frog slowly sink down from the surface, attracting hungry bass.
Shawn Mullen, Barrington, R.I.
80. Snell something fishy
Getting short strikes on your topwater frogs, no mater what you try? Try snelling them together with steel wire typically used for pike/muskie fishing. About 6 to 8 inches works best. Heavy diameter superline works fine if you don't have wire. Secure them from the base of the double hook to the eyelet of the second frog. The outcome is amazing even if the bite isn't short!
Mike Burke, Quakertown, Pa.
81. Make it glow
One of my best frog fishing tips is for fishing it at night. Activate a glow stick, and paint the glow-in-the-dark liquid on the frog. You can also use another glow-in-the-dark liquid as long as it lights up. This gives bass a great target to hit on the surface under the moonlight.
Shawn Mullen, Barrington, R.I.
82. Swap hooks for better hooksets
Want to increase your hook-up ratios fishing frogs? You should always make sure the fish has it for a brief moment (I count to three quickly), then use a powerful sweeping overhead hook set, but sometimes this isn't enough to help you stick it to 'em right in the mouth. After many swings, misses, and strikeouts (and a few choice words), I decided to analyze the situation. I decided instead of using standard frog hooks with the screw-in head attached at the eye of the hook, I would use a standard wide gap worm hook. I secure it by pegging it in place with a toothpick and snipping the excess of flush with the frog. If you consider the dynamics behind the force behind the hook set, the advantage is obvious. The pegged hook will tear out the front of the nose and the hook will come out of the frog every time, whereas the screw-on standard hooks leave the point of the hook in the frog because the hook remains in the same place (the screw will not tear out). That extra half-inch of exposed hook can mean the difference between getting that hawg out of the thick stuff and just seeing a nice boil. The downside is you'll go through more frogs.
Matthew Coe, Ewing, Ill.
83. Take it from this kid
My name is Joe and I am 12 years old. When I fish with weedless frog lures, I cast the frogs onto the shoreline and retrieve it back toward the boat with short jerking motions. It looks more realistic as the fake frog jumps in the shallow water and continues to swim back toward us. This imitates the action of a real frog and produces a lot of bass attacks.
Joe Gawle, Lockport, Ill.
84. Stuff your frog to beat the wind
Casting soft hollow bodied frogs in calm or no wind is simple and accomplished without too much effort. Let the wind start blowing, and you will generally do well to find another lure to throw. Or you can break off small pieces of soft plastic worm and stuff the parts into the back of the frog, giving it some weight but not taking away the topwater properties of the frog. Bend the hooks back a little to help with the hook sets.
Claude Rentz, Orangeburg, S.C.
85. Target cover
The easiest way to catch very big bass is to cast your frog close to underwater terrain such as submerged trees or logs. If the hooks are inside or they are weedless you can cast in weed banks; keep doing this for 10 tries and you may catch some bass. If you're in a boat it's easier because you can just cast and bring it back, but if you're on a dock or on land try shooting parallel to the coast. Also, if you have lily pads in your lake you can leave the frog on the lily pad with the tail or skirt in the water and move it slightly; the bass will think the frog is about to die or injured.
Alejandro Gomez, Weston, Fla.
86. Chug and pause
The best tip I have for frog fishing is to be VERY patient on your first cast of the day. If you go out in the morning on still water, your first frog cast is the first sign of life for the bass to key in on. I'll cast a green Snag Proof frog on 20-pound braid into the lily pads. It hits the water and I let it sit for at least 20 seconds (long enough for the wake to go away). Then I chug it a couple of times and pause for 10 seconds. Usually a fish will hit it once you chug it and pause. Works like a charm.
Chris Mader, Pelham, N.H.
87. Fish the skinny
I throw the frog up on the shore/bank and slowly work the frog into the water; I usually get my strikes in the skinny of the water. Other times I will actually throw them on the logs up on the shore to make it look like they fell off the logs into the water.
Rick Ellinger, Rockville, Md.