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Written By: Cal Kellogg, March 12, 2012
Sure it’s the dead of winter. Can we go out and catch bass? Yes, but let’s face if most of us had our way it would be spring or summer, the bass would be shallow, fat and full of fight and we’d be able to pop them with topwater baits.
As I set here next to the wood burning stove hammering away at my keyboard, it’s warm weather, big bass and surface explosions that are on my mind. This being the case let’s reflect on some of Bobby Barrack’s tips for working a Snag Proof frog.
For folks unfamiliar with his name Bobby is an icon in the California Delta. He’s won a fleet of bass boats, a bucket full of Angler of the Year titles and nearly $100,000 in FLW competition. Clearly when Bobby talks bass fishing, his words carry weight!
Bobby makes no bones about it, when it comes to summertime fishing the Snag Proof frog, or more specifically the Snag Proof frog he help to develop, Bobby’s Perfect Frog is his hands down favorite bait.
For frogging, Bobby advises anglers to reach for a stout rod measuring between 6’ 6” and 8’ long. Top the rod with a level wind baitcaster and fill the reel with braid testing 30 pounds or better. Knot one of his Perfect Frogs in the color of your choice on the end of the line and you’re ready for battle.
A lot of anglers think of frogs as baits you use when working matted weeds and they do work great in that setting, but there are times when they can be just as effective or even more effective when worked in open water.
For open water fishing, Bobby asserts that it is very important to use braid in the 30 to 50 pound class. “In open water you want to walk the frog and finer diameter line makes that easier to do. Braids heavier than 50 pound just won’t work very well when working in open water,” tipped Barrack.
When working the mats line ranging from 65 to 80 pound test works well, since the emphasis is on pure power and not on walking the bait.
According to Bobby, thinning and feathering the legs gives the frog a bird or dragon fly silhouette when the frog is at rest. To thin the legs, clip the skirt were it leaves the rubber band inside the frog. To feather, hold the frog upright, cut straight up the outside of the skirt.
One of the biggest challenges when fishing a frog comes in setting the hook once you get a strike. For maximum success you’ve got to keep your cool (yeah right!) and evaluate the intensity of the strike, before you set the hook. If the strike was a subtle slurp, like a trout sucking in a bug, allow the fish to load the rod a bit and then swing. If the water explodes and it looks like someone dropped a bowling ball into the water rear back immediately and crank that big girl out of the salad!
Just think, it’s going to be 6 months until we can break out the frogs. For now we’ve got to be content with day dreaming…
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