Untapped Bronzeye Frog And Popper Options
By: Scott M. Petersen
If you paid close attention to the Elite tournament that was on the Mississippi River out of La Crosse you got a good snapshot of many of the uses of using a Spro Bronzeye Frog or Popper. A few of them came from the Frog Master himself Spro Pro Staff member Dean Rojas. On Day 3 and 4 Dean can be seen throwing a Spro Bronzeye Frog around the tops of exposed wing dams. This tactic helped Dean take a 8th place finish but it also sent a message that you do not need slop conditions to fish a frog in. There are many other areas that you can get strikes and land big bass when fishing this type of bait. Let's take a look at some prime locations that should get your attention next time you hit the water with a frog tied onto the end of your line.
Overhangs and Lay downs
In your day of fishing, depending on the water that you are fishing you will come across some lay downs and overhang trees that many times hold bass and sometimes even the biggest bass in the waters that you are fishing. How do you approach these waters? For many they just cast up to the edge and continue on going. I have a different approach I now pick up my froggin' rods and fire a few casts into these areas. If I am dealing with an overhang tree I will do my best to fire a few casts up into the holes that I can get a bait into and work the bait out. I cannot tell you how many fish I have caught doing this the last few years fish that I used to pass up looking for my next target to cast to that was in the open.
Lay down's are another area that I now target with a Bronzeye Frog or Bronzeye Popper. Before I may have gone up and put a few flips into the lay down but now I fire a few casts with a frog or popper into the lay down before I move into position to present a flipping bait. After using this tactic I now believe I am catching bass that I may have been spooking in the past with my trolling motor trying to get close enough to be able to put a bait into the lay down. I can also say that I have taken a few bass that would not come up on the frog also. This comes out to be a good double presentation that will take both active and inactive bass at the same time.
For this tactic I fish a 7ft to 7 ft, 6 in medium heavy action baitcaster rod setup with a matching baitcasting reel in the 6-1:1 reel speed, spooled with Sunline FX2 Braided line in 50 to 60lb.
Rip Rap Areas
In the past I would maybe put a topwater on these areas but I have been using a Bronzeye Popper with greater success and I think this has to do with being able to get the bait closer to shore than I could any other bait without damaging the bait. How many times can you throw a topwater bait up onto the rocks and get it back in one piece? I bet not many and throw in the facts that you may have some lay down's along the way and you have a perfect environment to throw a Bronzeye Popper.
I can walk the dog with the Bronzeye Popper just like I can a Spook and the biggest factor it is weedless I now have the option to throw into cover if needed. By using a Spro Split Snap instead of tying your line directly to the eye of the Bronzeye Popper or Frog you can walk both these baits pretty much in place when conditions call for it. When you get your bait to the area that you want to work, slow way down and start to slightly twitch your bait in place. This will cause the bait to walk the dog in place and create the strike you have been looking for.
For this tactic I use a 7ft to 7'6'' medium heavy action rod with a little bit of tip. I match this with a baitcaster reel in the 6:1-1 speed that is spooled with Sunline FX2 in 50 to 60lb braided line.
This of all the locations that we are going to talk about today is probably one of the most overlooked areas of where you can fish a Brozeye Frog or Popper. I can bet you have thrown everything around a dock but have never tried to throw a frog or popper. If the dock is high enough I will try to skip the frog up under the dock. Now this may take a little practice to master but once you do it will help you in all the other areas that you will try to get your frog into. Do not over look empty docks that have canopy's these areas hold bass that are many times overlooked.
For this type of fishing I will generally make one change in my presentation if I am fishing in real clear water conditions I will switch to fluorocarbon as my line choice when fishing around docks. Much of this has to do with the bass being able to see the braided line. When you fish this presentation around cover or in lay downs the bass do not get a good chance to see the line because the cover many times will help hide the line as it lays across the surface. But when you are fishing in open water that changes you do not have anything to break up the line attached to the lure and if you are fishing in clear water this may cost you bass by the end of your day.
For this change I will spool up with Sunline Shooter in 22 to 25lb test. Looking back this is how you used to fish a frog bait before the advancement of braided line 15 years ago. Yes you will have a little more stretch in your line but you can still get a good hook set and land the bass you are hooking.
So as you can see there are more areas to fish a Spro Bronzeye Frog and Popper it than just around cover or in the slop. The next time you hit the water tie on a frog or popper and go to work I bet you will be surprised at some of the places you get strikes in, places I bet you have never thought about fishing a frog in before.
To see Spros line up of Bronzeye Frogs and Popper or what else they have to offer please log onto www.spro.com