BassWestUSA - July/August, 2009, Page 15

It’s crazy. I have no expla- nation for it. But, that doesn’t change the fact that it’s true. I don’t have to know why some- thing is true, however. All I need to know is that it is. That’s enough for me. That bad-bass attitude ex- tends through all the seasons of the year. Toad-sized bass will eat them anytime the water tempera- ture is over 55 degrees, or so. Of course, the bite is better as the water temperature rises. But, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be fishing with one when it’s cool. And, forget all that stuff you heard about only fishing them in vegetation. That may be where they started but it isn’t where they end. They’re good anywhere the water is somewhat shallow. Anywhere includes over channel breaks and ledges as well as around rock and boulders, or along riprap for that matter. In fact, some of the best places are nontraditional, places where you would traditionally think about throwing a jig. Again, I’m not really sure about the why of that, but I am sure that it’s true. In my opinion it’s because bass don’t always see these lures as frogs. I think they see feeding bream, shad, mice, rats or maybe even a bird. In fact when I customize the colors of my frogs – usually with a Magic Marker or a Per- manent Sharpie – I often think about forage other than a frog. At times I’ll put a big, black spot on them to resemble a shad. Or, sometimes I’ll add tiger stripes to their bellies to resemble small bass. And, I’ve been known to put a red spot on their throats to resemble something coming from the bank. Like all specific fishing techniques, how- ever, froggin’ requires the right frog and the right tackle. There are a number of quality frogs on the market today. But, without question, the best one is the new Mad Maxx from Tru-Tungsten. It’s just the right size and design to get the job done no matter where you’re fishing. And, it comes equipped with a Youvella Hack Attack Frog Hook. I designed this hook specifically for frog fishing. It’s a dou- ble hook, with a wide gap, and, most importantly, it’s razor sharp and tough as a ten penny nail. It’ll hook and handle anything I catch. Another feature I like about the Mad Maxx is that you can throw it darn near anywhere. Don’t be afraid to skip it behind docks into the biggest jumble of drift you can find. In most cases it’ll come through just fine. And, even if it does hang its stout hook, along with some heavy line, will allow you to pull it free. My line choice is 50 or 65-pound-test Cajun braid. I’m not fooling around with anything that attacks a Mad Maxx. I want the heaviest and toughest stuff I can get my hands on. I throw everything on a 7 foot, medium-heavy Quantum Tour Edition PT rod unless the cover is really heavy. Then I’ll switch to a 7 foot, 2 inch Quantum Tour Edition Senko Rod. Either way, when condi- tions are normal I mount a Quantum Tour Edition PT Reel (6.3:1 gear ratio) to them. But, when I want something a little faster I swap it for a Burner model (7:1 gear ratio). Once you’re all rigged up and ready to go spend a little time getting your head on straight. Frog fishing is not something you should attempt to do causally. It’s much like flipping and pitch- ing or any other big bass technique in that you have to commit to it, both mentally and physically. When you throw a frog you’re looking for a handful of bites every day. You must understand that you’ll go through periods

of time with no bites. Some- times those periods of time will last a couple of hours. You must believe that the biggest bass in the lake are going to bite, that if you work hard enough you will be rewarded at some point. The other part of look- ing for a handful of bites is location. As I said earlier frogs aren’t just about grass. Work one anywhere the wa- ter’s shallow around big bass looking habitat. Spotting that type of habitat can be chal- lenging, but challenging doesn’t mean impossible. When I’m look- ing for the right froggin’ spot I like to think of myself as a bass – the biggest, meanest one in the neighborhood. I want to be the bass that all the other bass are afraid to mess with. Then I think about where I might want to live, keeping in mind that I can live wherever I want. Once I spy that type of spot I start fishing, slow at first – I might even cut the legs short on my frog to slow it down even more – but then faster if nothing happens. At times I’ll walk my bait. Of course, I’ll be wrong much of the time. But, when I’m right the water will explode, my heart will skip a beat and I’ll have a memory that lasts my lifetime. And, really, isn’t that what fishing’s all about? BW

July/August 2009