Frog Fishing from a Kayak

If I were to pick one way to catch bass for the rest of my life, it’d be on a topwater frog. Summer is nearly here and topwater fishing is in full swing. This is probably one of the most popular and exciting ways to catch bass, and in my opinion, even more so from a kayak. 

To get started fishing frogs you want to make sure you have the right equipment. The rod is the most critical piece of the equation. You’re going to want a rod anywhere from 6’10’’ to 7’5’’ in length. I personally like the shorter versions as it will allow you to make more pin-point casts, especially in a seated position from your kayak. The rod should be a Heavy power rod with a Moderate/Fast to a Fast taper, meaning, you want the last 8-10 inches of your rod to have some flexibility so that you can not only cast the frog further, but also walk the frog during the retrieve to give it some action. The rod needs to be heavy as a lot of the time you’ll be fishing your frog around cover that a fish can easily bury you in and come free. That Heavy power will allow you to get that fish back to the boat quickly and prevent the fish from diving. I like a high speed reel, preferably in the 8 to 1 gear ratio range and always 50 pound or higher braided line. Frog selection and color varies depending on water color and the cover you’re fishing. I like to keep it simple and use black frogs with dirty water and white frogs with clear water. If I’m fishing the frog over matted vegetation, I will stick to the darker colored frogs. 

Probably the hardest part of fishing a frog is determining where to fish it. The beauty of doing it from a kayak is getting in skinny and shallow water that the big boats have difficulty access to. In general for throwing frogs, I stick to shallow water areas in less than 5 foot. Prime targets for me are under overhanging trees and when the vegetation is matted up on the surface. Sometimes you will be surrounded by many targets like these and it can be overwhelming in picking where to cast. In this scenario, I like to carefully observe my surroundings and find those subtle differences in what seems to all be the same type of target. These can be changes in the type of grass, emergent vegetation that form points, trees that are both overhanging and submerged and so on. The key is to notice these differences and make a mental note of what it looked like and why that fish may have been there when they bite. This can drastically improve your efficiency while fishing a frog and overtime will become second nature. 

Another challenge of frog fishing is hookup ratio. A lot of folks will say it is the number one technique in losing and missing fish. That is true to an extent but there are things you can do to increase your odds. When you see that bass blow up on your frog your gut instinct is to swing. Waiting 1-2 seconds before setting the hook can dramatically improve your hookup ratio. This requires patience and practice and is still something I have to remind myself at times. It’s also important to have a frog with a soft body to maximize hook exposure and penetration when a bass eats it.  I’ve experimented with a lot of frogs and you want to make sure that whatever frog you choose, that you can easily flatten a frog out with your two fingers but that it will also recoil quickly to retain its shape. 

Frog fishing can be challenging but it is one of the most exhilarating ways to bass fish and a powerful technique to catch bigger fish in the summer. Having the gear and knowledge of where to fish a frog can make all the difference in the world. If it’ a new technique to you, give it a shot this summer and be prepared to hang on. As always, stay safe and tight lines!

-Greg Blanchard 

About Greg Blanchard: Greg has taken the YouTube kayak fishing community by storm over the past few years. His approach to kayak fishing technique is unique and powerful.  Greg fishes from a Native Watercraft Titan Propel 10.5 as his primary craft. You can subscribe to Greg’s YouTube Channel by clicking the button below.

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