Outside of the weekends, it would probably be a good bet that most of the fishing at our neighborhood ponds is during the evening hours. Actually with summer’s heat, fishing while the sun is low in the sky is a bit more comfortable, cooler and at a time when the fish are biting a little bit better.
I enjoy evening fishing. Even when I go up to the Northwoods of Wisconsin, I often go out for a few hours after dinner. It’s fun to head for the calm waters that the evening usually brings and toss frogs along banks and weedlines.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not talking about going after green creatures that sit on lily pads. I’m talking about floating plastic baits that make bass go crazy.
Froggin’ is fun for a number of reasons. Surface fishing affects several of your senses; sight, sound, and feel.
Sight comes in when you get to see the explosion on the water as a fish jumps on the floating frog. Sound is heard with the loud splash of the fish breaking water to eat the frog. And you get the feel of the rod loading up and getting heavy as the fish takes your bait to deeper water just moments after grabbing it on the surface.
Muskie fishermen get excited when they see a fish follow their bait. In frog fishing, it’s really pretty exciting to watch your bait work its way across the surface of the water, moving at a pace under your control. Tricking a bass into thinking your artificial lure is a real frog swimming on the surface is a real kick.
Here’s a tip for you to increase your odds of getting a hookset while froggin’.
First you have to understand that working a frog along weed tops or next to a bank won’t produce a fish on every cast. Sometimes you may make 5, 10, 20 casts, maybe more before you get that first looker. So as you cast again and again what happens is that you loose your concentration. You mind can wonder and when that explosion on the water comes, you get excited. What’s the first thing you do? Pull back and set the hook!
It’s difficult to not rear back immediately. I even caught myself doing it too. I get excited and jerk back with the rod only to have the frog flying at me like a bullet.
When a bass grabs your bait, you’ll see it and you’ll hear it. Drop your rod tip and point it at the fish. Wait, and I know it’s hard, for the line to start pulling away and loading up your rod. Now you know that the fish has the bait in it’s mouth and it’s time to set the hook. This can take a few seconds that may seem like forever.
As your rod tip is pointing at the water and the time comes to set the hook, set the hook by pulling your arms high over your head with the rod pointing behind you. This is when the rod will be doubled in half because it’s hooked up with a nice fish to fight. You’ll find that a little stiffer rod and heavier line will help for a hook set too.
Patience is important in fishing and believe it or not, concentration is too.
Almost every pond here in suburban Chicagoland has bass and they’ll take your frog baits time and again, especially during the evening bite. I like to walk around the whole pond if I can and with every stop, give the bait 4 to 5 casts in front of me along the banks and 4 to 5 casts behind me where I made casts before. Yes, I’ll cast again over the water that I just tried. Some times fish are on a side of a weedbed that may keep them from jumping on your bait. Make a presentation from another direction and you may coax one out of it’s cover.
Froggin’ is another way to have fun at our local ponds so get yourself a couple, head for the pond, and see that great fishing is not that far away.
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