Friday, May 13, 2011

Frog Review V2: Soft Bodies

Today as part 2 of my review on Frogs, I’m going to spend some time breaking down my soft plastic frog arsenal. This technique has become really popular over the past few years, and most plastics manufactures make one or more soft body frogs. These can be considered more versatile then the hollow body as the perform well in pads and slop, but shine in open water or around cover

here are some pros and cons of the soft bodied frogs I have fished, and I would love to hear any feedback on what frogs work well for you.

1) Zoom Horny Toad

Pros: Zoom makes a great soft plastic bait and the Horny toad is no exception. It has a very solid durable body that will hold up on multiple fish , a slotted belly allows for good hook placement and cleaner hooksets. The legs give a great kicking action and I have even heard of guys using them as jig trailers.. not me though.Cons: not to many cons to this bait. It is in my top 2 of soft bodied frogs that I fish. My only con may be that they are very popular and sell out super fast.

If I had to pick a flaw, I would say that some guys have issues hooking up due to the thick dense frog body. I have read some posts and product reviews that have suggested cutting a slot between the frogs legs to allow the hook to sit better, thus improving hook-ups.

2) Gulp Bat Wing

Pros: Like all gulp products the Bat Wing frog is loaded up with that special berkeley juice, and it has great movement in the water. The legs kick well and it is easy to keep this frog movingCons: This is easily my least favorite frog. The soft berkeley bait rips easy and is hard to keep proper hook placement. The bait moves well when you are twitching it, but almost free falls when you let any pressure off of it. As with all Gulp products, if the package gets any air in it, this thing drys up lile a stone

3) Spike It - Bog Frog

Pros: Like with all Spike-It products, this frogs comes in very cool colours combinations and has a super strong garlic scent. The longs legs kick well in the water. This baits swims in the water rather then buzzes
Cons: I found this bait works better as a trailer then a stand along frog. The thinner head allows hooks to easily rip them up, and the body is an odd shape making it make to find the perfect hook length.

4) Yum - Buzzfrog

Pros: Similar to the HonryToad this bait has a thicker body then most frogs on the market, it is pretty reziliant and holds up well to the abuse a topwater bait takes. It has a wide legs stance that gives it the loudest buzzbait 'gurgle" when retrieved. This is also one of the only salted frogs on the market today. also like the Hornytoad this bait comes with a hook slot to help keep the hook in place and the frog running weedless

Cons: This bait is meant to run fast. the thick spread legs work great as a buzzbait, but are not as conducive to the popping or stop and start action of other soft body frogs. This does not fall as well in the water as the Horny toad or the Gene Larew three legger (see below)

5) Mann's Hard Nose Swim Toad

Pros: Obviously as the name says this bait has a hard nose and keeps the hook in place better then most. Also as the name states, this frog swims very well, and makes a great camontion in the water. This frogs floats, and can hold up even under the weight of a 6/o hook.

Cons: The legs are long and thin, they are as soft as the nose is hard. They can be easily ripped on a strike. The soft legs are what makes this bait swim well, but dont expect it to churn the water like the buzzfrog, this guy is not built for that.

6) Sizmic Pop'n Toad

Pros: Well, it;s a sizmic toad, same great features as the classic toad. The legs have a strong paddle tail tip and the body although strong is not as dense or thick as the buzzfrog or the horny toad. Like the other it has a recessed hook slot to allow good hook-ups but keep the weeds out. This frog floats well, and the popper is a nice addition

Cons: This frog has a rigid body, i like the action when burning it in as a buzzbait, but I find it hard to work across the pads, and slower swimming is not it's strong suit.

7) Gene Larew - Three Legged Frog

Pros: This is officially my favorite frog on the market today. It does all things that a frog bait should and can do. It swims, the three legs give this bait a great soft swimming action and a nice slow fall on the pause. If you want to turn one, the three legs work like a mini buzz bait. And yes, it can be pulled acorss the slop and pads with ease. A nice color selection is available for these frogs

Cons: Two main flaws, the legs are fairly thin and this from often becomes a two legged frog, but if a standard from losses a leg, it is useless, not this guy, he still has two left to swim with. The body of this frog is also pretty soft. It is easy ti rip the hook out of the hose and do some damage to the bait

8) Net Bait - Frog

No pros and cons for this guy, he is not really in the same category as the above frogs. But with the growing popularity of drop shotting this frog is a nice addition to the line up. When nosed hooked and lightly pulled in the water this frog gives off a great action.


When all is said and done most the above frogs could find a spot in your arsenal. My bet for best overall frog is the Gene Larew. But you cant go wrong with the Zoom Horny toad (best swimmer) or the Yum Buzz frog (best buzz bait). What are you currently using that I'm not? I'm always interested in growing my collection

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