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Fishing heavy algae pond

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Hey all:

There is a local pond by me that has TONS of algae on it..I am trying to get advice on fishing it. I have gone out with a hollow body frog and get TONS of strikes, however, when I go to set the hook there is nothing and when I pull the frog out it is COVERED in the algae. The algae mats the top and is on the bottom too. I know there are some big fish in the pond, as I have had some come out of the water to get the frog. Any advice? The pond is a constant struggle with cast and pull of gunk.

There are no real openings in the mat, I just fish the frog along the top nice and slow and they come up and grab. I am thinking that when they pull down it brings so much mat with it that the hooks don't have a chance to set.

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Are you sure they're bass?  Big enough to take the frog?

Make yourself wait for the hook set. Blow up... 1 and 2 and SET!

Josh

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Yeah.  Its important to give the frog that 2 sec wait before the hook set.  That is one of the hardest things to do in my opinion.

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Yes, I wait for the 2 secs....ive used a frog to catch bass before. And you can see the bass come out of the water...but after the 2 secs and boom I pull up and its just full of algae and no bass.

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Sounds similar to what I'm dealing with on one of the ponds at the house. There's heavy vegetation matted out at the top with algae and some duckweed on top. I do have some open water, but the bass don't seem to be active outside of the vegetation.  They'll bust a frog and take it but like you I think they're getting more crap than lure. 

You might try punching. I found that although there are a ton of weeds if I can get a lure through the top clean the water opens up quite a bit below the surface. 

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Switch to a soft plastic toad.  Itll sit on top and the hook up percentage is greater.  Trust me if the bass want the meal youre offering they are more than capable of getting it through vegetation.
  Ive caught them through thiiiick duckweed mixed with milfoil.

 

You may want to consider speeding up your retrieve significantly which can cause a bass to explode on it out of pure reaction.  If you go slow they may only be tempted to take a swipe at it.

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i would not wait 2 seconds to set the hook, i do so immediately once i see the bait disappear underwater. that 2 seconds is 2 seconds longer the bass has to spit your bait. think of it like this, once you reel up any slack and start the hookset motion that two seconds has already passed, so i set the hook immediately with good success...

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I was gonna say try a plastic frog, Im not sure about a full 2 mississippi of a delay but definitely let the fish take the frog. Also, as mentioned, punch the algae. If they are hitting a frog through the stuff, imagine them having a meal in front of their face! Try something super streamlined like a beaver or even a 7"-9"power worm if you're bringing up too much nastiness. 

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When they strike the frog and miss, yank it out and toss a wacky rigged worm to the same spot. You'll get some of those fish.

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Agree with reel ess.  The first hit will often open up a hole and the second cast, if placed in the same spot, will often produce a hookable bass.  Sometimes they will hit as often as 3 or 4 times.

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When I say "One and two and set" I count like CPR chest compressions.

You might try trailer hooks if the toads don't work.

Josh

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For topwater explosions, a good rule of thumb is "Wait for the weight."  Seems simple.  Your line is always tight when fishing topwater, so you'll know if you feel the fish on or not.  Usually, like others have said, you'll feel the weight after only a second or two.  If you set the hook immediately, it's a 50/50.  Wait for the weight and you have about a 90% success rate.  I too sometimes set too early so sometimes it can help to always be expecting the strike and have a rehearsed plan on what you will do in your head.  This cuts down on the  'Oh wow gotta sling the hook' mentality if you're taken by surprise. 

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Ditch the hollow frog altogether and just throw a weedless wacky of some sort senko ocho dinger  with hook positioned 90 degrees something that will cause a commotion but when strike happens is more easily sucked down. A frog will want to float stay above the slop the wacky will fall. Too many times Ive seen a frog actually go airborne tossed to a side from bass busting through slop.

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I try other baits than the hollow body frog too. Weightless lizards, ribbon tail worms, paddle tail worms, soft plastic frogs like the horny toad, 5" grubs, soft paddletails like keitechs, and zoom speed worms (and similar baits) rigged weedless with appropriate sized ewg hooks all reeled slowly and steady on or near the top. Weightless Texas rigged trick worms in bright colors, stickworms like the senko, and soft jerkbaits like the super fluke all retrieved with varying pauses, twitches, and harder here's from the top to as far down as they will sink. Lightweight pegged 1/16-1/8 oz (so it doesnt get buried) Texas rigs with ribbontail, straight tail, and curly tailed worms, and heavier (1/2oz-1 1/2oz ) Texas rigs, jigs, and punch rigs with compact baits like punch craws and plastic worms that will sink through the weeds and get down to the fish. Add rattles to all baits if possible to make it easier to find. And use either bright colors or black and blue so the fish can see them

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10 hours ago, UPSmallie said:

For topwater explosions, a good rule of thumb is "Wait for the weight."  Seems simple.  Your line is always tight when fishing topwater, so you'll know if you feel the fish on or not.  Usually, like others have said, you'll feel the weight after only a second or two.  If you set the hook immediately, it's a 50/50.  Wait for the weight and you have about a 90% success rate.  I too sometimes set too early so sometimes it can help to always be expecting the strike and have a rehearsed plan on what you will do in your head.  This cuts down on the  'Oh wow gotta sling the hook' mentality if you're taken by surprise. 

i disagree with this. my line is not always tight when fishing top water, it really depends on your retrieve. at times i pause my top water for a few seconds and there is a slack bow in the line. i often get hit on the pause. or sometimes the fish swims right at you after hitting your bait, in such cases there is slack that has to be reeled up. im not going to wait for the fish to swim around and tighten the line itself before setting the hook because im "waiting for the weight", nope, fish will have spit it by then, im going to quickly reel the slack and set the hook as fast as possible. i also feel that youre just throwing percentages out there. because i do not wait once i see the bait dissappear underwater, that means the bass has it, why wait for him to spit it? i set immediately after the bait dissappears with no wait and have a good success rate thats certainly better than 50/50.

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I would use a Frog that has a bright top so you can see it clearly on long casts, especially if the frog sits low in the water and is in heavy weeds. I would simply put a few Spots of Bright Red Nail Polish on the top or use a Red Marker, it will wipe off even if permanent in many cases, but the best way to set the hook on a frog is to make sure it is under water.

I use the Spro Colored from that has a white body with Bright Pink top as my main frog when I want white, and if I want to use a black frog, I always color the top with 4 Red Dots. Never has caused less strikes at all. I do it to most of my topwater lures as well, All my floating Rip Baits have a line of red on top except for lighter ones I don't cast on windy days or on light line. I have never noticed it causing less strikes even on expensive "Pretty baits", but my favorite lures lack 50% of their color anyway.

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I've been fishing a similar type of pond lately. There are a few open spots but the stuff is so thick under the surface that anything weightless basically just sits on top of it. My only real success has come from a pegged 3/4oz tungsten weight and a beaver style bait with a 3/0 flippin hook, or an ewg hook and a big worm like the rage anaconda. See if that works for you. 

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What seemed to help me was switching the color of the frog from white bottom to black..as soon as i did that they seemed to zero in on the lure better...they crushed it alot more

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Also make sure you're using a stiff enough rod. I'm sure you know this but you really want that extra power for a strong hook up. Pitching soft plastics to the open areas could work. I would try the fluke / weightless but also weedless. You could drag it over the top and let it fall in the open patches. 

Nobody gets every fish that strikes their frog. I agree with @Montanaro and would try the soft plastic frog as well. Many to choose from! Pick your poison. 

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