Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
nieten7642

Walking the dog....

Recommended Posts

Hey guys! Having a little trouble with something:

I am re-acquainting myself with bass fishing as of the last 6 months. I am LOVING it! I am trying to learn a lot of new stuff that I don't remember encountering when I was a kid. One such item is the "walk-the-dog" retrieve. What is the trick to this? I am having no luck at all. I have been trying it with a SPRO bronze eye frog, but I get nothing but a straight "chug" action. I saw Ish Monroe do it with this lure, but clearly I am no Ish Monrow. No side to side movement at all. I am using a 7 foot MH action spinning rod with 10 lb. mono line. I know the guys I have seen do this retrieve have usually been using heavy braid line. Is that my problem? Any tips to learning this retrieve? They make it look so easy on TV, and I am starting to feel like an idiot not being able to do it. I am fairly coordinated, but can't seem to get this down. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks in advance!

Josh

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wrong bait to walk the dog.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Agreed, a hollow body frog is not the easiest to walk the dog with.  Most topwater lures whether hard plastic or wood can be "walked"  even if they are poppers.  It's all about cadence, slack line, and reel/line management.  Try a Spook, Skitter walk, whatever Lucky Craft's offering is, and see if you don't do better.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh yeah WELCOME by the way.  By the looks of that avatar, you are my kinda guy.  "in a strictly heterosexual kind of way of course"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The answer to get any surface bait to walk is to hit slack line, not the lure. Once cast, snug up the line and then pull of 1/4 rod's length of line. Take short snappy strokes with the rod tip always maintaining slack line between the rod and lure. A bit of practise and you will have it. Slack line is the secret.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The answer to get any surface bait to walk is to hit slack line, not the lure. Once cast, snug up the line and then pull of 1/4 rod's length of line. Take short snappy strokes with the rod tip always maintaining slack line between the rod and lure. A bit of practise and you will have it. Slack line is the secret.

nieten7642, don't give up on "walking the dog."  Get the right lures and use the suggestions given here, especially what George Welcome mentions above.  When bass are hitting topwater, walking a Zara Spook or similar lure has got to be one of the most fun ways to fish, at least for me.  Between jerks, you will turn the reel handle to retrieve line but not much.  You want to leave enough slack to allow the lure to cut side-to-side on your jerks.  Also, remember that when a bass strikes, wait until you feel him before setting the hook.  Bass will often swipe at these types of lures without taking them in their mouths so you'll miss them if you set the hook immediately.  After 15 - 30 minutes of practice, or possibly even less, a lot of this will come to you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the support and the tips! I will try them out.

I was planning on getting a good hard bait like a Lucky Craft Sammy and trying my luck out with this. The SPRO frog may not be the easiest bait to walk, but I have seen it walked before. Maybe I should learn on a Sammy and then try it on the frog when I get a feel for it?

Thanks again!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The answer to get any surface bait to walk is to hit slack line, not the lure. Once cast, snug up the line and then pull of 1/4 rod's length of line. Take short snappy strokes with the rod tip always maintaining slack line between the rod and lure. A bit of practise and you will have it. Slack line is the secret.

Excellent advice. Thank you.

Just to clarify, when you mentioned "maintaining the slack line" and "slack line is the secret", do you mean keep some slack in the line at all times? Or do you mean keep the slack snugged up at all times? I know that the lure needs some slack to have the freedom to walk, but should I be tugging on slack line or snugged up line? I am not quite clear on how to "maintain" the slack line properly. You said I should be hitting the slack line, but then you said I should snug up the line? Then would I be tugging the snug line... or the slack line?

Sorry for my confusion. I tend to overthink myself into confusion sometimes.  :-[

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Your jerks should be made when you have slack in the line.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Your jerks should be made when you have slack in the line.

Are you calling me a jerk? Just kidding.

Gotcha. Then do I jerk to the point of snapping the line tight, or just shy of that... you know, ensuring that there is still slack in the line, just a lot less of it? I guess what I am asking is are my jerks supposed to actually tug at the bait itself or just the slack line before the line becomes tight? Tight or just shy of tight? Does my question make sense?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest avid

Your going to be pleasantly surpirsed at how easy it is to walk the dog with a sammy.

time was, walking a zara spook took alot of practice.  Now with the modern lure design the sammy and all the modern designs will walk with ease.  The key is still to twitch rythmically on a slack line, but you'll see that after just a few casts you will have it down well enough to catch plenty of bass.

good luck and have fun.

P.S.   don't tell him I told you, but I'm not sure about chug bugs' "strictly heterosexual sort of way" remark.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To try to give you an idea of what amount of slack line to use I said: snug the line on the cast and then feed back about a 1/4 rod's slack. You will be hitting th slack line, never the lure. If you concentrate on keeping the slack in the line you will be "walking the dog" in short order.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

From the looks of your avatar your a bank beater.  When I first started trying to walk the dog, I was on a wall which was about 3-4 feet above the water.  It was surprisingly easy to walk the dog with a spook.  

My advice, if you can, is to find something to stand on that is at least a couple feet above the waters surface.  Cast out your spook or sammy, hold the rod to one side with a semi slack line, and snap the line so the lure sashays to one side.  And then repeat.  I usually do 2 jerks, and then turn the crank handle.  Bass will almost always hit a topwater on the pause.  Usually I do 2-3 jerks, then a pause, 1 jerk, then a pause.  Try different cadences to see what works best once you get it.

 

Another tip to make it easier.  Whichever hand you reel with, point the rod in that direction and down at a slight angle to begin your retrieve.  

I find the bigger and heavier the lure the easier it is to get a feel for walking the dog.  A smaller, lighter lure will be the hardest untill you get the feel for it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks so much, guys. I really appreciate the suggestions. I can't wait to get a Sammy and try this all out now. You guys are the best!

Josh

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest avid

Just another bit of advice that works for me.

If you don't already know how, learn how to tie a good loop knot.

The rapala knot is excellent and is visible at their website.

the loop gives the lure more wiggle room.  I use it on all my walking topwaters and hard jerkbaits.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am new to bass fishing too and the advice on this forum has been great.  My question is, is the walking the dog technique simillar to one you would use on a jerkbait?  I have been learning to fish a Smithwick Suspending Rogue.  Here's my current technique, jerk, jerk (with my rod angled to my right side), pause.  Should I have slack as well?  Also, should my rod tip be high or low?    Thanks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would say it is the same general motion with a jerkbait, but you are going to want to keep a tighter line than if you were using a spook-type bait. There is really no magical motion recipe for working either of the baits. Jerks, pauses, twitches and the like can all be mixed in....the key thing to remember is to make the bait look ERRATIC, since you are imitating a wounded baitfish with these presentations.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Heres one thing to ponder, Aside from whatever you observed from Ish M.

Why do you need to make a frog bait walk the dog? Its definitley not natural for a frog to tightly zig zag and pause over the water, as when walking the dog. Maybe im just hating on walking the frog cause it sounds too hard for me to do.  >:(

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Heres one thing to ponder, Aside from whatever you observed from Ish M.

Why do you need to make a frog bait walk the dog? Its definitley not natural for a frog to tightly zig zag and pause over the water, as when walking the dog. Maybe im just hating on walking the frog cause it sounds too hard for me to do.  >:(

LOL... No, that's a good point. I was only trying to "walk-the-frog" because of the baits I have seen walked, that's a lure I happen to have. I just saw Ish do it so I thought I would be able to do it too. YEAH RIGHT! It didn't look all that un-natural to me, but I see your point about frogs not swimming that way. What about an injured frog? Hmmm... It just looked cool to me. That's part of fishing too, isn't it?

UPDATE: I picked up that Lucky Craft Sammy this morning and tried it out in my neighborhood pond (with no fish in it... d**n!!)... and I was "walking-the-dog" on my first attempt!!! It was SO easy once I had the right bait I guess. I may try to "walk-the-frog" again some day, but for right now I am just going to keep having fun with/improve upon "walking-the-sammy". Thanks again for all the advice!

Josh

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm pretty comfortable walking the dog with hard plastic topwater baits, and I still have a lot of trouble getting a hollow bodied frog to walk.  I have had most of my luck chugging a frog along.  I do try to use a cadence with a frog and after a few chugs I will let it rest with the "tail down" for 10-15 seconds.  Sorry, I know you asked about walking the dog, but I get excited when a frog discussion pops up.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also you can walk a senko really good...cast it out then reel in real fast till it comes to the surface...than slow down your retreive and walk it by holding your rod tip real high and jerk and reel at the same time

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The advice of tieing a loop not or flemish knot is just as key as the motion.    There are a lot of new limp lines that can be tied with a standard palomar knot, but the right knot allows you to impart this action easier.

Matt.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

http://search.netscape.com/ns/boomframe.jsp?query=SPRO+lures&page=1&offset=0&result_url=redir%3Fsrc%3Dwebsearch%26requestId%3Df03b048b9fddb5be%26clickedItemRank%3D1%26userQuery%3DSPRO%2Blures%26clickedItemURN%3Dhttp%253A%252F%252Fwww.spro.com%252F%26invocationType%3D-%26fromPage%3DNSCPToolbarNS%26amp%3BampTest%3D1&remove_url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.spro.com%2F

Yes, you CAN walk the Frog! I finally got the rhythm with one after a LOT of practice in the swimming pool. The right rod, line (no fluoro or really thick mono), and wrist action will do the trick. Hit the link to SPRO, select "SPRO News" at the top, then scroll down to "Dean and The Frog"...view video...learn.

FR

PeeYess: the larger size will be easier to walk.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • fishing forum

    fishing

    fishing rods

    fishing reels

    fishing forum

    fishing

    bass fish

    fish for bass
    fish

×