It’s nearly frog season for most Bass fisherman. And in some places they’ve been hitting a hollow body frog for a while now. So if you are looking to add or to pick up a few new hollow body frogs this season read on because my experience with Teckel frogs has been nothing but stellar.
There are many soft hollow body frogs on the market today but not all live up to the hype. The Teckel frog is the creation of Hideki Maeda. Hideki began as a frog novice like all of us. He did however get his feet wet on what are likely the best frogging waters in the world, the California Delta. Less than an hour away from where I write this very article and the place that turned Hideki into quite the frog aficionado. At the time when Hideki began throwing frogs he noticed something. He noticed a lot of room for improvement in the frog dept. So in the early 2000’s Hideki assisted in the design of a new frog which he had hoped would solve his dissatisfaction with the current at that time quota. Of course that first frog didn’t quite cut it for Hideki, being a frog perfectionist and all. Hideki wanted nothing but the best. So he continued to assist in the design of other frogs. Hideki created a masterpiece but sometimes all good things come to an end as did his last creation. What to do… Create your very own frog brand. And so came the creation of Teckel frogs.
What makes a good soft hollow body frog? The creator, an artist with a vision to create perfection is what makes a good frog and this is exactly what Hideki has done. In the US there are two Teckel models available, the Whacker and the Honker. We will get into each in a bit.
There are a few things a good frog must consist of. #1 being overall quality components. What this means is sharp hooks but not just any sharp hooks. As I see it there are two options with the style of hook you choose for your frogs. A large wide gap double hook or as in Teckel’s case Gamakatsu round bend hooks. Now all round bends are not created equal and should not be. One very important and necessary feature must be that those hooks must angle upwards as they do in the Teckel frogs. This alone will increase your hookup ratio tenfold.
But what else? Well, I am glad you asked. #2 on the list of importance would be the suppleness of the hollow body and it’s ability to collapse easily when bit. Hideki’s creation has no issues in this dept. These frogs are so soft in fact that the barb on the hooks will dig into the body. One thing to note however is that the body is thick enough that it will last. It’s important for a frog bait to have a thick wall that is also soft. What this allows is for ease of skipping the lure. A frog that is too soft will not skip well. A frog that is to stiff will not hook up well. A sot frog with a thick wall creates the best of both worlds.
Continuing on now, yes there are more important features of a quality frog. The next few I would say being pretty equally important. Isn’t it nice to know that there is a frog out there which incorporates every possible positive feature you could pack into a frog? That’s not the case with many that focus on marketing just one or two features and you essentially end up with a frog short of features and full of nothing but hype. ok. I’ll get on with it.
Ask yourself how well does my frog cast? No frog is going to cast like a heavy Sammy rocketing through the air but some things will help. Part of this being your own devising. The Teckel frogs cast well and this is because of two reasons in my opinion. Being of a decent weight 1/2oz. and maybe more importantly their narrow profile which sort of allows them a better ability to slice through the air. Now one thing you can and should do to all of your frogs is modify them by trimming the legs. This will allow you to cast further, become hung up less and will aid in short strikes while also providing more action on the pause. The legs will flare more. So, bust out your scissors and start trimming. How much is up to you.
Also important in frog design is the ability of your frog to float. One would think that it is only common sense to design a floating lure to actually float but so many frogs today do not float. They take on water like the Titanic. This is not a good thing and squeezing water out of your frog every cast gets old real quick. Hideki’s creation from my experience does exactly what it’s supposed to do and nothing that it’s not. It floats very well. I have not found myself squeezing incessantly.
What good is a frog if it has all of the above features and still does not perform? It’s no good. Good thing for you, Teckel frogs are nothing but goodness. They perform. Their action is bar none, amazing and consistent. These frogs will walk the dog as good as a Sammy and even almost do a 180 turn if you work it right. This action turns the bass on and makes for tight lines.
As far as I am concerned there is no better frog regardless of the hype. Here is a list of features:
- Tapered shape which allows for easy movement through heavy vegetation.
- Downward nose which has the effect of making the frog push more water. More commotion and allows bass to hone in on and track lure more easily.
Fitting. Hook fits close to body to create a more weedless lure. Easily bend the hooks out for greater hookup when fishing sparser vegetation.
- Stiffness of body. Teckel frogs utilize a soft yet stiff body which allows for increased hook up ratio yet easy of skipping.
- Built in Shock absorption. Hideki’s creation is unique in that the frogs utilize a figure 8 wire at the nose which increases durability of the frog by preventing the nose from tearing during a hook set.
- Drainage hole in the frogs rear. This hole does not penetrate so you will need to check out here in order to see how this feature works. Essentially by adding this hole you will have the ability to cast out any water that may somehow make its way into the frog.
- Square body. If you were to take a cross section of this bait you would find it to be relatively square. This allows the bait to hold it’s shape well for skipping situations yet allows the use of softer plastic for better hook up. Also the bottom of the frog is flat which allows the frog to make a softer more subtle landing. Even flat this frog walks better than keeled frogs.
- Up turned Gamakatsu double hook.
- Variety. Teckel offers a variety of colors to match any condition.
Lastly here, lets go over the two models available in the USA. These two models should have you covered for a variety of situations.
Lets start wit the Honker. The Honker replaces the standard rubber strand legs with metal feet which create a sort of waking effect and more commotion so if you are fishing heavy slop, murkier water, overcast, or windy conditions this is the model you want. This extra commotion from the Honker will allow bass to track your lure and hone in on it. Simply put you will catch more fish under the conditions I listed.
Now, the Whacker model is great for exactly the opposite conditions. If you are fishing open water, sparse vegetation, sunny days, clear water, well then you want the Whacker tied on. The subtle action of the rubber legs flaring in the water will trigger many strikes alongside it’s uncanny ability to walk the dog.
That about sums it up. You can find Teckel frogs here on TackleWarehouse. So what are you waiting for? Forget about the rest and get yourself some Tickle I mean Teckel. Yeah you might feel all tickley inside after hooking up with your new frog from Teckel.
Zeth Kinnett – Fish On & Keep Dreaming!