Frog Fishing: What Is the Best Frog Rod for Bass Fishing?

by | Published on: Dec 5, 2022 | Bass Fishing Rods | 0 comments

Frog fishing is a dedicated bass fishing technique that can be used almost anywhere there are fish. When fishing a frog, the angler must select dedicated gear explicitly designed for the punishing hooksets and lightweight lures thrown to maximize effectiveness. Here we explain how to choose the best frog rod for bass fishing.

Is a Frog Rod Needed?

Frog fishing involves working a topwater frog, typically across cover, to draw a strike. Largemouth bass strikes are explosive and come from a place of ambush. More often than not, this ambush point is vegetation, such as weeds or lily pads. Bass will use any advantage, including those weeds, to free themselves from the hook.

Because frog fishing happens in areas of dense cover, frog rods for bass fishing must have a heavy enough action to fight the fish aggressively; finesse isn’t needed when fishing frogs.

Indeed, accuracy is a bonus, but rods don’t need the sensitivity required when casting soft plastics. In short, don’t try and use your finesse gear when fishing a frog; you will end up frustrated and frog-less in short order.

Frog fishing calls for a rod with a fast action tip to quickly set the hook, and a rod blank with plenty of stiffness, to wrestle them free. If you already have a rod that fits this description, great. If not, many anglers reach for a specific frog rod.

Make sure you take a look at our complete guide to frog fishing to get the most from this exciting approach.

A nice Florida Largemouth pulled from under the lily pads

What Makes a Good Frog Rod?

Rod Type

Frog rods are conventional casting rods. The rod blanks of frog rods are designed to deliver accuracy while maintaining their stacking power. Most frog rods feature a protrusion on their bottom, and this finger groove gives extra purchase for your hand while working the frog and setting the hook.

Rod Length

The angler should select a rod of seven to eight feet in length to deliver frogs to where they need to go. Anything shorter won’t provide the necessary leverage to turn fish from their runs into tangled cover. At the same time, longer rods become too cumbersome for the high-speed retrieves needed in most frogging scenarios.

Rod Action

A frog rod should be flexible enough to deliver light lures with accuracy while having enough strength to hook a fish. The rating for a rod’s bend is called the action. A fast-action gives the sensitivity needed to dance the frog quickly during the retrieve. Slower action rods won’t provide the responsiveness that the light frog lure needs to work effectively. Because most of the rod’s flex is at the top, a fast-action rod also allows for aggressive hooksets. A solid hookset is necessary for countering the fish when it attempts to free itself by diving through cover.

A fast action rod tip

Rod Power

If you see a pattern here, you are correct. Frog rods should be heavy power, as frogging is done in or around cover. You will likely be fishing with a heavy braided line that necessitates a heavy power rod. Having a rod blank with at least a medium-heavy power rating allows you to pressure the fish to turn it away from snags and docks.

A heavy power rod also gives you the backbone needed to muscle the fish from the weeds. No matter how aggressive you are with the retrieve, the fact remains that the fish will put vegetation between you and it. Having the stiffness to pull back against that fish and drag it back to you is a must-have quality.

The Best Frog Rods for Bass Fishing Depending on Conditions

Unfortunately, there is no single best frog rod for bass fishing. The right rod will depend on the conditions you are fishing in, which are likely determined by the time of year. With this in mind, we’ve broken our recommendations up by condition so that you can find the best frog rod for your situation.

An open water weedline

Open Water

A majority of fishermen overlook open water frog fishing. Open water frogging isn’t just lobbing a frog into the middle of the lake and working it back; open water refers to fishing the open water that is parallel to cover. Cover could be weedlines or shorelines, especially banks with undercuts. Since cover is limited, your rod action and line weight don’t have to be as heavy as they would for more serious cover.

Lew’s Speed Stick TP-1 IM8 Casting Rod

  • Power: Medium-heavy
  • Action: Fast
  • Lure size: 1/4-7/8 oz
  • Line: 12-25 lb
  • Length: 7′

The Lew’s Speed Stick is a solid contender for a frog rod. The rod’s narrow guides reduce the chance of line knots while simultaneously providing effortless casts with pinpoint accuracy. Since this rod was set up for lighter lines and lighter lures, we have kept it in the open water category. It does have a decent backbone but is better suited for putting frogs in front of cruising fish than dragging them out of the pads.

Duckett Fishing Silverado Casting Rod

  • Power: Medium-Heavy
  • Action: Fast
  • Lure size: 3/8-3/4 oz
  • Line: 10-20 lb
  • Length: 7’3″

The Duckett Silverado has all of the features of a higher-end rod without the price tag. The rod itself was comfortable and easy to fish all day, while its medium-heavy power felt suitable for open water and grass bed fishing.

Falcon Rods HD Casting Rod

  • Power: Medium
  • Action: Fast
  • Lure size: 1/4-3/8 oz
  • Line: 8-17 lb
  • Length: 7’6″

While not explicitly designed for frog fishing, the Falcon HD has several features that make it great for fishing lighter frogs. The fuji guides and cork handle both stand up to the abuse of long hours tossing frogs and hauling fish out of the weedlines. The caveat, again, is that it is better suited for lighter lures and line weight, but it’s an excellent rod at a price point well below the competition.

A mixture of lily pads and marsh grass

Medium Cover

Medium cover is what most bass fishermen picture when they think of frogging. Not only is this the stereotypical picture of frogging, but odds are it’s what your local lake most resembles. Many aquatic plants thrive in specific depths. For example, lily pads have a maximum depth of six feet. Targeting edges and breaks in vegetation, such as weed beds or channels, makes frogging even more exciting.

Ardent Denny Brauer Froggin Rod

  • Power: Medium-heavy
  • Action: Fast
  • Lure size: 1/2-3/4 oz
  • Line: 15-30 lb
  • Length: 7’2″

It sure feels like it should be priced higher for a rod capable of hauling big bass out of cover. The action is a tad “slower” than the competition, but for what the average medium cover ponds dish out, it’s more than capable.

Denali Lithium Series

  • Power: Heavy
  • Action: Fast
  • Lure size: 1/2-1 oz
  • Line: 15-25 lb
  • Length: 7’4″

The Denali Lithium holds its own against many rods on this list. It is well balanced and designed for tossing frogs and other medium-weight baits over distance. Despite my preference for muted colors, the silver graphite wraps look great. While the look doesn’t affect performance, it does make jokes referring to it as a “bass slayer” more appropriate.

St Croix Mojo Bass Casting Rod

  • Power: Heavy
  • Action: Fast
  • Lure size: 3/8-1.5 oz
  • Line: 15-25 lb
  • Length: 7’4″

It would be almost sacrilege not to mention St Croix when discussing fishing rods. Since its inception, St Croix has been a gold standard for rods, and the Mojo Bass Casting Rod is no exception. The length balances well and casts frogs accurately. The Mojo takes the abuse endured when pulling bass out of weeds in its stride.

Mixed vegetation and sunken docks make for great, if not challenging, heavy cover

Heavy Cover

Some anglers are lucky enough to fish honey holes that are chock full of cover, shallow lakes with hydrilla, lily pads, grasses, and areas with downed limbs. Such locations are true bass playgrounds, but they do come with challenges. All of that vegetation make hooksets and fights much more difficult. Anything but the stiffest of rods will leave you at a disadvantage when a big fish tries to wrap itself around a Bushell of hydrilla.

Berkley E-Motion Punching Rod

  • Power: Extra Heavy
  • Action: Fast
  • Lure size: 1-4 oz
  • Line: 15-30 lb
  • Length: 7’6″

If you are looking for the beefiest rod on this list, here it is. The micro guides paired with the extra heavy rod blank are designed to launch heavy lures, so your frog will have no problem reaching the next hole in the pads. The foam handles work well but don’t offer the same level of sturdiness as the rest of the rod.

Daiwa Tatula-XT Bass Casting Rod

  • Power: Heavy
  • Action: Extra fast
  • Lure size: 1/2-2 oz
  • Line: 55-80 lb
  • Length: 7’4″

If it were possible to create the perfect frogging rod, Daiwa have done it with the Tatula-XT. Graceful handling with a rock-hard hook set. It would be hard to say anything negative about this rod, so we won’t.

Dobyns Rods Champion XP Series

  • Power: Heavy
  • Action: Fast
  • Lure size: 3/8-2 oz
  • Line: 15-30 lb
  • Length: 7’3″

This highly agile rod gives plenty of sensitivity for “walking the dog” but has the power to drag anything off its stump. This is a rod for the serious fisherman, capable of launching frogs and doing so in style with the long real cork handle.

Multi-Purpose Rods

While we, as anglers, do our best to have a setup for each condition and type of fishing, there are times when we need to make a compromise and pick a multi-purpose rod. These rods can pull double-duty by pitching jigs or casting swimbaits when the time is right.

Sometimes, it helps to change to a different technique… A quick change landed this pig

Abu Garcia Veritas Casting Rod

  • Power: Medium
  • Action: Fast
  • Lure size: 1/4-1 oz
  • Line: 12-20 lb
  • Length: 7’3″

This super-light rod is an absolute joy to spend a day with. Abu uses titanium alloy in their rod guides and reel mount, shaving ounces off the already svelte rod. It is slightly under-gunned for heavy cover fishing and excels with lighter lures, so it could double as a finesse rod when a dock is just begging for a Senko.

St. Croix Bass X Casting Rod

  • Power: Medium-heavy
  • Action: Fast
  • Lure size: 3/8-1 oz
  • Line: 12-20 lb
  • Length: 7’1″

The St Croix bass X Casting Rod is an excellent jack of all trades fishing rod. It does come in on the short end of the playing field for length, but it’s capable of pitching frogs with enough power behind it to pull them out of most cover. If you need to compromise and purchase a rod for bank fishing, running crankbaits to frogs, this is our top recommendation.

Frog Fishing Setups


You will need more than just a rod to haul bass out of the weeds. You will want a dedicated reel for frogging to get the most out of your frog setup. Frogging reels are still baitcasters, but you need to make sure they have a large enough line capacity for the heavy braid and a fast enough gear ratio so you can crank down and muscle the lunkers out of their weed beds.

For gear ratios, a 7.5:1 or 8.0:1 is ideal. These high-speed ratios allow for precision reeling to mimic the movements of a frog and trigger the strikes we all want to see. Just as important as the action is the ability to quickly take up slack or gain line back when a fish turns.


As mentioned before, braid is the best way to go when it comes to line on a frog setup. Braid has high abrasion resistance, making it ideal for heavy cover fishing. Braid also has minimal stretch compared to monofilament. The forgiving nature of mono is not a desirable attribute when frogging, as hard hook sets are needed.

A do-all weight for a braid is 50 pounds. A fifty-pound braid provides enough strength without giving up on your reach when throwing out a frog. If fishing heavy cover, I go for a 60-65 pound braid; conversely, when fishing light cover or open water, 40 will work.

The most direct connection between you and the fish

Leaders are not required for frogging; some anglers choose to employ leaders in very clear conditions or when they expect to snag a frog to the point of a breakoff. For nearly all frogging, you can tie your frog straight to your mainline for the most direct connection between you and the fish.


Frogging is a skill set that requires a commitment to pay dividends. Building a dedicated frog setup will drastically increase your ratio of success when compared to throwing a frog with any old setup. You will be casting more efficiently with a dedicated casting reel loaded with heavy braid, allowing you to feel every twitch of the frog as you skip it over the pads.

When the bass lurking below explodes in magnificent largemouth fashion, you can set the hook with conviction knowing the rod’s fast action is doing its job. When you lift your rod high, knowing it has more than enough power to drag that toad out of the lily pads, you know you have the correct setup.