Every now and then, a unique hybrid bait comes along that doesn’t fit neatly into an existing lure category but spans a couple. Brandon Cobb introduces the Zoom Uni Toad — a unique soft body wake bait with attributes of a wake bait, toad, and swimbait. Cobb delves into wake bait fishing, specifically focusing on the versatile and effective ‘uni toad’ bait.
TACKLE USED (retail links)
- BAIT – Zoom Uni Toad: Buy at Tackle Warehouse
- HOOK – EWG Worm Hook, 5/0 or 6/0: Check out Worm Hooks at Tackle Warehouse
- ROD – ARK Brandon Cobb Series Casting Rod, 7’5” Heavy – Fast: Buy at Tackle Warehouse
- REEL – ARK Fishing Gravity 7 Casting Reel (G7-107), 7.1:1: Buy at Tackle Warehouse
- LINE – Yo-Zuri T7 Premium Fluorocarbon, 20- or 25-pound: Buy at Tackle Warehouse, Buy at Bass Pro Shops
WAKE BAIT BASICS
At its most basic, wake bait fishing entails retrieving a lure at relatively low speeds while generating a noticeable surface disruption. The technique shines when bass are feeding up but not engaging with overlay aggressive or fast-moving baits. Cobb introduces the Zoom Uni Toad. Unlike traditional toads, this bait offers a slower, more deliberate action that imitates a struggling meal at the surface.
HOW TO RIG THE UNI TOAD
Cobb walks us through how to properly rig the Uni Toad with a wide gap hook for optimal performance. He demonstrates the importance of hook size and placement to maintain the bait’s action and ensure a solid hookup. While the Uni Toad is designed to be fished solely with the hook as a weight, adding a small pegged bullet weight to the nose allows you to fish it faster without blowing out.
HOW TO FISH THE UNI TOAD
As with most wake baits, a slow to moderate retrieve produces the best results. Discover how adjusting the speed of retrieval can change the bait’s action. Cobb explains the concept of ‘the boat’ – a term he and his partner use to describe the ideal balance and posture of the uni toad in the water for the best presentation.
OPTIMAL GEAR SELECTION
This is bass fishing, as many of us like it best. Cobb uses a heavy power flipping/pitching stick paired with a fast reel spooled with 20- to 25-pound fluorocarbon. Why? Your job is to drive a beefy EWG hook through a hunk of plastic and get penetration, so power is a must.
SETTING THE HOOK
Cobb shares his experience on when and how to set the hook when a bass strikes the Uni Toad. He stresses the importance of giving the fish a second to eat the bait, then removing slack before executing a robust, sweeping hook set.
This lesser-known yet highly effective bass fishing technique is a must-try if you like fishing toads and swimbaits on heavy gear. Give it a go the next time you’re faced with bass feeding “up” in the shallows.