Open water

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topwater popper bass fishing lure in bass mouth

While both a popping frog and a popper work well in open water, I’d recommend one over the other given certain scenarios. For starters, the popper is better when trying to mimic shad and especially when fish are rolling on a bait and not really eating it. The dangling treble hooks that hang from the bottom of a popper give you a far better chance of hooking up with a fish that’s simply swiping at a bait versus the tucked-in, tight weedless hooks of a popping frog.

That being said, I don’t always suggest a popper for open water. There are certain scenarios, like when fishing for big fish in particular, that I’ll lean towards a popping frog in open water over a popper. The reason is that a popping frog has two bold, strong hooks that won’t hardly bend. Whereas the thin-wire treble hooks on a popper are more prone to opening up. So if I’m fishing a mayfly hatch for instance and I’m expecting a big bite, I’ll go with the popping frog which I can fish on heavier gear and trust that the hooks won’t bend; even though I’m fishing in open water and a popper would technically work well, too.