Monday, May 28, 2018

Z Man Pop Frog Z Review

 Pop Frog Z:   Colors: 5     Length: 4    Weight: NAz   Pack Count: 4

I've been sitting on this review for a couple seasons now, mostly because the influx of new frogs hitting the market each season make it hard to keep up, and secondly because Im not really a fan of Zman soft plastics and buy them only for the review process. With that said, lets take a look at the Zman Pop frog.

Manufactures Description :

Popping, gurgling, and pushing water with each rod twitch, Pop FrogZ float and maintain a horizontal profile - even when motionless on the water - thanks to their buoyant ElaZtech® construction. Their unique hybrid curly-paddle tail legs create incredible swimming leg making this one of the most versatile baits on the market for surface feeders. Take your topwater fishing to a whole new level!

Overall Rating: 6.6/10

Each frog is rated on the following criteria: Quality, Castability, Presentation, Hook-up Ratio Available Options, Product Availability & Price

Quality & Durability: 4.5/5

Zman is best known for the longevity of their Elaztech series of baits and the Zman Prop frog is no different. This frog can be fished all day long, for fish after fish, with almost no fear of loosing a leg or tearing up the bait.

The only real area of concern is if you accidentally place a Zman bait in with any of your other plasric baits, like a Japanese fishing fish, Zman baits eat the competition. 

Castability: 3.0/5

Like with the original Zman frog I find the Z Man Pop Frog to be awkwardly light weight which effects its castability by forcing  me to over power my cast in order to get the distance Im looking for. As we all know when trying to force distance into a cast we are sacrificing accuracy. With this in mind If I was to be fishing the Zman Pop frog I would focus on shorter targeted casts.

The long legs and body material can also decrease this baits effectiveness when skipping, I find the bait often trips over itself and doesn't  have the weight and density needed to get a nice skip.

Presentation: 3.0/5

I struggled with writing this portion of the review as the bait performs well on its own, but when compareid to other top water toads and popping toads it seems to be inferior. Like with the classic Zman frog I find that the use of the Elaztech material used to make the frog durable in turn hinders its performance on the water. The legs kick a little subtler then other frogs and the soft Elaztech month is not idea for popping and gives the water more of a push then a pop.

Perks to the Zman Pop?, like with other Zman products the Pop Frog Z floats when paused even when paired with larger hooks. Its long narrow body glides well when you give the rod tip a jerk and can be walked similar to a hollow body frog.

Hook-Up Ratio: 3.5/5

The Pop Frog Z  provides a decent hook-up ratio. The ultra soft and collapsible body will bend and squish in any direction, making it easy for the fish to get this whole frog in it's mouth.

The body material holds the hook well, and a back slot keeps your hook point hidden during the retrieve. If you like to rig it with a slight skin hook on the hook point be careful not to bury the hook to far in, as this material is so stretchy that it will hold the point and you wont be able to burry it home when the fish strikes

Innovation & Design: 3.0/5

Zman has always been a company at the for-front of innovation, you don't have to look to far to see that their 2 most recent innovations (the chatterbait and the Ned Rig) have taken the fishing word by storm the past few years. With that said when it comes to their frog baits the only real innovation they have is their Elaztech body material, and its place in fishing can be debated. I for one am not a fan.

Availability, Options & Price: 3.0/5

Since my last review of a Z-man product they have become much more readily available. They are easy to find at most online retailers and at local tackle shops even in the smaller markets. As for options the Pop Frog Z is only available in 4 colors and one size. The colors are pretty standard fair but most anglers should be able to find one that suits them.

As for pricing they are well priced at an average of $3.99 a pack. This sounds good off the hop but also remember that Zman ships these with only 4 frogs in a pack leaving your final price at approximately $1.00 a frog. (good thing they last)

Situations for Success:

When fishing the Zman pop frog I tend to focus on shorter targeted casts in medium to sparse cover. I feel I had the most success when fishing the Pop Frog Z at medium to high speed retrieves or when giving the bait sporadic twitches and pauses.

If you fish lakes loaded with toothy fish its also a nice bait to have in the boat to help stem the bleeding of going through pack after pack of your favorite soft plastic toad.

Where to Find:
In case you are having a hard time finding these locally, here are some reliable options for you.

Reaction Strike ($9.99)


I fished the Zman POP Frog Z on a Dobyns 734c or 735c which provides enough tip to easily cast this light weight bait as well as the power to pull fish out of cover. Try using a Diawa Tatula 150 with a 7.3:1 gear ratio and 40lb Daiwa x8 J-Braid.

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