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October 2020

Fishing Topwater Lures - James Niggemeyer's Rules of Thumb

James Niggemeyer explains the conditions that lead him to choose the KVD Sexy Dawg or the KVD Splash to chase topwater bites.

I love to throw topwaters, just like everyone else. Two of my favorites are the Strike King Sexy Dawg and the KVD Splash. Whenever I’m out there and I feel like there might be a topwater bite, I’m going to have both of these at the ready.

There are some guidelines on which lure, the Sexy Dawg or the Splash, I’ll choose to throw and when I’ll throw them. It mostly depends on the weather.

Sunny Day

If it’s a brighter day where the fish are tighter to cover and not wanting to leave that cover to chase a bait, then I’ll select the KVD Splash. This is a bait that I’ll throw near where a fish will be, and I’ll chug it. Pop-pop-pop, pause, pop-pop-pop, pause.

The concave mouth spits some water, and it enables me to work the bait in shorter, smaller strike zones when the fish do not want to come for a bait. This is my sniper-style bait when I know where a fish will be. That’s when I reach for the Splash, generally.

Cloudy Day

If it’s overcast, or the fish are aggressive and wanting to chase something, then I’ll reach for a Sexy Dawg. I work this bait with the walk-the-dog cadenceright then left in a steady pattern. It can be difficult to find the rod rhythm, but once you get the Sexy Dawg going with the rattle in it, the directional change can yield some explosive strikes. When the fish are willing to leave cover to get the bait, that’s when I go for the Sexy Dawg.