what color spinnerbait to use in clear water
Another approach to water clarity is using fluorescent and bright colored baits for muddy water and switching to lighter colors in clear, warm water. A numbering system starting from #00 (smallest) to #8 (largest) is used. In response, Mark Hildebrandt began experimenting with alternative metals. "Spinnerbaits with a mix of blue, green, and chartreuse in the skirt imitate sunfish well. And Clunn's concept was no different. Together, we formed the first "graded" silicone skirts (from dark to light). Each bass spinnerbait setup has a silicone or rubber skirt. And that it was, as Clunn went on to claim his second U.S. Open title using the technique. Luckily for me, though, a buddy of mine shared a concept he learned while observing Rick Clunn as he won the U.S. Open on Lake Mead in Nevada. Clunn could see the bass relating to these isolated bushes, and in many cases, they could see him. Most were made by jig makers, so they incorporated a typical jighead profile with an added wire frame to support the blades. It breaks up surface tension, which refracts light that can disorient baitfish — and it can create current, which in turn can position bass that are in the mood to feed. When they're in the mood to feed — like on blustery, low-sky days — they'll often position themselves higher in the water column. It was so cool watching those big brown missiles sky upward to crash the bait. (Photo: wired2fish.com) Although bass fishing with spinnerbaits is often considered most operative throughout the spring and fall, the effectiveness doesn’t stop there. And that's almost always a good thing! That first fish should give you the correct rate of retrieve for others to follow. Add a trailer hook - Use a trailer hook when practical to increase hookup percentages with short-strikers. When you think about how he was able to fool those fish in such calm, clear water by using an abstract lure like a spinnerbait, it's pretty amazing. My friend, Chris Christian, served as a press observer in that event and he told me how he was blown away by Clunn's ability to fool fish with such an abstract lure in water that clear — fish that were, at least in some instances, aware of his presence. Since that time, Clunn's concept has helped me on many other occasions. Spinnerbaits. The darker the lure color the better, as they tend to stand out in water that has low visibility. 3/4 to 1 ounce and larger; stained or muddy water; fishing deep, 10-15' or greater; fishing at night; 3/8 ounce and smaller; clear water in daylight; shallow clear water during night; clear nights with bright moon; Color Stick to colors such as green pumpkin, watermelon and root beer in clear water and change to a june-bug or black/blue combination in stained or dirty water. It was the Canadian Open, and a large contingency of American anglers had entered the event. JOIN TODAY! Like Clunn, I targeted isolated cover, such as cypress stumps, lily pads and patchy hydrilla. Factoring this, I always try to make the wind work to my advantage. In each issue I profiled a top touring pro with his best technique, and one of my featured anglers was Rick Clunn on — you guessed it — "Clear-Water Spinnerbaits.". Obviously, in shallow grass beds you can see key targets — but what about deeper, submerged grass? To this day, "The Blade" continues to outperform other spinnerbaits in ultra-clear water, particularly when grass is involved. For clear water or sunny days, I will typically use a white bait. Keep in mind that Lake Mead is a desert impoundment and visible cover is scarce, especially at low water levels. Like any concept, there are individual components that make up the whole — parts and pieces that work together to complete the puzzle. What color lure to use? Flash is most important in clear water because in that situation, bass mostly use their vision to feed. When Clunn first realized his clear-water technique, spinnerbaits were pretty basic in design. In the warmer months whenever I fish a clear-water lake I will usually start out in the morning with a dark-colored spinnerbait, but I’ll only use it for a little while. Last time, we discussed Rick Clunn's concept for fishing spinnerbaits in ultra-clear water, and how he targeted bass holding on isolated bushes — bass that, in some instances, were aware of his presence. The spinnerbait, on the other hand, offered the element of surprise — it could race through the strike zone with stealth, and the fish simply couldn’t resist it. By keeping the bait high in the water column at a brisk rate of speed, I could force those fish to reveal themselves. My first real success using Clunn's concept came on the clear waters of Lake Ontario in 1990. Sounds a bit dramatic, I know, but bait color has been probably one of the most-asked questions I get from emails, at sport shows, in tackle shops and wandering the bank among fellow anglers. That's when they put me in touch with their skirt supplier, Bubba Robinson at Rat Trap Bait Company. If fishing muddy or stained water stick with a chartreuse/white, all white or black/blue combination. Hopefully this information will help you next time you're on the water. Skirt colors are usually matched to the forage at the time of year and to the water conditions. Membership Includes 1 Year Bassmaster Magazine, Plus $50 in free gear. The Strike King KVD Spinnerbait is slightly undersized to attract finicky bass and features a flowing skirt that’s available in a variety of natural color patterns. Even though they couldn’t see it, through sonic vibrations they sensed its presence. As time passed, I learned I could make the same approach work on larger targets, like fields of aquatic vegetation — both submerged and emergent. If current is present, chances are the bass will be facing into it. Few, if any, had true lifelike attributes or the cosmetics to match live baitfish. Buying the best one, especially for the unaccustomed, can prove a little intimidating. The year was 1986, and Clunn's winning pattern involved the use of a spinnerbait in calm, clear water conditions. In order to be successful, his presentation had to be spot on. I spent months applying his clear-water spinnerbait strategy, and it worked as if I had read the instructions from a manual. Two spinnerbaits for waking Strike King The Burner After learning of Clunn's exploits, I spent months applying his strategies on my home waters in Florida, eventually building confidence in his approach. Twin Willow style blades and a super-sharp hook round out the package. The water was clear and the bite was steady, so long as I maintained the right casting angles and rate of retrieve. In Florida, we have tons of clear water. Bass seem to love the color, and it looks natural in the water. You can read the date on a coin in ten feet of water! This action often triggers a massive feeding instinct because it resembles a school of baitfish. On most spinnerbaits you can switch blades to achieve different combinations of size, color, flash, vibration, and depth. These blades are best used in clearer water. If you've never seen Lake Mead, trust me, it is ultra clear. Instead of fighting it with the trolling motor, I use a downwind approach, relying more on a driftsock or my Power-Poles to maintain stealth through a controlled drift. To fool them, I had to use super-long casts and burn the spinnerbait right under the surface. Chartreuse is simply a fancy word for greenish yellow color that is often just yellow looking but anglers get bent out of shape if you call it yellow. On cloudy days or in dirty water I lean more towards darker colored baits such as black and blue. Fish caught on a certain lure style or color encourages other anglers to try the same combination. While this was going on, an initiative to ban lead had gone public. Ten-plus pounds — the double-digit — is what most would call the undisputed benchmark of a trophy largemouth. Size - What size of of spinnerbait to use will be determined by water color and the depth where bass are located. For perch, green with a bit of black and a touch of red and white works. Fluke. The skirt color along with the two willow blades make this spinnerbait a great choice for clear water and it will be even better on a sunny day. Next time we'll discuss how Clunn's concept applies to aquatic vegetation. Few, if any, had true lifelike attributes or the cosmetics to match live baitfish. And that's when Clunn's element of surprise kicks in. On sunny days or in clear water, I will most often use silver blades. Knowing Hildebrandt's reputation for quality, I eagerly accepted. You see, when I began my career as a pro angler, spinnerbaits were considered tools for stained to muddy water conditions. What Spinnerbait to Use When and Where July 25, 2019 As part of the Jason Christie designed Booyah Covert series spinnerbaits, they have come out with this chart to help anglers know what spinnerbaits to use, where to use them, and when to use … For instance, one of the clearest waters I ever fished was a sprawling meadow lake only six feet at its deepest, covered with aquatic grass that filtered and purified the sweet water. After learning of Clunn's exploits, I was eager to apply the concept to the lakes and rivers I was fishing. I based the color selection primarily on the forage fish bass chase most — shad, shiners, alewives and bluegill. Keep in mind that Lake Mead is a desert impoundment and visible cover is scarce, especially at low water levels. Color Patterns That Work. And Clunn's concept was no different. My series was called "Techniques Illustrated." Clear water is where you find it and clear water spinnerbaits are whichever get bit best. In clear water, use natural colors like greens, browns or oranges to entice bass.� So how he was able to coax them into biting a spinnerbait is nothing short of amazing. Kill it - Killing the spinnerbait and letting it fall a couple of feet next to bushes and boulders will sometimes draw strikes from fish that are reluctant to chase. Eventually I came up with a design I liked — one that could fool fish consistently. One day, by happenstance, a factory rep saw what I was working on and asked if he could show one of my prototypes to the people at Hildebrandt. The best spinnerbaits for these conditions will have big single or double Colorado blades, and bright skirt colors like chartreuse, red, or fire tiger. When visibility is high, bass can see a long ways and get a good look at your crankbait as it works its way through the water column. And that's precisely what triggered the bass to strike. The small blades (3.5 and 4.0) make it perfect for slow rolling or burning through the water column, and extra fine silicone skirts along with sexy paint jobs complete the presentation. Other than the fish having more cover to hide in, everything else was essentially the same. anyone know what color spinnerbait wouold work in crystal clear water i mean 30 feet + almost or if they would even work??? I found the largemouth relating to isolated clumps of milfoil in the middle of a large, shallow bay. Anatomy of a Clear-Water Spinnerbait. Another great option in clear water is a white or white/chartreuse spinnerbait with willow leaf blades that is burned with a 6 or 7 to 1 gear ratio baitcaster just below the surface. Clunn discovered that by utilizing the cover to conceal his lure throughout most of the retrieve, he could make the fish bite almost at will. In fact there were more than twenty Bassmaster Classic qualifiers there, including Denny Brauer, Joe Thomas, Randall Romig, Tom Mann Jr., Rick Lillegard, Jerry Rhyne and others. Once complete, my spinnerbait design finally entered production and was named "The Blade." The spinnerbait was a chartreuse with brown and 2 gold willow leaf blades. After some deliberation, I agreed. As with isolated targets, keep the rate of retrieve brisk and above the fish. Combining a natural color with a bait with more movement can be a deadly combination. Sure, there were exceptions. “If you take a black and white photo of one, it basically looks grey-white or pearl-white.” He reasoned that when fished properly under low-light situations or early in the morning, a bass needs to view that spinnerbait as white. Clear Water Crankbait Color Selection. But that was pretty much the norm. Track the lure well above them, slowing the retrieve speed only until you connect with the first fish. It all comes down to presentation — that, and having just the right spinnerbait. As mentioned above it is often best to use spinnerbaits in color schemes resembling the major types of bass forage present in the clear water lake or river you’re fishing. Clunn did try other lures. The other option for painted blades is a color pattern that imitates specific types of forage (like a Sexy Shad or Blue Back Herring pattern). But according to what he told Christian, if the fish had ample time to study those lures, they would lose interest. When the spinnerbait would finally come into view, then zip away elusively at a high rate of speed, they would chase it down nearly every time. Really the only time they were ever applied to clear water was when the cover was thick or the skies were overcast and breezy. The key was determining the fish's position as it related to the cover, then planning his cast so that the spinnerbait would remain concealed until it reached the target. Like any concept, there are individual components that make up the whole — parts and pieces that work together to complete the puzzle. 3. I was there serving as an instructor, and one of my seminar topics was titled "Clear-Water Spinnerbaits," a subject that's very near and dear to me. It is a standard color for soft plastic lizards, finesse worms, and other worms. A few months later, I won the (FLW) Golden Blend Diamond Invitational using the same patterns. Is the top question on an angler’s mind. Then with stained water use something in-between. Lures for Fishing in Clear Water: Tip: Use natural, light colored lures for clear water or sunny days. Seeing an opportunity, I got busy developing a head design that closely matched the forage fish bass feed on. Another plus with wind is that it can give grass a grain, creating casting lanes in thicker areas — places that would otherwise be inaccessible, even for a spinnerbait. By targeting these small alleyways, I can put a moving lure where others usually won't try. His discovery began with bass relating to isolated targets, in this case scattered bushes. In clear water, fish are going to be feeding more by sight than any other sense. thanks The smallmouth, on the other hand, were cruising over shallow main lake shoals in less than ten feet of water. Why not another lure, you ask? So how he was able to coax them into … I believe the bass can see a bright color farther away, which causes a reaction strike when it is retrieved quickly. But that said, you don’t want a bass to get a good look at a spinnerbait because of how unnatural they appear. If you are in dirty water, use baits that push and create more movement. I want to dispel some of the controversy about bait color, not add to them. So finding situations for the technique wasn't at all difficult. We tried several, but nothing could compete with tin. Blade sizes are arbitrary; that is, a #3 Colorado is not the same size as a #3 Willow Leaf. And that's what set them up for its appearance. Spinnerbait Buying Guide. Anything that looked like it could hold a fish, I threw at it. In clear water use more natural subtle presentations and colors. Typically these color schemes mimic baitfish such as shad, herring, alewives, shiners, chubs, bluegills or perch. Although more costly and difficult to work with, we knew it was the answer. Soon after, the company wanted to market my design. There’s a great chance that as you’re reading this article, despite the now-infamous “Polar Vortex” wreaking havoc on much of the country, an insane spinnerbait bite is being largely overlooked on your favorite fishery. Canada's best also showed up. Often a local preference develops due to watercolor, predominant forage, or angler use. Most were made by jig makers, so they incorporated a typical jighead profile with an added wire frame to support the blades. Remember to keep an open mind. Breaking them down by their key features can help you better distinguish them from other popular bass fishing lures. One element that always seems to improve the pattern is wind. I wanted a fish-head profile with eyes and pronounced gills and one that was slender, so that it would pass through grass more easily. All you want them to see is flash and movement. In a field of grass, the spinnerbait is obscured throughout much of the retrieve. In that event, I targeted both largemouth and smallmouth. Just ask Rick Clunn! Why is wind so important? This simple guideline is also what I follow when selecting blade colors. Spinnerbaits, given their multiform use in different conditions and waters, come in varying shapes and sizes. Knowing this, I always try to concentrate on the windier banks or edges of grass beds. With all of these things coming together, it was merely a matter of configuring the various blade combinations. Membership Includes 1 Year Bassmaster Magazine, Plus $50 in free gear. Black and blue is one of my all-time favorite color combinations to use in muddy water. Black and blue is a very popular and effective muddy water color and is a great option for soft plastics, top water lures, spinnerbait and chatterbaits.
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