Narrowing down crankbait color choices this open-water fishing season
Crankbaits on the marketplace cover every conceivable color of the rainbow… and then some. Yet I’m amazed at how many writers and fishing experts downplay the color factor on these lures. Don’t take crankbait color for granted! We live in a technologically advanced society that can deliver so many designs and features. Take advantage of them.
When choosing a crankbait for a situation, first consider the amount of light entering the water. Weather, water clarity, and water color all influence these light and darkness factors. In clearer water, fish can see better so they’re going to demand more realistic natural colors like shad or perch. And we’re trying to match those food source colors.
In low light conditions, I’m sticking with darker colors, which provide more of a silhouette. Maybe grab one of those cranks with a red or orange underbelly for a more aggressive bite. We’re trying to match food sources with bass, or any other species we’re targeting. In lakes where gizzard shad are a major food source, use an appropriate crankbait. On other lakes, bass are feeding on sunfish and crappies, so match those food sources.
Be willing to switch colors regularly, too, as well as vary your vibration and retrieve speed. You have a tackle box full of big, beautiful cranks, so use them!
The reflection or sheen of your crankbait is an important factor, too. High-gloss and gold is for a more aggressive approach in stained water. Other lures are almost a goldish, shiny-like finish on a car. Use those with no gloss, an almost matted finish, for inactive fish or clear water.
Scales or stripes on the side of a crankbait can reduce the reflection. If I’m fishing neutral fish, that’s a logical choice.
Some guys will take a marker to enhance color patterns. You can even buy lure pens to customize lure color.
Having success with a crank while trolling? Duplicate your speed, vibration, and color and pound that spot. Don’t just keep on trucking while trolling crankbaits.
So often we hear colors and designs exist to fool or attract the fishermen. Not true! They’re for targeting fish in every conceivable mood, and they work.