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Must have colors

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I have been shuffling through my catalogs trying to get ready for this seasons fishing.Now I want one of everything in every color pattern but I just don't think my budget will allow it(or my wife)If you had to pick just three color patterns to do the best to cover most water conditions what would they be?

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Black/black, pink/yellow, white/white.

Those are my minimums...However a little purple in the box helps quite a bit.


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You need to be more specific on type of lures and for which species. For example, in days of yore, I sought northern at every chance I had (I lived in Missouri then, and we didn't have them there). Why, I do not know, but red/white Dardevle would always out fish the same lure in black/white -- yet, today I use black in most other types of lures much more than red -- contemporary exception being steelhead.

The old argument of fish being color blind has long since been refuted -- by on the water experience for guys like us, and by controlled lab experiments by scientists.

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I was intentionally vague to get more responses for all species.And to let this thread go where it may.I also don't want to limit it to just one type of lure becuase we use all types of lure for the same species.
I know that certain species favor certain colors.For example I have never used pink when targeting walleyes but when fishing for crappies I would not be with out it.
I am also looking for the visibility factor.
I understand that in certain water colors,clarities certain colors are more visible.In turbid water(the water I fish most)I stock up on high frequency colors like neon yellow,flo orange,flo red.
When fishing clear water I typically go with natural colors or patterns,(perch shad)Stained water I usually go with golds and and low frequency reds.
Deep water(30ft+)I typically don't fish because of mortality rates but if I did I would use something with light blue on it.Why do I go with these colors?,it just because I have either had luck with these or have read that these are colors to use in these conditions.What have your experiances been?
I have fished certain lakes also where a specific color seems to be the best.Such as on more than one occasion fishing on Leech the only way to get pike was to use a lure that was mostly flo red.It didn't even matter what kind of lure,just that it was flo red.
On Vermillion I have seen where size and action was a key also,but without a specific color pattern those were useless.
I am just trying to get a discussion going on colors/patterns and the best applications for them.
So what are your "go to" patterns/colors for your favorite species in various water conditions?

[This message has been edited by fishhead (edited 03-24-2002).]

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Boy oh boy,
Where to start,
Maybe I will shoot by species:
Bass: Jigs, black,black-chartreuse,black-red
Cranks, crawfish,silver,chartreuse
Spinnerbaits, white,yellow,black-orange
Panfish: white,chartreuse,pink

Walleye: spinners, chartreuse,red-white,hammered silver
cranks, silver-black,firetiger,crawfish
hooks, just the bleeding red.

Northerns: red & black, silver, white.
(all lures in this combo)

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Hi Guys,
Color choices, can vary even between anglers on the same body of water. If
only one pattern was catching fish the
number of successful anglers would be
mush less.

Muskytom and I both fish Vermilion and we both have success. I throw alot of the bright colors like firetiger, red, pink, white, and chartruce.

Tom on the other hand, throws alot of
natural colors and is very successful
with them. He has convidence in that
pattern and it works for him.
What I'm getting at is, color is more of a convidence thing for the angler. It you believe in it, use it!

I believe in certain colors and those are the ones that I throw the most. I in turn, catch more fish on those colors, than I do on colors I use less often. smile.gif

So no matter what the reason is, if you believe in a color use it. Convidence in your presentation is a big factor, in becoming a successful angler.

Terry Sjoberg
Ace guide service.
Beautiful Lake Vermilion.

[This message has been edited by guideman (edited 03-24-2002).]

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On a specific lake for patterns on Crappies: Tea colored water;

For three weeks after ice out: white on white

Spawn through June: Pink on Yellow

July through October: pink on chartreus; black.

For clear water on constantly use white/white and black/black, and pink/white.

For dark water: Pink/yellow, Orange.

Winter I consistently use glow jigs and ratfinkie jigs...Colors include purple, pink, black, and graphite.

Some best success for finicky fish comes on a plain hook with a sinker crimped to it. I use this as a "strike" lure. That means that even if I detect no hit from the fish, I automatically set the hook when the signals meet on the locator. Teardrop shaped glow jigs also work excellent for this method.

In the winter I seldom stray from Maggots. They work well and are easier to keep then minnows. They also seem to trigger a quicker bite then to let a fish "take" a minnow.

In the spring/early summer I use Crappie minnows tipped on feather jigs. This is about the only time I use bobbers. Adjust-A-Bubble.

July through October I use plain 1/32 oz. maribue jigs free casting in open water.

I have never used different colors for different depths. I have found on certain lake that different colors trigger different size fish though. Also, at certain times, different jigging techniques bring in different size fish also.

For example: plain hook on minnow suspended under small float = 1/2-10oz Crappies consistantly.

Vertical jigging with feather jigs and wax worms = 1lb and better Crappies consistantly on the same lake at the same time on the same spot.
Different size fish are attracted to different baits and actions at certain times.

Just a few patterns I use on a regualr basis.

thanks much and good fishing!


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My confidence colors that always seem start on the line are;
Walleyes = gold or orange
Crappies = white or pink "glow"
Muskies = Black

Of course all other colors are patiently waiting their turn in the tackle box, but the most battle scars are on the colors mentioned above " my bread and butter colors"


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