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Choosing The Right Fishing Lure Is No Easy Matter

Apr 17, 2008
Walk into any tackle shop and you can find a single lure model in mind numbing array of shades and patterns. It might be said of any true fisherman that at heart they are "simple men". Given the choice most fishermen would wish that life and fishing were simple, cut and clear. However as in life, picking lures is never that simple. If it was everyone on the water, everyone on the lake would be the "king fisherman". There are just too many things that can change when it comes to fishing and the fishing gods.

However if can be said that there are some simple basics and basic principles to consider when choosing your lures for a good day or weekend with your buddies fishing on the lake.

First and foremost it's the action of the lure that counts. Lures move and attract fish - hopefully big ones. Change the color of an ugly car or truck and its still an ugly vehicle. It's the same with fishing lures. What you should consider first and foremost is what type of movement, what kind of action does a lure have to possess to interest the type of fish, and the personality and interests at the fish at that season. It's all about the fish and what interests them. Not the other way around. Color is an add on not the basic.

Next consider the clarity and condition of the water. Lure color can be critical in clear water because simply the clearer a pristine the water, the more that type of fish or fish of a given geographic area or lake, will rely primarily on vision to find their prey. If on the other hand you are fishing the muddy clay borne water of the Red River of Manitoba, water clarity is almost nil. Hence the color or colors of the lures that you pick or purchase will matter little and seldom.

It's a matter of thinking what the primary feed and forage of the fish of an area. If the water is mostly clear the first step to try are lures that match that forage. For example to mimic crayfish try brownish, crayfish shades. If its mayflies or "fishflies" then try silver or whiter shades. Again is a matter of imitating the seasons and the changes of foodstocks for the fish of the area.

However if you are fishing for bass , and the water is in between clear and muddy then light and bright light lures seem to work great. Bass especially seem to have the ability to detect motion at some distance, even in stained water. The extra colors and bright colors of a specially chosen lure may make the difference between a good bass strike, good day fishing, and one not so rewarding.

Next one should consider not only the clarity of the water itself, but in addition consider the "tint" of the water. Tint of water comes into play especially if you are fishing in shallower waters. Generally if the water has a light tint - then go for light colors. You can even range your lures into the fluorescent ranges.

Lastly it should be pointed out that even if you are doing everything correct you should take into account that given the same lure , colors , water clarity and tint visibility in the water ( and for the fish as well) depends greatly both on time of day , and angle of the sun and sunlight, and also on the weather. A cloudy day will illuminate the lake and Lake Bottom entirely differently than what occurs on a bright sunny day. All these factors come into play when choosing the best lure to catch the most fish that day and the colors for the given type of lure.

It's no accident that fishing is not the easiest sport in the world. With all the variables of water clarity, water tint, weather conditions and lighting variations in nature it is no small accident that there are no hard and fast simple rules to choosing which lure and lure colors will catch the most fish for you on that bay, river or lake.
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