Lure Color Selection


Selecting the best color lure for every situation is near impossible since what the fish want is always changing. However, there are some general guidelines to follow.


Clear Water

As a general rule of thumb, the clearer the water is the lighter of a color you want to use. Why? The sun penetrates clear water better than it penetrates murky water. Many of your clear lures take advantage of sun reflection to create flashes in the water.

If you have fished a lot, You have noticed that the color of fish changes depending on water clarity. You will find light colored fish in clear water and dark colored fish in murky water.


Dirty Water

Dirty water is the opposite of clear water, you actually want to use dark colors. Why? Dark colors cast a more visible silhouette in dirty water. It isn’t uncommon to see many dark lures that use a bright tail. One popular color is rootbeer with a chartreuse tail. The rootbeer does a good job casting a silhouette and the chartreuse does a good job accentuating it.

As mentioned earlier dark water makes fish darker. A light color lure can look out of place. You will notice this in both predators and bait fish.


Weather Conditions



Weather conditions also affect color selection.  While water clarity color selection is commonly agreed upon among anglers, the effect of cloud cover and rain is debated quite frequently.

Some like to stick with the same concept as the water clarity. Rain and cloud cover have less sun light which means use darker colors.

Others believe that bright colors work best during these conditions, especially in rain. The theory here is that the water is churned up and visibility is low. Since the water is churned up the silhouette will be decreased anyway, so you might as well try a brighter color to stand out.


What if I am wrong?

It’s near impossible to right 100% of the time. Many anglers have a comfort zone of 3-4 colors that work well for them. While they are probably pretty successful with those colors on a normal basis, it does not mean that is the absolute best color for that particular circumstance.

It is best to experiment with different colors to an extent every time you fish. There is a fine line between confidence and experimenting and that is something every angler needs to find. It wouldn’t be a bad idea to bookmark this page as a guide.


Helpful Resources

Fishing Lure Selector Tool
Click above to access the tool. This tool generates best color combination for each specific condition. There a lot of different variables with this tool and it’s definitely worth checking out.






BCIF is based out of Brevard County, Florida. BCIF provides fishing reports, fishing tips, videos, pictures and more. We encourage you to join in our community and post on our pages and forums

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