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dark water. dark or bright flies?


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Poll: in dark water do you use dark colored flies or bright colored flies? (160 member(s) have cast votes)

dark flies? bright flies?

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#16 BeginnerFlyTyer

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Posted 13 February 2011 - 10:35 PM

Use black it is easy to see in brown stained water.

#17 notenuftoys

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Posted 14 February 2011 - 12:55 AM

On our local lakes, for largemouth bass, I've found purple works best. I'm not sure the advantage of purple over black, but that's just what the local fish seem to prefer. So I'll serve it to them!

#18 4 chris B

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Posted 14 February 2011 - 01:07 AM

I've always gone dark... use the same principle with the sky and fly choice...
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#19 morepower210

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Posted 17 February 2011 - 02:10 PM

We have reddish colored water where I fish. White is very effective as well as black/pumpkin. I tie and carry a lot of both because I've had fish change on an hourly basis.

#20 flymanaj

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Posted 17 February 2011 - 07:45 PM

Really depends on the species for me, for trout you can't go wrong with a solid black wooly bugger. For panfish and bass, bright colors may become a larger part of the equation. headbang.gif

#21 Goats

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Posted 19 March 2014 - 12:27 PM

I think it boils down to what is making the water color the color it is. The forage in a particular body of water adapts to the vegetation, bottom type, geology, flow, and contaminants. Muddy run off water in a generally clear lake, early season in sandy bottomed lake with seasonal vegetation blooms, rocky bottoms with changing flows and water conditions, etc I think most of the posters of touched on this aspect but knowing the body of water is the best start. I fish areas of Lake St. Clair in which the bottom is a light colored silt with pockets of vegetation, shallow water with some small deep runs. Weather, water clarity, season, specie, forage and just about every other variable imagined impacts my success choosing colors. I like to keep a journal recording the constants and the variables and then look for consistencies in the data......ah heck who am I kidding, I burn through more tippet tying on everything in my box until something works. 



#22 Piker20

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Posted 19 March 2014 - 02:28 PM

Peaty stained water does seem to produce well to anything yellow orange red combos. Add bit more black if clearer. But more colour if murky. Water with colour from snow melt, so a greeny/blue stain seem to produce to blue green purple combos.
Claret works everywhere.
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#23 fshrmanms

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Posted 20 March 2014 - 10:22 AM

trial and error but tend to go more by time of day, dark for low light, and brighter colors during brighter hours



#24 SILKHDH

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Posted 10 April 2014 - 12:42 PM


I suggest you google Dr. Loren Hill, Color selector and read what he has to say. This man did years of study on color and water clarity and what bass see better. If color is the question, he would be the expert. I have one, and have read some articles on the tests he did. was pretty interesting. One thing though, this was tested with bass. So if other fish see different color spectrums them you got another question. I will say, dark water = dark lures and fluorescent. Has a always been a good rule to follow.

#25 flyfisher76544

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Posted 04 June 2014 - 08:02 AM

Dark water usually means we throw darker colored flies. There is a lot of water around us that is tannic from all the cypress and tupelo trees. The fish will even be a darker color as well. Muddy or stained water is where we go with lighter colors. Here its black, brown or olive that seems to produce the best.


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