Favorite Smallmouth Flies/ Clouser Color

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supervdl

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I like to improve my smallmouth fly fishing success. I am curious what flies you are using and what color combination for clouser minnows? I am in NEPA and fish the Susquehanna or Delaware.
 
afishinado

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supervdl wrote:
I like to improve my smallmouth fly fishing success. I am curious what flies you are using and what color combination for clouser minnows? I am in NEPA and fish the Susquehanna or Delaware.


Chartreuse over white is most popular. I've has luck with olive over white in clearer water as well as gray over white.
 
Dave_W

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As is the case with trout streamers, for bass I tend to favor the dark day/water = dark fly and light day/clear water = a light colored fly.

And this trend is seasonal as bass rivers tend to be on the high and cloudy side during the springtime pre-spawn period. I tie most of my Clousers using a lot of black and with heavy eyes for this period when I want my flies to get down in stained water.

During the summer, I prefer my streamer flies on the lighter side as I'm casting further (wading or in a canoe) and fishing shallower. Tan, olive, and light green tones show up more in my flies in summer as crayfish and stonecats are prevalent forage. In the fall with bass focused more on baitfish but the water still on the low and clear side, I like green over white streamers with some flash.
 
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supervdl

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How you fish your streamers? Do you cast across and strip back at various speeds like you would with trout? Do you use anything other than clousers?
 
jifigz

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Use any streamer that you want. Smallmouth can be readily caught on lots of patterns.

You can cast across and strip..you can cast across and let the current carry them down along the bottom. Every piece of water and days may call for different days.

Smallmouth are easily caught year round on flies. A clouser is a good all around choice, but buggers, zonkers, etc are all effective..
 
jifigz

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Oh, and olive over white is by far the best color combo I use for smallies followed by Kelly green over white. I'm not very good of chartreuse over white, really..I'm not very fond of anything chartreuse, actually.
 
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acesedgley

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Kelly green! E A G L E S!!!
 
jifigz

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Sorry for the typos in my posts. Auto correct on my phone, ya know. But you get the idea.
 
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poopdeck

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White is always the bottom color. Favorite top colors in order, brown, light green (Kelly green), black, gray. I'm not a fan of bright colors like chartreuse, yellow, red, pink, orange and such but do keep a couple out of my ordinary colors on hand just in case. Mostly I'm fishing brown/white.

As for retrieves, I find just letting them swing works pretty dang good.
 
henrydavid

henrydavid

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I do better with wully buggers than clousers, I like to slow drift, crayfish colors.
 
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NittanyBearcat

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Olive over brown with copper krystal flash is my go to pattern for smallies.
 
Fly-Swatter

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Working the water column top to bottom...

Surface: small to medium sized gurglers - white

Shallow 1: Medium sized Murditch minnows - white (sharpie colored top, gray or tan)

Shallow 2: cone head wooly buggers - all white, olive, tan, or black

Deep 1: small to medium sized Crayfish-ish patterns in tan, brown, olive and combos of these colors

Deep 2: Clouser deep minnows - chartreuse over white or 1/4 olive over 1/4 chartreuse over 1/2 white (tri-color)

Retrieves are the same for all three: one or two strips then pause. Takes are mostly on the pause.

NOTE 1: I always have some flash on my flies, even the gurglers and especially on the minnow-imitating flies.

NOTE 2: In low water of late summer I like to fish an all white Murditch minnow so I can see the takes. Smallmouth are very aggressive when properly triggered. This means adjusting retrieves to suite the water temps and conditions. Patterns are far less important, more for angler confidence.

Depth control is also key. If you are fishing subsurface and either never hitting bottom or constantly getting hung up, change the weight of your fly. I tie so I can alter my patters like this:
1. use heavier or lighter dumbbell eyes
2. add or remove material to affect hydrodynamics.

So, whatever retrieve speed the fish want, you should have flies that get tot he appropriate depth and that changes often on the rivers and creeks.

DISCLAIMER: I am a chronic fly changer. My fishing partner changes flies rarely and it's almost always a gurgler or crayfish fly. We usually catch the same number of fish. That should give you a little hint...
 
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RLeep2

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If I'm fishing Clousers, I like the following color combinations in no particular order of preference other than to try to match them to water conditions/clarity and habitat type as seems best to me. I often don't know nearly as much as I think I do.

Red over white with silver flash, gray/smoke over white with silver or pearl flash, yellow over white and yellow over smoke with yellow and pearl flash, olive over yellow with gold or root beer flash (perch), olive over smoke with olive flash, black/black with black holographic flash. Sky blue over white or smoke with this this flash I found that is sort of blue/gray and is called mullet or mackerel or something like that.. I've never really done well enough on Clousers with a chartreuse component to gain much confidence in them.

I also tie quite a few using Steve Farrar Flash Blend in pretty much the same general run of colors and do OK on them.

All things considered though, Clousers are usually my 2nd choice in these types of flies. I seem to do better on Murray Marauders with white/pearl, black and olive being the best colors for me anyway. I like the action of the Maurader when doing the stop and go retrieve common to this fishing. The Maurader isn't a very durable fly though compared to the Clouser. I probably have a hundred of them in a pile in the basement with unwound hackle and destroyed ostrich tails, etc., that I may try to reclaim and rehabilitate some day.
 
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D-nymph

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Just a few dark brown hairs over olive over white with gold flash.
 
tomgamber

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Schenk's minnow

https://youtu.be/0jCXmgahngU

But I do like a gurgler or buggers too.

 
wgmiller

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This is a great book if you want to up your smallmouth game!

9780811719773_480x480.jpg


 
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supervdl

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Thanks for all the helpful pointers. keep them coming.
 
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