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I did my homework this weekend, I watched both Bassmaster and FLW outdoors. Now help me figure this out, on Bassmaster they were fishing Table Rock Lake in Missouri, a clear lake, the leaders were searching for patches of dirty water to find their fish. According to the experts, the fish are more aggressive in dirty water.

Now on FLW on Atchafayla Basin, which is mostly dirty water, the leaders were searching for clean water. I don't get it, why would this be?

Also, is the dirty water thing applicable to Lake St. Clair, I have often heard how guys from the club struck out running to the south shore of Canada on a day that had a strong north wind. Would the fish by more aggressive to a spinnerbait giving off vibration or say a rattling crankbait versus dragging a tube? Thanks for your thoughts.
 

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One thing for certain in fishing is that there are no steadfast rules (except the laws set by the DNR and even they are open foe argument)

I like clearer water.....the guys down south usually like muddy to stained water. It all depends on where youa re fishing....

Mini
 

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i like dirty water if its warm. when the water is dirty the fish usually hold very tight to cover, so it makes them easier to target.

when the water is clear and the temps arent freezing the fish move around a lot more. you have to work harder to find them i m o.

as far as the guys in clear water looking for dirty water, and the guys in dirty looking for clear it all reminds me of the canadian bass guys coming over here to fish and the americans going over to canada to fish on lake st clair.

ill take any water. i just want to fish.

madman himself
 

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I didn't see either show, but probably what they were doing was looking for something different.

Generally speaking dirty water on St. Clair/Erie is bad for smallies. Smallies are primarily sight feeders. You don't want to be fishing an area that has miles of dirty water. Now that being said, if you find a patch or dirty water with clear around it (or vice versa), that's something different. Smallies will take advantage of it and use it to ambush prey.

More than once I've found smallies hanging out in a patch of the nastiest stuff you could find. Cleaner water was within casting distance every time but they were in the nasty stuff (not on the scum line either). My guess is they were having a field day on bait trying to use it as cover. As mini said there are no "steadfast rules", but generally speaking you want to be fishing clean water for smallies.
 

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... just to confuse the issue. Dirty water will hold heat better than clear water. In the spring this could be a factor. Which may explain why they were hunting for stained water at Table Rock...
 

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Here is my 2-cents!

Bass seem to find the cover that is the exception in any lake! Some Examples!

Mississippi river has stump fields everywhere! So many that you can't hardly decide which to fish! You can fish thousands of them and only get one or two bites! What I learned was that any stump that had a slight angle to it's position held fish! Once we figured it out we just targeted those stumps.

Lake Orion is filled with weed lines! The entire lake looks like it will hold fish! My best success has come on isolated patches of green cabbage weeds close to deep water!

I have fished Table Rock quite a bit! Most of the lake is extremely clear water! We used to search for "off color" water! Not really "dirty water"! The fish using these areas tend to be less spooky to the bait, line, shadows etc! These fish are more likely to be enticed into biting!

Lake Erie last spring when we filmed the Outdoor World Tv segiments! The main lake was clear and the shorelines dirty. We had a tough time getting consistent action until we found some stained water! Whamo! Big fish all day! Those fish are less spooky but still have enough good visibility to keep a large strike zone!

Sometimes I think it's like giving a fish a cloudy day versus bright sunshine!

I guess my theory is if it's diffent from the norm bass will find a way to use it!
 

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QUOTE(Bass Pro @ Mar 15 2004, 06:36 PM)Lake Erie last spring when we filmed the Outdoor World Tv segiments! The main lake was clear and the shorelines dirty. We had a tough time getting consistent action until we found some stained water! Whamo! Big fish all day! Those fish are less spooky but still have enough good visibility to keep a large strike zone!
Agree 100%.

One more for you and you'll be an expert Eric. You can always blame the water clarity (too clear/too stained) when your not catching them. Gives you another excuse at the ramp to go along with the wind, sunlight, etc.
 

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70% of bass fishing (especially competitively) is lining up an appropriate number of excuses in case things don't go the way you hoped!!!
 

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Dirty and clear mean different things to Northern anglers verses Southern anglers too.

Some of the clear water we have up here is what they consider drinking water down there, not fishing water. Some of what they consider dirty, we would call mud.

A lot of it has to do with what anglers are comfortable with besides what the others have said above.
 

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The reason being is that on Table Rock at this time of year, the dirty water is warmer. The warmer water is the draw that helps congregate the fish. The fish are more active in the warmer water as well. That is why on table Rock the pro's headed for the dirty water.

However on the Atchafalaya Basin the water temp is plenty warm enough throught the lake for the fish to be active just about anywhere. In this case the Pro's seek the clearer water. The clearer water provides a larger strike zone for the fish. When all things are equal, on a lake that is generaly stained water such as the Atchafalaya Basin , clearer water is always a positive.
 

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QUOTE(djkimmel @ Mar 15 2004, 10:31 PM)70% of bass fishing (especially competitively) is lining up an appropriate number of excuses in case things don't go the way you hoped!!!

70% !!??? Holy @#$...I need to come up with more excuses!!!!...I put WAAAYYY too much blame on myself!!
 

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I have always read that nothern lakes all have "clean water" That there is no such thing in Michigan. So I would think that unless you are going down south fishing, this doesn't apply on Lake St.Clair
 

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I told you Mac that your my hero as far as Bass fishing goes. Mini us a close second the only reason he's not first is because he beat me bad and I hold a gruge. As far as the water goes I feel clear is much better for Smallies than dirty but some days there is no choice. Dirty water does warm faster than clear but fishing is usually better in clean water. Like everything else there are no set rules. So just fish and it won't be long now. Good fishing All. Bob
 

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Dirty water irritates fish gills. Kinda like a smoke filled room.
Clean water is kinda like nice fresh air.

h2o<--says clean water makes a bigger strike zone.
 

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Northern lakes all have clean water? Go fish Belleville from July until October...that lake blows away the "all northern water is clean" theory...I've also seen some really dirty water on St. Clair, the River and Erie....
 
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