Top 5 Crankbait Colors By Season

Top 5 Crankbait Colors By Season

September 28, 2020

Crankbaits are great bass fishing lures all year! I have caught all species of bass on them from coast to coast in all types of water conditions. With the focus on this blog being on crankbait colors, let me just say that the vibration of the bait and size are more important that color. Color is a big factor but like soft plastics, it is a multiplier. That means that when you add in the right color to the right vibration and size bait, you will multiply the number of bites you get.


  1. Spring Craw – This might be the most obvious choice based on the name but it was named after fishing the color for many years, not the other way. The dark brown back with red shoulders that yields into a natural orangish yellow is very much a reaction, crawfish color. It works in any stained or slightly stained water before the bass spawn.
  2. Delta Craw – This is basically a black back with a red craw pattern on the side with an orange type belly. It works all over the country in that pre-spawn time frame as well. For many anglers, it is the #1 spring color.
  3. Chartreuse Black Back – I have had some great pre-spawn, stained water days on this color. It is just one that I always have to have around for shallow cranking.
  4. Homemade Shad – This is a realistic shad color with lots of flash. Once the bass start to spawn, so do the shad and alewives. The extra flash of this color becomes a deal in the late spring.


  1. Cell Mate – The shad colors become the entire deal after the bass spawn because that is what the bass are mainly feeding on. I have caught so many bass on the Cell Mate color during the summer, you might not believe the actual number if I knew it.
  2. Citrus Chad – This is the super bright shad color that is a must have for slightly stained waters and low light conditions, especially with a deep crankbait.
  3. Spooky Nasty – This is a ghost version of a Nasty Shad or Sexy Shad color. It has a blue glimmer sheen to it. It is amazing in clear water during the summer.
  4. Homemade Shad – Here it is again. I just love this realistic shad color with the flash scales on the sides.


  1. Chrome Olive – This flashy shad color can do well in the summer too but it really starts to shine in the fall. Shallow and medium diving cranks are needed to have this color in the fall.
  2. Spooky Nasty – This color is back in the fall because it is one of the times that I have seen it out fish the same bait in other shad colors.
  3. Citrus Shad – There are many time this will work in water clearer than you think in the fall. There is something about that flash and bright color that makes those bass react to it this time of year.
  4. Homemade Shad – The realistic flash is back again. I have also roasted them in the fall on this color ever since we released it with SPRO.


  1. Cell Mate – Many of the shad get bleached out in the winter so this shad color produces well. Nasty Shad is a good substitute for the #1 slot.
  2. Blood Craw – This color only comes in the Little John, but I really like that clear, dark red color in the winter, especially in water that is clearer.
  3. Green Pumpkin – I like this color in the winter and in the clear water in spring. It is a great subtle color that has enough orange on the belly that it gets them to react.
  4. Delta Craw – This is a very bright orange and red based color. I think that bright red gets a reaction out of bass in winter time. It will also work through the spring until the bass get on beds.
By all means, these are not the only color crankbaits that work. These are just some of my favorites by season. I have seen about any color crankbait work at any time of year. The point is to try different colors until you know you have it dialed in. Crankbaits have some beautiful paint jobs but you are just looking for the right color to multiply your number of bites.