With the snow melt and April showers, water runoff into your favorite fishing holes is a natural and necessary step in the water cycle.

Runoff recharges aquifers, raises water levels and provides the nutrients necessary for productive fisheries. For anglers, this also creates some tough fishing conditions.

Water runoff muddies up the rivers and lakes, making it extremely difficult for bass to track your baits. Try one of these three presentations when you need to draw strikes in muddy water.

Also Read 6 Classic Fishing Lures Every Angler Should Know

Creatures, Big and Loud

High muddy water causes bass to stick close to cover. With this in mind, try flipping and pitching creature baits when the water is dirty. You’ll want to make sure you’re flipping something big enough to get their attention, too, like Berkley’s Pit Boss or Gambler’s Ugly Otter. Basically, the dirtier the water is, the bigger and louder you want your flipping bait to be. It’s also smart to use a jighead with a rattle when you’re fishing dirty water; anything to add a bit more noise and commotion to your presentation.


There aren’t many baits more versatile than a spinnerbait, and that’s the main reason they can still fill your livewell when the water’s muddy. The trick to using them in muddy water is making sure you’re using the right spinnerbait for the conditions. With little to no visibility, you’ll want to go with a spinnerbait that’s makes a lot of noise, rather than one with a lot of flash. This means dark color patterns and big Colorado blades that move a lot of water.

Chat ‘Em Up

Just like a big Colorado blade spinnerbait, chatterbaits pack a ton of thump into a package small enough to fish around both shallow and deep cover. These vibrating lures can feel like they’ll shake the rod right out of your hand during the retrieve, but the commotion they create can give bass something to home in on in even the murkiest waters. Any angler worth their salt would do well to keep one or two of these beauties in their tackle box for muddy water days.

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