What color PowerBait is best for trout?

There is a massive range of different color powerbaits. It can be a bit overwhelming trying to decide which color to fish.

This article will share my experiences and views which will hopefully make the decision on which bait to fish a bit easier.

Which color powerbait catches the most trout?

There is no one best color of powerbait, and what works wonders one day, or in one location might be totally ignored on the next trip. Trout can be extremely confusing, fussy, and difficult to predict.

Every time I start to think I have figured out a pattern, their behavior will change leaving my theory in ruins. I honestly can not pinpoint with any certainty what triggers the trout to favor one color over the other.

I once did a little experiment, where I fished two identical rods next to each other. I will label them rod A and rod B. In the first hour or so rod A got all the attention and I was able to land 8 trout. Rod B was untouched.

Over the second hour rod B got all the attention, and I landed 6 more all except one was on rod B.

The part that confuses me the most, is that both rods were identical including the color of the bait, but for the first hour the trout had a strong preference towards rod A, while the next hour they were mostly interested in rod B. The point I was trying to make is that trout are very hard to predict at times.

Does powerbait color matter?

Yes, the color of powerbait does matter. Some days, for only reasons the trout know they strongly prefer certain colors over another. Some days, they will grab any color powerbaits, other days they will only take very specific colors. .

For example, they might prefer red in the morning, but come afternoon they will ignore the red and only take white. They can be very hard to predict at times. I also bring a selction of powerbait colors and cycle between them until I find one which works on the day.

I do believe, under certain conditions some colors are more clearly visible. For example, when fishing over dark weeds a white or bright color powerbait does stand out better. While in dirty or cloudy water a dark might provide more contrast.

How to decide which color powerbait to buy?

I suggest buying several different colors of powerbaits, and make sure they are contrasting. I think we are all familiar with the primary colors. These are the core colors that blend to form all others, they are also the colors most different from each other.

I suggest getting one representing each primary color, yellow, red and blue.

Now, Blue powerbait only exists in combination with other colors. While it is possible to separate the blue out, I usually just use a dark color such as ‘Hatchery pellet’ in its place.

I also grab a white because it represents the absence of colors.

These four powerbait colors cover all of the basics, and by mixing and managing you are maximizing the chances of finding something the trout will like.

If you want to make things even more simple, I suggest white, orange and dark.

Does Powerbait scent attract trout?

This is very controversial and I can only give a partial answer.

Fish are certainly attracted to the powerbait scent and in particular the gulp scent. Although for trout I suspect the attraction is minor because they are predominantly visual feeders.

With regards to fish in general. I have seen powerbait gulp balls laying on the bottom, without any movement and baitfish were constantly nibbling away at it. Although the trout only showed interest when it was floating in the water with a bit of movement. I have never seen fish interested in plastic baits, so the powerbait formula does attract fish.

Now, I know many powerbaits have different scents such as garlic, aniseed, and corn. I am not convinced they make a significant difference mainly because trout do not typically sniff out their food.

Let’s discuss individual colors



WhiteWhite is normally a fairly strong performer. It does contrast nicely, making it easy for the trout to see against a dark backdrop
Trout pellets also tend to be quite pale in colors, so some stock trout might confuse powerbait with pellets based on the pale color.
Powerbait is sold in several different shades of white, one is “Marshmellow white” which is very bright and visible. I personally prefer the duller “white” which is more the shade of white bread.
PinkPink quickly loses it’s color and appears pale once underwater. It loses about a third of its visibility in even 3ft of water.

In deep water, pink is very pale like off-white. That is because red is the first color to be lost when underwater and pink is already a very pale red.
In shallow water, pink is traditionally a strong performer. It resembles the color of worms and fish eggs.
Yellow (corn)
Powerbait comes in several different shades of yellow. Two of the more notable ones are a bright yellow that resembles corn, and a pale yellow almost bordering on tan. Both work well targeting recently stocked trout and I will be lying if I could say one consistently outfishes the other.

The yellow corn powerbait is very bright, some fishermen believe it catches more trout because hatchery pellets are often corn based. The more pale yellow baits, do look more like a hatchery pellet. So are likely to catch trout for similar reasons. They also feature different scents.
Chartreusechartreuse is another popular powerbait color, it kinda reminds me of the radioactive green color. It probably works for similar reasons as yellow. It is bright, and the trout can easily see it.
OrangeOrange powerbait can resemble fish eggs. Orange is a very visible color, and stands out in even discolored water.
Orange remains visible for longer than red, including at all depths we typically trout fish.
RedRed is basically a brighter pink, while pink becomes very pale within the first few yards. The brighter red powerbait maintains its visibility down to about 5 yards. If fishing deeper than 5 yards, I will seriously consider red over pink.
BlueBlue powerbait does not exist by itself, it is usually sold as part of a color combination.

Blue light penetrates very far into the water, that means blue powerbait remain blue even at extreme depths. It is very contrasty which can make it highly visible in some light conditions.

The same applies to any of blue’s hues such as purple and even dark green. Maybe they are mistaking it for the dark shell of a snail, but I suspect they take blue powerbait out of habit.
RainbowThere is a massive range of powerbait dough’s that are made up of a combination of different colors.

I fish rainbow when I just can not make up my mind on what color to try next. The multicolor balls do seem to work

Another advantage of the rainbow is that it is possible to target one of the individual colors. So if I think the trout might like chartreuse, but I do not have any with me I can steal it from the rainbow container.
Brown (Earthworm)

Earthworm color looks a lot like fish pellets, which is the diet of stock trout. This color only seems to be available as part of the Powerbait Panfish Nibbles series. Certainly worth a when targeting recently stocked trout

What are my favorite powerbaits color

I guess I should list my favorite powerbait colors. I personally like white, pink, and brown (earthworm), but I do experiment with other colors at time.

Other resources

This youtube video below is interesting to watch, it shows underwater footage of trout grabbing different color powerbaits. On that day, the trout were showing a strong preference for pink, and paler color baits.

Summary

I always suggest bringing a selection of different color powerbaits, that is because trout often have a strong preference for one color over the other. At a minimum, I like to have one pale color, one bright color, and a dark color.

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