Fishing the sparkling flats of south Florida, Sutton makes the most of less. In clear water, he typically throws smaller baits on 10-pound-test PowerPro with a 20-pound fluorocarbon leader. He also makes longer casts, perhaps 50 to 100 feet.
"So many people oversize their baits for redfish," Sutton says. "Unless I'm dealing with 35- to 40-inch fish, I go with small baits, 3-inch maximum, and use smaller hooks. My favorite redfish bait is the freshwater-sized Rapala Skitter Walk. I also like smaller Zara Spooks and Top Dogs."
With any topwater bait, anglers can use a variety of colors. In general, use darker colors on dark days or in dark water. On bright days, use brighter colors. In extremely clear water, use natural mullet or baitfish finishes. Some traditional hot colors include clear, chartreuse and white, red and white, black, chartreuse and orange, bone, gray and white, or green and silver.
"In muddy water, I like to use black or dark colors," Sutton recommends. "They give a much better profile in low-light conditions. With a high sun, I like to go with a chartreuse or white. Fish see that lighter bottom and think it's the belly of a wounded fish. In clear water, I use natural mullet colors, something with a black back and silver sides. I also like chrome or gold."