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Kentucky Lake, Lake Barkley Fishing
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Archived Fishing Report

Dave Stewart's Fishing Report

Written by Dave Stewart | Originally published 02/02/2004

Kentucky Lake:  Water level at Ky Dam - 356.63  Surface Temperature - 43

Lake Barkley:  Water levle at Barkley Dam - 356.40  Surface Temperature - 43
 
Both lakes are about 2.5 ft over winter pool and dropping.  There has been little fishing activity reported but some Crappie anglers have been doing fair on old creek channel ledges by spider rigging small tubes over brush piles at the 12 -16 ft depths.  I have not had any reports on the bass fishing or sauger fishing.  Since I have been traveling and unable to be on the water myself I have not had the opportunity to try the Smallmouth on the float-n-fly as I did last winter but I feel sure a person could catch some nice Smallmouth with this technique around the main lake primary points on the east side of Kentucky Lake.  

The key to being successful with this technique on Ky Lake is to find the schools of shad and set your fly depth at the same depth or just under them.  Last winter the colors of blue/chartruese, white, and white/chartruese worked very well for me.  
 
It won't be long now until the early spring bite for Largemouth and Smallmouth Bass begins.  You should monitor the water temperatures and when they start to near the 50 degree range the Smallmouth will start to feed heavily on the shad along the main lake primary and secondary pea gravel points on the east side of Ky Lake. 

Suspending jerkbaits and crankbaits are the ticket for these hungry early bronzebacks.  The Largemouth will also start to feed on the main lake primary and secondary points on both lakes as well as some good fish can be taken in shallow water near wood cover on warmer days on lipless crankbaits and spinnerbaits.  The Largemouth will take the same lures as the Smallmouth on the main lake primary and secondary points with the addition of jignpig but I find that the Largemouth are more prone to be caught on the rocky points.  
 
Some of the lures I recommend for the early spring fishing are:  Lucky Craft pointers in American shad and clown, Rapala Husky jerkbaits in clown and blue/chrome/orange, Smithwick Suspending Rogues in clown and black/gold, Rapala Shadrap crankbaits in original crawdad and black/silver, Lee Sisson crankbaits in sushine craw and purple sun, Bill Lewis rattletraps in blue/chrome and black/red, Hook Some Bass spinnerbaits in white and blue/glimmer, and Hook Some Bass jigs in black and green pumpkin.  

More Kentucky Lake Fishing Reports

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If you've dug this deep in our Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley fishing reports, you are probably just itching to come down and visit the South's biggest lakes.  Get started by finding that perfect place to stay!  Find a Kentucky Lake cabin or a Lake Barkley campground, a full-service resort or a marina.  Heck, there are even dozens of hotels off the water to choose from! 

Don't have a boat?  No worries!  Bank fishing is always an option for panfish. But if you're heart is set on largemouth or smallmouth, you can rent a fishing boat at many of our local resorts!

The perfect place to start looking for a place to stay at Kentucky or Barkley Lakes?  Right here on our main lodging page.


Hoot
Photo by Susan Eizenga

If you are visiting Land Between The Lakes after dark, you are sure to hear the hoots of one of the many species of owls that can be found in this region.