Fall Crappie Holding Up Well
Written by Steve McCadams | Originally published 11/08/2016
Fall fishing on Kentucky Lake had another great week of weather with above average temperatures, cloudy days and light winds. That combination produced good fishing conditions as some nice stringers of crappie have been taken. Stability has been the norm lately for anglers. Both lake levels and temperatures have stabilized, allowing patterns to hold up from week to week for both bass and crappie fishermen. When stability enters the fishing picture anglers can find fish one week in a certain area or depth range and pretty much depend on the fish to stay put by next week. Such a scenario is nice for anglers and contrasts greatly to other seasons of the year such as spring when lake levels change or cold fronts descend overnight and really toss a curve to the whole fishing picture. Lake levels this week have stayed put and still sleeping at a low ebb. TVA projects the reservoir to be in the 354.4 range at Kentucky Dam this weekend. Upstream at New Johnsonville lake levels will be in the 354.3 range. The readings are up slightly from last week at this time but the change is insignificant. Surface temperatures dropped slightly from last week and have been in the 66 to 68 degree range this week. Anglers can expect a slight fall in surface temps by early next week as cooler conditions are in the forecast for the weekend. Water color remains clear across the reservoir. Only a trace of rain has fallen in the region so no runoff has occurred. Crappie fishing has held up well as anglers chalked up another favorable week in what has been a very nice fall. Fish are coming from the 6 to 13 foot zone on a consistent basis. However, some decent numbers have also come from anglers working the deep ledges where depths of 17 to 19 feet are holding good numbers. Some anglers are using minnows or tipping jigs with minnows while other are using jigs exclusively. Popular colors have range from black/red to red/chartreuse, black/chartreuse and pink/chartreuse just to name a few. Tipping jigs with Berkley Power Bait has paid dividends as well. Most of the crappie are being caught by anglers using vertical methods and keeping the bait down in structure. Good numbers continue to be taken by anglers who are releasing a lot of small fish but finding enough keeper size ones to make the trip worthwhile. Bass anglers are landing some scattered fish but still struggling to find big numbers of bass. Some fish have been chasing shad across shallow flats and anglers are zone fishing with topwater and shallow running crankbaits and jerk baits. Some fish are relating to shallow structure and hanging around stumps and shallow crappie beds that provide a comfort zone. Covering a lot of water seems to be the requirement as boaters are tossing Rattle Traps and similar style lures and fan casting over shallow flats in hopes of locating roaming fish. A few boats are still working main lake ledges and hoping to find fish moving up on feeding sprees as they push shad over shallow portions of sandbars. Some gravel bank fishing has produced as well.
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