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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 03/12/2009

Kentucky Lake:  Water Level at Ky Dam - 354.67  Surface Temperature - 52

Lake Barkley:  Water Level at Barkley Dam - 354.70  Surface Temperature - 52
 
Both lakes are about one half foot over winter pool.  This reflects a drop of 1.5 ft in water levels over the past week.  The water temperatures have risen significantly (6 degrees) over the past week with above normal temperatures and warm south winds.  This warming of the waters really turned on the early prespawn Largemouth and some very good catches were reported this past week.  

Crappie anglers also reported an increase in numbers.  Now for the bad news, we have a harsh cold front coming through the lakes area today with rain, sleet and snow.  Highs today will be around the freezing mark. Better news is that a  warming trend is forecasted for Friday thru Sunday along with the chance of rain.  Highs Friday are forecasted to be in the 40's, Saturday in the low 50's and Sunday in the mid 50's.  The extended forecast for next week looks good right now with highs in the 60's and lows in the 40's.  If this extended forecast holds, I expect the fishing next week to be overall pretty good.  
 
Largemouth Bass:  Largemouth Bass are being taken on main lake primary and secondary points as well as secondary points and creek channel banks inside the creeks and bays.  These fish are being taken on suspending jerkbaits, slow rolled medium running crankbaits and jigs.  Some Largemouth are also being taken shallow in the creeks and bays on warmer days on lipless crankbaits.  The Largemouth fishing has been very good this past week.
 
Smallmouth Bass:  The Smallmouth Bass continue to elude the anglers here as far as any numbers of fish.  Some nice single fish are being reported to be taken on main lake points and secondary points in the creeks and bays on suspending jerkbaits, slow rolled crankbaits, tube jigs and jigs.  I am very surprised that no one is reporting or are we in my boat finding any schools of feeding prespawn Smallmouth.  Hopefully this will change soon but until then we will just have to settle for an occasional nice single fish.
 
Some of the productive lures reported this week are:  Lucky Craft pointers in pearl ayu and aurora black, Rapala Xrap in olive green and black/silver, Rapala shadraps in crawdad and black/silver, Rapala DT series in hot mustard, Bomber flat A crankbaits in shad patterns, D&L baby advantage jig in "oops" pattern and Last Cast Baits wooley bug finesse jigs green pumpkin.  
 
Crappie:  Crappie are being taken over brush piles in 12-15 ft of water on small tube jigs fished vertically on the old creek channels around the mouths of the creeks and bays.  This week there were a number of reports of Black Crappie being taken on gravel banks in 5-6 ft of water on road runner type lures.  With the water temperatures now in the low 50's, there should be more of this activity as the Black Crappie move to spawn soon.  
 
As I indicated in my report a few weeks ago, the early success on the Largemouth in February was a good indication that the Largemouth fishing would be very good overall this coming season.  The reports I received and our own fishing this past week has just served to strengthen my thoughts that this may be a very good year for Largemouth.  

The fish we are catching are fat and healthy and there were at least two tournaments this past weekend that it took 25lbs on 5 fish to win with a number of other bags over 20lbs.  There are plenty of smaller fish being caught also which bodes well for the coming years.  
 
The lakes are getting busy now with Bass and Crappie anglers getting out on the water to catch the early spring bite.  Please remember that courtesy goes a long way and makes being on the water more enjoyable as well as safer.  We still have hypothermic water and weather conditions so be prepared in case you break down or have an accident.  

Take a survival kit with you, with dry clothes, fire starter and signaling device.  Store your cell phone in a waterproof bag..it will do you no good if it takes a dunking.  Let someone know where you will be fishing and when you will be coming home....and have them check on you to make sure you made it in.  

More Kentucky Lake Fishing Reports

Now That You're 'Hooked' on Fishing... Come See Us!

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.


In Flight
Photo by John Mitchell

Gliding gracefully over the water, this heron keeps a stealthy eye out for his next meal. Herons are one of the more common species of birds that can be seen at Kentucky Lake.