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Archived Fishing Report

Dave Stewart's Fishing Report

Written by Dave Stewart | Originally published 07/10/2002

Kentucky Lake:  Headwater Elevation - 358.85   Surface Temperature - 88

Lake Barkley:  Headwater Elevation - 358.70  Surface Temperature - 88
The above normal temperatures continued here in the lakes area during the past week and the dams started pulling a little more water than they have been causing some current on the lakes.   The Largemouth Bass are being caught on the old creek channel and main lake ledges for the most part but there also has been some early morning bite on the flats in the bays.  

The shallow fish are feeding on large schools of shad fry and can be taken on buzz baits, chug baits, and small crankbaits.  The ledge fish are hitting some topwater early on the tops of the ledges using stick baits and chug baits.  Later the Largemouth are taking stroked jignpigs, deep diving crankbaits, Carolina rigged creature baits, large worms, lizards, and tubes as well as Texas rigged large worms.  Some of the reported productive baits over the past week have been:  Black/blue jignpig, Poe's 400 crankbaits in various combination colors, Bill Norman DD14 and DD22 in Tennessee shad and baby bass,  Zoom brush hogs and lizards in plum and watermelon/red, Larew Whoodaddy's in watermelon/red, Berkley lizards in black/blue, Berkley Power 10"  Worms in junebug and blue fleck,  Snoozer's 3.5" tubes in road kill cammo and smoke/purple, Zara Spooks in white and shad patterns, and Rebel Pop R's in shad patterns.   
The Smallmouth Bass are being caught on the ledges during the day using the same baits as mentioned for the Largemouth above and on the main lake points on the LBL side of Kentucky Lake at night using dark colored spinnerbaits, jignpig, and Carolina rigged lizards.  Some of the productive lures being used at night are Strike King Midnight special spinnerbaits, black/blue jignpig, and Berkley Power lizards in black/blue.  
The White Bass are more active over the past week with the better current being pulled along the main lake ledges and at the mouths of the creeks with a good number of jumps being reported.  These fish can be caught on Roostertails, small spoons, and small crankbaits cast into and around the feeding fish.  These fish can also be caught when not actively surface feeding by vertically jigging Roostertails and small spoons along the ledges and also by slow trolling small deep diving crankbaits.
The Crappie fishing slowed a little over the past week as the current started to be pulled but I am still getting some reports of fish being caught in the 12 - 16 ft depth along the creek channel ledges using vertically fished small minnows and jigs.
The Bluegill and other panfish are feeding heavily on mayfly hatches near willow trees in the bays especially early and late in the day.  The very active fish can be taken on crickets and worms as well as small popper type baits.  Bluegill are also active around docks with brush cover using crickets and worms.  
Be especially alert on the water during this warm weather for pop up thunderstorms.  These storms can form very rapidly especially during the afternoon hours and can be very severe as evidenced here in the lakes area today.  Kentucky Lake went from almost a dead calm to big rollers in a matter of a few minutes today as a severe storm came thru the area.  

High winds and a possible tornado or waterspout caused a lot of damage and sunk a number of boats including a houseboat with a family on it that was picked up and turned upside down by the wind.  Luckily all of the people on the boat made it out without any casualties.  You should seek the closest shelter immediately if you see a storm coming when you are on the water.  
I would like to thank Jet-A-Marine in Calvert City for once again providing some great service for my boat which needed repairs last week.  Their service department is second to none and I would highly recommend them if you need service or are looking for a dealer to buy that new Triton or Ranger that will provide the follow on service that is so important.  

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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.

Photo by Angela Smith

Everything in nature is a reflection of everything. Calm evenings on Kentucky Lake produces a stunning mirror image of nature.