Lodging Fishing Attractions Towns & Bays Dining Events Real Estate Maps Lake Conditions

Kentucky Lake, Lake Barkley Fishing
Facebook Twitter YouTube Contact Us About Us
Switch Mobile/Desktop

Archived Fishing Report

Dave Stewart's Fishing Report

Written by Dave Stewart | Originally published 10/01/2009

Kentucky Lake:  Water Level at Ky Dam - 355.29  Surface Temperature - 73

Lake Barkley:  Water Level at Barkley Dam - 355.30  Surface Temperature - 73
 
Both lakes are slightly over one foot above winter pool.  A big cold front passed through the lakes area earlier this week dropping the water temperatures like a rock.  The morning water temperatures dropped 5 degrees over the past few days. The heavy current on both lakes continued this week as flood waters from upriver on both lakes is still being pulled through.  

Both lakes dropped over one foot in the last two days but were pretty much stable today and the forecast from the TVA indicates the lake levels should not fluctuate much over the next few days.  The heavy pull on the lakes is projected to be stepped down over the next few days also, but the projection still shows significant current in the forecast.  

With this all said, we have another cold front coming thru the lakes area tonight and tomorrow and there is a chance for some heavy rains so one should keep and eye on the TVA forecast for possible changes in lake levels and/or current forecasts.  The weather forecast shows high winds on the lakes for tomorrow from the west/southwest with the frontal passage, boaters should be cautious and check the latest forecasts before venturing on the lakes tomorrow.  

The wind forecast for Saturday is for west winds at around 16mph and light post frontal winds on Sunday.  The forecasted temperatures for the weekend are highs in the low 70's and low's in the upper 40's to low 50's.  
 
We are still in the midst of the transition from summer to fall patterns and the Largemouth are still scattered from the ledges on the main lakes to the backs of the bays as the shad movement to the shallows continues.  As one would expect, the drop in water temperatures has more shad on the move to the shallows over the past couple of days and more bass are showing up shallow but there are still numbers of Largemouth on the ledges and transitioning from the fronts of the bays to the shallows.  

This of course means there are still a myriad of patterns taking fish.  The fluctuating water levels seems to have slowed the Crappie bite from reports I received the past few days.  I am also seeing more good sized White Bass in the bays now feeding on schools of shad and we caught a number of good sized White Bass this week while fishing for Largemouth on the flats in the creeks and bays.  
 
Largemouth Bass:  The Largemouth are being taken on ledges on the main lakes and around the mouths of the bays.  These fish are being taken on deep diving crankbaits, spoons and Carolina rigged small creature baits.  Largemouth are also being taken on primary points and secondary points as well as creek channel banks in the creeks and bays.  These fish are being taken on crankbaits, spinnerbaits, jigs and shaky head worms.  

The Largemouth are also being taken on the shallow flats in the creeks and bays as they are feeding on schools of transitioned shad.  These fish are being taken on topwater lures, spinnerbaits, shallow running and lipless crankbaits, chatterbaits, Texas rigged worms and creature baits and dead stick worms.  
 
Smallmouth Bass:  Smallmouth are being taken on primary points and main lake secondary points on crankbaits, finesse jigs and tube jigs.  Some nice fish are being taken but they seem to be more single fish with few numbers being taken.  This should change in a few weeks as the water temperatures drop and the Smallmouth begin feeding more during the day.  
 
Some of the productive lures reported this week are:  Lucky Craft sammy in ghost pear lemon and chartreuse shad, Zara spooks in shad patterns, Chatterbuzz and Booyah buzzbaits in white, Hook Some Bass spinnerbaits and vibes (chatterbait) in blue glimmer, Strike King crankbaits in sexy shad, MOAB custom painted lucky craft crankbaits in super shad, Bandit crankbaits in speckled back and rootbeer, Strike King red eye shad in sexy shad, Strike King sexy spoons in shad patterns and spoons in silver, Charmer timber pups in green pumpkin and watermelon/purple, Zoom trick worms on shaky head jigs in green pumpkin, Last Cast finesse jigs in green pumpkin with Net Baits matching trailer, Yamamoto senko in variations of green pumpkin and watermelon, Yum dingers in green pumpkin/blue, Wave worm in green pumpkin and Ozark stickm in green pumpkin.  
 
Crappie:  Crappie are being taken over brush piles in 12-15 ft of water along the old creek channels in the creeks and bays.  These fish are being taken by spider rigging small jigs tipped with minnows and also crappie nibbles.  The bite was reported as slow this week with the fluctuating water levels.
 
Catfish:  Catfish are being taken along the old river channels on bottom bouncing rigs baited with yellowtail and large minnows.  Catfish are also being taken on the flats in the creeks and bays as they are feeding on schools of shad.  These shallow catfish are being taken by jug anglers baiting their jug lines with yellowtails and minnows.  
 
Bluegill:  Bluegills are being taken in brush piles on secondary gravel points in the creeks and bays in 8-15 ft of water by vertically fishing with small jigs tipped with worms.  Crappie anglers have reported catching these fish also on their minnow/jig combinations.  

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.


Beaver Dam Outlook
Photo by Melodie Cunningham

The view from the top of this beaver dam shows a Kentucky Lake inlet in late spring. An inlet like this one is habitat to a variety of exciting wildlife and plants just waiting to be explored!