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Archived Fishing Report

Dave Stewart's Fishing Report

Written by Dave Stewart | Originally published 09/23/2010

Kentucky Lake:  Water Level at Ky Dam - 355.66  Surface Temperature - 80

Lake Barkley:  Water Level at Barkley Dam - 355.65  Surface Temperature - 80
 
Both lakes are three and one half feet below summer pool.  Well, we have had some unseasonably warm weather this week with daytime highs in the 90's and night time low's in the 70's.  These temperatures coupled with flat water and blue skies though mid week brought the water temperatures back up a couple of degrees and as one would expect has slowed the shad in their fall transition.  

This is pretty normal during the fall transition period, that is, having the water temperatures see sawing up and down, especially during the early stages of the transition.  These fluctuating up and down water temperatures tends to spread the shad out and thus the Largemouth.  This results in the myriad of patterns we experience during the transition period.  The transition period normally lasts about 4 or 5 weeks until the water temperatures begin a steady cooling that results in more shad moving into the shallows in big numbers which initiates the best shallow water fall feeding.  

Just like last week, I have reports of a myriad of patterns taking Largemouth from the ledges to the shallows.  The most consistent bite this week for keeper fish has continued to be on the ledges with slow presentations.  We are taking some fish on the shallow flats and deeper flats in the creeks and bays but these are mostly small fish.  The shallow flat bite has been slow this week with the flat water and blue bird skies, the deeper flats (6-15) ft of water has been a little better under these conditions as is the bite on secondary points and channel banks in the creeks and bays but again these are mostly smaller fish.  

The Illinois Team Trail Classic which was fished on Saturday and Sunday this past weekend is reflective of the weights of most tournaments during the fall transition period.  The winning two day weight total was 31.49 lbs ranging to 27.10 lbs for 5th place.  
 
The weather forecast for tomorrow is for a frontal passage sometime early tomorrow evening.  We can expect southwest changing to west winds tomorrow with some strong gusts and scattered thunderstorms with this frontal passage.  We will be in post frontal conditions on Saturday and Sunday with northerly winds and cooler temperatures.  

The extended forecast at this time for next week is showing cooler temperatures with highs in the upper to low 70's and night time lows in the 50's.  If this forecast holds true, we can expect the water temperatures to drop again and we should see more movement of some shad into the creeks and bays.  
 
Both lakes have had low current flows for the past few days with Kentucky Lake averaging around 27,000 cfs and Lake Barkley averaging around 8500 cfs around the clock.
 
Largemouth Bass:  Largemouth are being taken on the ledges on the main lakes and around the mouths of the creeks and bays.  These fish are being taken on Carolina rigged creature baits, jigs and shaky heads.  Largemouth are also being taken on primary points and also secondary points and associated creek channel banks in the creeks and bays.  These fish are being taken on deep and medium running crankbaits, Carolina rigged creature baits, Texas rigged large worms, jigs and shaky heads.  

Some Largemouth are also being taken on the shallow flats as well as deeper flats in the creeks and bays.  The shallow fish are being taken on topwater lures, spinnerbaits, chatterbaits and lipless crankbaits.  This bite has been over all slow in the shallows this week.  The fish on the deeper flats are being taken by yo yo ing lipless crankbaits, blade baits, spoons and slow rolling spinnerbaits.  This bite on the deeper flats has been fair for numbers of short fish and slow for numbers of keepers.  Again this week, the most reported success on keepers has been on Carolina rigged creature baits on the ledges with slow presentations.
 
Smallmouth Bass:  Smallmouth are being taken on main lake points and the first secondary points in the creeks and bays.  These fish are being taken on topwater lures early and late in the day and on Carolina rigged creature baits, jigs and shaky heads during the day.  Some nice fish are being reported but the numbers are low.
 
Some of the productive lures reported this week have been:  Lucky Craft Sammy in ghost pearl lemon and Yozuri PopnSplash in ghost lemon, Strike King Series 5 and 6 crankbaits in sexy shad, Bandit 200 and 300 series crankbaits in rootbeer and cabin special, Slong's spinnerbaits and chatterbaits in blue glimmer, Strike King Red Eye Shad in chrome sexy shad and sexy shad, Silver Buddy blade baits, Strike King sexy shad spoons, Charmer Timber Pups in watermelon/purple and green pumpkin, Charmer 10.5 inch gator tail worms in green pumpkin, Zoom trick worms in green pumpkin/blue and Charmer shaky head worms in green pumpkin fished on Slong's shaky head jigs and Slong's jigs in green pumpkin/blue with matching paca chunk trailer.  
 
Crappie:  Crappies are being taken over brush piles and deep stake beds in 10-20 ft of water along old creek channel ledges near the mouths of the creeks and bays.  These fish are being taken by spider rigging small jigs and small minnows.  
 
White Bass:  White Bass, like the Largemouth are being found in a number of areas.  There are still some good White Bass being taken on the ledges on the main lake by vertically fishing with inline spinners and small spoons.  White Bass are also being taken around the mouths of the bays by fishing over deep humps and along the creek channel ledges on these same techniques.  

In a few of the creeks and bays, I am seeing a number of jumps on the shallow flats, even with the blue skies as White and Yellow Bass are chasing schools of young shad.  These fish can be readily taken on inline spinners and curly tail jigs retrieved through the feeding schools.
 
Bluegill:  Bluegills are being taken on gravel points and banks near wood cover by vertical fishing with small jigs tipped with worms.  

More Kentucky Lake Fishing Reports

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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.


Fall at Kentucky Lake
Photo by Shane Dunnaway

A beautiful palette of colors can be experienced at Kentucky Lake during autumn. It's a site to see!