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Archived Fishing Report

Dave Stewart's Fishing Report

Written by Dave Stewart | Originally published 09/20/2012

Kentucky Lake:  Water Level at Kentucky Dam:  357.40   Surface Temperature:  76

Lake Barkley:  Water Level at Barkley Dam:  357.40  Surface Temperature:  76
 
Both lakes are about one and one half feet below summer pool  Heavy rains last weekend and earlier this week in areas up river from the lakes has caused an influx of water and both lakes have slowly risen to current levels.  The TVA forecast shows the lakes should crest on Saturday barring any more unforeseen influx of water from up the rivers.  

Kentucky Dam has been generating an average rate of 60,000 cfs today and this is forecasted to continue over the next day or two.  Barkley Dam has been generating an average rate of 16,400 around the clock the past few days.  
 
The weather forecast for tomorrow is for a 30% chance of scattered thunderstorms and South wind at 16 mph as another cold front will be passing through the lakes area sometime tomorrow evening.  We will be post frontal on Saturday and Sunday with NNW wind at 17 mph forecasted for Saturday and a high of 79 and low of 44.

Sunday's forecast is for a high of 72 with a low of 47 with NNW wind at 8 mph.  A warming trend is forecasted for next week with daytime highs reaching the mid 80's by midweek with a southerly flow of wind.  As always, you should check the latest wind and weather forecasts before venturing on the big lakes and plan accordingly.  
 
We had some scattered rain and cloud cover this past Sunday and Monday as a cold front was approaching and the shallow water bite was active.  We had strong North winds on Tuesday that kept most anglers off the lakes.  We received a taste of late fall weather on Wednesday morning with a low of 41.  Cooler days and nights this past week dropped the water temperatures 3 degrees as I had predicted was going to happen this week.  

This drop in water temperatures has put the Bass into the full blown fall transition patterns now with the fish still scattered and moving a lot on the main lakes.  A few more young shad moved into a number of the creeks and bays this week with some Bass following them.  As is normal during this transition period, there are a number of patterns to be fished from ledges to the backs of the creeks and bays.  

We concentrated our efforts on main lakes flats with grass this week as well as grass beds in the backs of the creeks and bays with some time also spent on secondary points and channel banks leading into the shallow flats.  
 
Largemouth Bass:  Largemouth are being taken on a myriad of patterns.  Some Largemouth are being taken on the ledges around the mouths of the creeks and bays on Carolina rigged small creature baits and by dragging football head jigs.  

Some Largemouth are being taken on main lake points and on secondary points and creek channel banks in the creeks and bays.  These point fish are being taken on crankbaits, jigs and tube jigs.  Largemouth are also being taken on shallow main lake flats with submerged grass and in the backs of the creeks and bays on matted and submerged grass beds.  These shallow water fish are being taken on topwater lures , spinnerbaits, Texas rigged worms and senko type baits.  

We concentrated our efforts on these shallow fish this past week with walking topwater baits early in the backs of the creeks or on main lake flats, frogs fished on matted grass and over submerged grass, spinnerbaits off the grass and senko type lures when the reaction bite was slow
 
Smallmouth Bass:  Smallmouth are being taken on main lake points as well as on secondary points and channel banks in the creeks and bays.  These fish are being taken on jigs, tube jigs with a few fish taken on these points on early morning topwater lures.  We also had a few Smallmouth on topwater lures early in the backs of the creeks and bays and also on senko type lures around the edges of deeper grass.  
 
Some of the productive lures reported this week are:  Lucky Craft Sammy in ghost pearl lemon, Slong's spinnerbaits in blue glimmer, Zoom horny toads in green pumpkin pearl and watermelon/red pearl.  Spro popping frogs in white, Strike King red eye shad in sexy shad and chrome sexy shad, D&L jigs in "oops" and Cumberland craw patterns with green pumpkin trailers as well as Yamamoto Senkos in green pumpkin.  
 
Crappie:  Crappie anglers are taking fish at the mouths of the creeks and bays as well as in the creeks and bays by fishing vertically with small jigs and minnow/jig combinations over brush piles in 10-15 ft of water.  
 
Catfish: Catfish are being taken along the old river channels on bottom rigs baited with cut baits and night crawlers.  This bite picked up this week due no doubt to the current being generated.  These fish are being taken in 20-30 ft of water along the old river channel ledges.  

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.


Kentucky Lake Sunset
Photo by Shawn Dunnaway

Sunsets at Kentucky Lake are special. You can find them on the eastern banks of Kentucky Lake looking west across a mile of ripples and waves. There's nothing quite like experiencing a sunset on Kentucky Lake.