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Archived Fishing Report

Dave Stewart's Fishing Report

Written by Dave Stewart | Originally published 02/28/2013

Kentucky Lake:  Water Level at Kentucky Dam - 355.78  Surface Temperature - 47

Lake Barkley:  Water Level at Barkley Dam - 355.80  Surface Temperature - 47
Both lakes are almost two feet above winter pool.  Both dams have gates open and are spilling.  Kentucky Dam has been spilling at an average rate of around 95,000 cfs all week but cut this flow down to 81,000 cfs this afternoon.  Barkley Dam has been spilling at an average rate of 34,00 cfs the past few days. 
The weather this week has been pretty much a repeat of last week with some cold and windy days but we did manage a few days on the water this week despite the wind and cold.  The patterns we reported last week are still holding up and I expect these patterns to continue until the water temperatures warm up into the 50's.   

The better bite has been late in the morning and during the afternoon when the water temperatures have warmed up a degree or two.  The bass have been cooperating more than the weather has so if you can find a day with a break in the wind and cold it is worth getting on the water.  There have been a number of over 20lb bags on 5 fish coming in the tournaments the past couple of weeks as the early big girls are now in their early prespawn feeding patterns.  

The weather forecast for tomorrow is for a high of 39 and low of 30 with a 40% chance of rain and snow and wind NNW at 12.  The weekend forecast looks cold with highs in the low 40's and lows in the high 20's.  There is a 20% chance of rain on Saturday with wind NNW at 14.  Sunday looks a little better with wind forecasted WNW at 6.  Monday appears to be the best forecast in the near future with a high of 48 and low of 38 with SE wind at 9 as another front approaches.  

Tuesday and Wednesday are forecasted to be post frontal with more N wind and highs in the low 40's.  If the long range forecast is correct, we should see a warming trend beginning late next week.  As always, weather and wind forecasts can change, so make sure you check the latest forecasts before going on the water.  

We are still in hypothermic conditions so make sure you take a survival kit with you on the water, put your cell phone in a waterproof bag and let someone know where you will be fishing and when you expect to return and have them check on you to make sure you made it off the lake safely.  
Largemouth Bass:  Largemouth are being taken on main lake points and channel banks in the current breaks as well as secondary points in the front halves of the deeper creeks and bays.  These fish are being taken on suspending jerk baits, Alabama rigs, jigs, shaky heads and slow rolled lipless crank baits.  Our best patterns this week was fishing current breaks on the main lake and rocky channel banks and secondary points inside the creeks and bays.  Some nice Largemouth are being taken right now.    
Smallmouth Bass:  Smallmouth are being taken on main lake points and channel banks in the current breaks on suspending jerk baits, Alabama rigs and jigs.  Some big early females have been taken but the numbers are low.  
Some of the productive lures reported this week are:  Bag 5 custom painted jerk baits in original rootbeer, Strike King jerk baits in green gizzard shad, Rapala Xraps in black/silver and olive,  Smithwick Rogue jerk bait in table rock shad, D&L jigs in Cumberland craw and  oops pattern, Charmer shaky head worms in green pumpkin candy on shaky heads,  Slong's jigs in copperhead, Strike King red eye shad in lavender shad and orange craw and Big Hammer swim baits on Alabama rigs in pearl.  
Crappie:  Crappie anglers are reporting a little slower bite this week with most of the fish coming in 15-20 ft of water over brush piles on the main lake and around the mouths of the creeks and bays.  These fish are being taken on small jigs fished vertically and on bottom bouncing rigs baited with minnows.

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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.

Hematite Leaves
Photo by Shane Dunnaway

Those who are familiar with Hematite Lake trail will know where this photo was taken. Beautiful autumn leaves attempt to cover the rocks alongside the path around Hematite Lake.