Explore Kentucky Lake

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

Archived Fishing Report

Dave Stewart's Fishing Report

Written by Dave Stewart | Originally published 03/28/2013

Kentucky Lake:  Water Level at Kentucky Dam - 355.25  Surface Temperature - 51

Lake Barkley:  Water Level at Barkley Dam - 355.40  Surface Temperature - 51
Both lakes are about one and one quarter feet over winter pool.  Both dams are spilling but the rate of spill has decreased over the past 24 hours.  Kentucky Dam has been spilling an average of 65,000 cfs today and Barkley Dam has been spilling at an average rate of 22,000 today.  
Certainly winter gave us another blast of cold earlier this week with some rain, snow and nasty cold.  When I launched yesterday morning the air temperature was 24 degrees and the water temperature was 45.  But some spring weather finally pushed it head in the door yesterday afternoon and a warming trend started as a warm front formed just to our northwest and this raised our water temperatures.  

This warm front made for the warmest day today we have seen in a long time with temperatures reaching the low 60's today.  This warm front will start moving south tomorrow bring with it mild temperatures but also some rain.  There is a 60% chance of rain tomorrow with a low's in the lower 40's in the morning and a high's in the mid 50's with SE wind at 8.  

Saturday is looking pretty good with a high of 65 and low of 56 with a 30% chance of rain and SE wind at 8.  Easter Sunday has a 30% chance of rain and thunderstorms with a high 66 with WNW wind at 12.  Another cold front is due to show up in the area Sunday night or early Monday.  We are forecasted to have high's in the 40's and low's in the lower 30's early next week with a chance of rain and or snow on Monday.  
This warming trend as mentioned before has shot the water temperatures up and even though we are still about 9 degrees below normal, the warmer forecast over the next few days is promising to raise them again.  What I have seen over the past two days is that more bass are moving to early prespawn areas on the main lakes and in the front halves of the creeks and bays.  

A lot of the ledges I checked today were void of numbers of fish that have been hanging out there for the past few weeks but we did see some ledges still holding good numbers.  Our best bite over the past few days has been on medium running crankbaits, suspending jerkbaits and jigs as we started to concentrate more on the early prespawn patterns.  

We did not throw the Alabama rig much this week but I have had a number of reports of success on this still working on deep points and ledges.  If the present long range forecast is correct, I don't expect to see much of a drop in the water temperatures with this next cold front early next week and the forecast for later next week is for more of this warmer weather...let's keep our fingers crossed, at least I am because I am tired of all this cold weather we have been having as I am sure most of you are too.  
Largemouth:  Largemouth are being taken on main lake points and channel banks as well as secondary points and channel banks in the mouths of the creeks and bays.  These fish are being taken on Alabama rigs, slow rolled crankbaits, suspending jerkbaits and jigs.  Largemouth are also being taken on the ledges around the mouths of the creeks and bays on Alabama rigs and jigs.  There are also some early Largemouth being taken near shallow gravel banks in the creeks and bays on warmer days on lipless crankbaits.  
Smallmouth:  Smallmouth are being taken on main lake points and the first secondary points in the creeks and bays.  These fish are being taken on medium running crankbaits, suspending jerkbaits and jigs.  
Some of the productive lures reported this week are:  Bag 5 suspending jerkbaits in ghost pearl ayu, Lucky Craft pointers in ghost pearl ayu, Rapala Shadraps in blue bleeding shad, green bleeding shad and black/silver, Bag 5 medium running crankbaits in green gizzard shad, Strike King red eye shad in chrome sexy shad, D&L baby advantage jigs in oops and Cumberland craw patterns and Big Hammer swim baits in pearl on Alabama rigs.
Crappie:  Crappie are being taken over early staging brush piles in 15-20 ft of water on the main lakes around the mouths of the creeks and bays.  Some Crappie are also being taken over staging brush piles, mats and stumps in 10-12 ft of water.  These fish are being taken by spider rigging and vertical jigging with jigs and jigs tipped with small minnows.  

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.

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.