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Archived Fishing Report

Dave Stewart's Fishing Report

Written by Dave Stewart | Originally published 04/11/2013

Kentucky Lake:  Water Level at Ky Dam - 359.09  Surface Temperature - 58

Lake Barkley:  Water Level at Barkley Dam - 359.20  Surface Temperature - 57
Both lakes are at summer pool.  As I mentioned in last week's report, the TVA has raised the lake levels faster than normal for this month.  As is in accordance with the TVA River Operating Schedule, the lakes normally are raised through the month of April to reach summer pool levels at the end of the month.  

We are now at summer pool levels which is about 3 ft above where we normally are during this week in April.  Whether or not the TVA will leave the lakes up or drop them back down to normal levels remains to be seen.  We have had heavy rains in the lakes area which started last night and continued through out the day today.  

According to my rain gauge here at my house which is near The Moor's resort on north Kentucky lake, we received 3.8 inches of rain before the rains finally ended early this evening.  Obviously this much rain here as well as up the rivers is going to put more water run off into the lakes so either the TVA is going to have to increase the discharge rate or we will be going over summer pool. 

Kentucky Dam has been generating at an average rate of 69,000 cfs this evening which is up from 59,000 cfs they had been generating for the past few days.  Barkley Dam has been generating at an average rate of 16,200 cfs around the clock for the past few days.  

We had some beautiful weather here in the lakes area this past week until today.  We had temperatures in the upper 70's most days and lows in the 60's.  These warm days raised the water temperatures about 6 degrees on the main lake and even higher in the creeks and bays.  This warming of the waters has moved more shad and bass into the creeks and bays with and also turned the early fish that were already shallow on.  

We are still taking fish on deep points and banks as well as ledges around the mouths of the creeks and bays too, but with more fish moving into the creeks and bays we spent the majority of our time on staging points and banks in the creeks and bays as well as on the shallow flats in the backs of the creeks and coves.  

Our most productive bite this week was on the early fish back shallow using lipless and square billed crankbaits, Texas rigged lizards and tubes.  Although we did not throw any topwater lures and I did not receive any reports on topwater lures shallow, I did see a number of times active fish that I am sure we could have taken on topwater.  Most of the fish we took in shallow water were smaller buck bass, but we did get limits plus there of good keepers too.  

We were out in the pouring down rain today with the frontal passage and the water temperatures had dropped some in the creeks and the bite was much slower, but that is expected with a spring cold front.  The weather forecast for tomorrow is for a high of 61 and low of 37 with WSW wind at 18.  Saturday is forecasted to have a high of 61 and low of 45 with W wind at 11.  The warm up begins again on Sunday and is forecasted to continue through mid week with highs in the upper 70's and low's in the 60's.  This next warm up should raise the water temperatures again and get more fish moving toward the shallows.  
Largemouth Bass:  Largemouth are being taken on primary points and ledges around the mouths of the creeks and bays.  These fish are being taken on Alabama rigs, suspending jerkbaits,  Carolina rigged creature baits and jigs.  Largemouth are being taken on secondary staging points and channel banks in the creeks and bays.  These fish are being taken on medium running crankbaits, suspending jerkbaits, Texas rigged creature baits, shaky heads and jigs.  Largemouth are also being taken on the spawning flats near wood and vegetation on lipless and square billed crankbaits, spinnerbaits and Texas rigged creature baits.
Smallmouth Bass:  The Smallmouth are starting to bed now and can be found on gravel banks in pockets on the main lake and on gravel banks in the front halves of the creeks and bays.  These fish are being taken on slow rolled medium running crankbaits, jigs, shaky heads and tube jigs.  
Some of the productive lures reported this week are:  Lucky Craft pointers in pearl ayu, Rapala Xraps in black/silver and olive, Bag 5 custom painted medium running crankbaits in green gizzard shad, Rapala shadraps in original crawdad and blue bleeding shad, Strike King red eye shad lipless crankbaits in sexy shad, chrome sexy shad and gold sexy shad, Slong's football head jigs in Cumberland craw on ledges and points, D&L advantage jigs in Cumberland craw on secondary points in the creeks, Charmer lizards in green pumpkin and watermelon/red flake, Bag 5 custom painted square billed crankbaits in green gizzard shad, Charmer and Robo shaky head worms in green pumpkin on shaky heads and Charmer tubes in green pumpkin and road kill.  
Crappie:  Crappie are being taken on staging brush piles in the creeks and bays in 7-10 ft of water by vertical fishing with spider rigs using small tubes and minnows.  On warmer days some Crappie are moving to the banks as well as near the brush in the backs of the creeks during the warm part of the day.  These fish are being taken by casting road runner type jigs and minnows under bobbers.  I would expect to see the Crappie starting to spawn in large numbers with the warm up coming next week unless the TVA drops the water significantly.  

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Photo by Libby Mundy

This male eastern bluebird is looking for an insect to munch on. Easily spotted by binoculars, the males are bluer than the females which are mostly grey in color.