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Archived Fishing Report

Dave Stewart's Fishing Report

Written by Dave Stewart | Originally published 05/09/2013

Kentucky Lake:  Water Level at Kentucky Dam - 363.32   Surface Temperature - 66

Lake Barkley:  Water Level at Barkley Dam - 363.20  Surface Temperature - 66
Both lakes are slightly over feet above summer pool.  Kentucky Dam has been spilling at a varying rate today of between 102,000 - 109,000 cfs.  Barkley Dam has been spilling at a varying rate today of between 100,000 - 109,000 cfs. 

Although both lakes have continued spilling water this week, lake levels have not varied much from last week with actually a slight rise of a few inches.  This is due to the heavy rains received here and up the rivers last weekend. 

Kentucky Lake is stained in the channel with some creeks and bays lightly stained and some clearing.  Lake Barkley is heavily stained in the channel with creeks and bays ranging from heavy stain to light stain. Both lakes have debris floating in them, Barkley has more than Kentucky but there is some in Kentucky so be careful when you are running. 
As I mentioned in last week's report, we have a myriad of patterns working on the Largemouth.  We have post spawn Largemouth on the early ledges around the mouths of the bays and on the creek ledges and humps on the west side of Kentucky Lake.  We still have Largemouth on late prespawn and spawning patterns also.  

Both the ledges and the late prespawn/spawn fish are producing some good catches.  It is taking 25 to 28 lbs to win most of the larger tournaments here right now.  I also mentioned last week that my clients and I have still been concentrating on late prespawn Largemouth and taking them in the flooded over bushes of the original shoreline.  We continued this pattern this week with good success.  We have been throwing spinnerbaits and swim baits early on most mornings on actively chasing Largemouth and then continuing the bite through out the day by dragging Texas rigged lizards and small jigs through the flooded over brush.  

The females we are catching are still laden with eggs and have very few marks on their tales from fanning the nests.  I expect this pattern will hold up good for at least another week.  The ledge fish are being taken primarily on fast cranked deep diving crankbaits with some taken on spoons and jigs.  
The forecast for tomorrow is for a high of 74 and low of 56 with a 60% chance of scattered thunderstorms and a SSW wind at 11 mph.  Another cool front is forecasted to move though the area late tomorrow or early Saturday.  The high on Saturday will be 73 and low of 47 with a 20% chance of rain with NW wind at 10.  Sunday will be post frontal with a high of 65 and low of 45 with wind NW at 8.  A warming trend is in the forecast early next week with a return to high's in the 80's by mid week.
Largemouth Bass:  Largemouth are being taken in the flooded over buck brush and vegetation on Texas rigged lizards, finesse jigs,  spinnerbaits, swim baits and whacky rigs. Post spawn Largemouth are being taken on lead out banks and points with as well as on ledges around the mouths of the creeks and bays and on main lake creek channel ledges and humps.  These fish are being taken on deep diving crankbaits, spoons and jigs.  Largemouth are also being taken by flipping jigs, Texas rigged lizards and creature baits and tubes around visible flooded trees and brush.  
Smallmouth:  Smallmouth are being taken on gravel points and bank on the main lake and around the mouths of the creeks and bays.  These fish are being taken on Carolina rigged creature baits, tube jigs and jigs.  Some few nice fish are being reported but not large numbers.
Some of the productive lures reported this week are: Strike King XD 6 crankbaits in blue back chartreuse belly, Strike King sexy spoons in shad patterns,  Charmer lizards in green pumpkin and watermelon/red, Slong's and Strike King spinnerbaits in white and white/chartreuse, Zoom trick worms on whacky rigs in green pumpkin, watermelon/red and green pumpkin/blue, Big Hammer swim baits in sexy smelt and bay smelt, D&L advantage jigs in Cumberland Craw, Slong's football head jigs in Cumberland Craw and Charmer tubes in green pumpkin and roadkill.
Crappie:  The Crappie bite was reported as scattered this week. I had reports of Crappie being taken around the flooded buck brush and around the bases of willow trees on minnows under bobbers.  I had some reports of Crappie being taken over brush piles in 6-10 ft of water by spider rigging with small minnows.
Bluegill/RedEars:  The Bluegill bite has been reported as good this week with big gills being taken on crickets under bobbers around flooded brush in 5-6 ft of water and around willow trees.  The Red Ear bite has been reported as scattered this week with some catches around gravel bars with brush in 5-6 ft of water using split shot rigs baited with small creature jigs tipped with worms.   
Catfish:  Channel Catfish are roaming the shallows in the backs of the creeks and bays, especially near rocky bottom areas as well as on shallow rocky bottom areas on the main lake.  These fish are being taken on night crawlers fished on bottom and under bobbers.  Good catches are being reported.

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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.

Take A Kid Fishing
Photo by Shawn Dunnaway

These boys had a blast bank fishing on Kentucky Lake. Take your kids on a fishing trip to Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley!