Lodging Fishing Attractions Towns & Bays Dining Events Real Estate Maps Lake Conditions

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

Archived Fishing Report

Dave Stewart's Fishing Report

Written by Dave Stewart | Originally published 12/19/2001

Kentucky Lake:  Headwater Elevation - 354.84   Surface Temperature - 54

Lake Barkley:  Headwater Elevation - 354.95  Surface Temperature - 55

The heavy rains that came through the lakes area last week raised the water again as expected and the lakes are being pulled hard to bring them back to winter pool levels.  

I have received no reports on fishing on Lake Barkley this past week.  The water on Lake Barkley is muddy for the most part. 

Kentucky Lake is another story altogether.  The water on Kentucky Lake is stained and there is good current from the water being spilled at the dam.  The good bass fishing bite that I have been reporting for the past few weeks is still continues and I am receiving daily reports of some really good catches of Smallmouth and Largemouth with the best bite seeming to be the Smallmouth.  

I myself was out for only a couple hours yesterday and had 4 really nice Smallmouth in the boat in that short time period with the biggest at over 6lbs.  I talked to another angler that was fishing the same pattern and he had 5 Smallmouth between 4-5 lbs also.  

I have received numerous reports from anglers this past week of good Smallmouth catches with numbers of fish over 4lbs and some over 6lbs.   I also have received reports of some good Largemouth being caught with some over 6lbs.  

Would you believe that I only saw two other boats bass fishing yesterday with this kind of bite that has been going on for weeks now?  I don't know how long this bite is going to last because I am sure it is because our water temperatures are still in the 50's but if you are tired of hunting or are getting cabin fever, you should really consider a day on Kentucky Lake right now.  

Back to the report:  Bass Patterns - The Smallmouth and Largemouth are being caught on pea gravel points near the river channel and on main lake ledges.  The point fish are taking crankbaits and tube baits fished on tube jigs and also Carolina Rigs.  

The ledge fish are taking tube baits fished on tube jigs and Carolina Rigs.  I also have received a report of some good Largemouth being caught near the backs of the bays on Rattletraps, spinnerbaits, and tube baits.  I received another report today of some Smallmouth being caught on rock bluff banks along creek channels on the tubes.  

The following lures have been reported to me as being productive this week:  Snoozer's 3.5" tubes in Smoke/Purple and Watermelon Burst, Shadraps in #7 original Crawdad pattern, Bandit 300 series crankbaits in Rootbeer/Chartruese, Rattletraps in Smokey Joe and Crawdad patterns, and Chartruese/White Spinnerbaits with gold blades (no brand reported but I recommend LockJaw).  

The Crappie bite is slow.  This is due to the water level fluctuations I am sure and hopefully will get better if the lake level off with the next few days.  

I have received a couple reports that the Sauger are hitting fair late in the afternoon and early evening on shallow pea gravel points near the river channel in eddy water using jigs tipped with minnows.  There has been no reports on any other fish due to lack of fishing activity.

I would like to take this opportunity to with a Merry Christmas to all my clients and folks that read this report and I thank you for your support and friendship.  

I would also particularly like to wish my good friend Frank Flack of the Your Outdoors TV show a very Merry Christmas and we all hope you come home safe very soon.  (Frank is currently serving with the 5th Special Forces in Afghanistan).  

I would like to ask all that read this report to take time to light a candle this Christmas Eve for Frank and all those good people spending their Christmas away from home and loved ones so that we at home can be safe to enjoy ours.  

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.


Paddleboarding
Photo by Cliff Grizzard

Karson takes advantage of the last few minutes of daylight by paddleboarding on Kentucky Lake.