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Archived Fishing Report

Dave Stewart's Fishing Report

Written by Dave Stewart | Originally published 09/12/2013

Kentucky Lake:  Water Level at Kentucky Dam - 356.14  Surface Temperature - 84

Lake Barkley:  Water Level at Barkley Dam - 356.15  Surface Temperature - 84
Both lakes are three feet below summer pool and on a slow draw down toward winter pool.  Kentucky Dam has been generating an average flow of 33,700 over today.  Barkley Dam has been generating an average flow of 15,100 today.  

With the water levels now well below summer pool, boaters should be cautious about navigating outside of the marked channels.  Just because these are big lakes does not mean they are deep lakes.  Certainly, nothing can ruin a fun fishing trip quicker than a damaged lower unit or even worse an injury caused by striking an unseen underwater object.  
We have been under high pressure with humid hot days this week and the heat has kept the water temperatures up but relief is coming starting with a cold frontal passage this evening to be followed by another cold frontal passage later tonight.  

This is going to bring in some early fall weather for the weekend and into next week.  The forecast for tomorrow is for a high of 77 and low of 48 with wind NNE at 14.  Saturday's forecast is for a high of 76 and low of 48 with wind ENE at 9.  Sunday is showing a high of 83 and low of 59 with wind ESE at 4.  It is going to be a beautiful weekend here in the lakes area.  The extended forecast into next week is showing highs in the mid 80's and low's in the mid 60's through the week with another cold front now forecasted to come through the area around next Thursday or Friday.  

These cooler temperatures will most certainly start moving the water temperatures down and move more baitfish and bass into the creeks and bays to stage for the coming fall feeding patterns.  Our fishing this past week showed little change from the past week with us having taken fish early in the mornings on main lake points and also back shallow in the creeks and bays on topwater lures and then backing out to deeper flats and lead in banks using spinnerbaits, crankbaits and swim baits.  

We have also been taking fish on the ledges during the day, but as reported last week, the baitfish and the following bass are moving a lot on the ledges so it is a matter of finding which spots have the baitfish right now and capitalizing on the following bass when they decide to eat.  We are still taking ledge fish on crankbaits and swim baits but the most productive techniques have been Carolina rigs and drop shot rigs with some jig bite.  
Largemouth Bass:  Largemouth are still being taken on the river and creek channel ledges on the main lakes as well as around the mouths of the creeks and bays.  Some fish are being taken on deep diving crankbaits and swim baits but the more productive bite has been on Carolina rigged creature baits, dragging football head jigs and drop shot rigs. 

The ledge fish have been scattered this week but we are still managing to find some actively feeding fish.  Largemouth are also being taken in the back halves of the creeks and bays as they are feeding on schools of young threadfin shad.  These fish are being taken on topwater lures early and late in the day with  spinnerbaits, lipless and square billed crankbaits and chatterbaits working during the day on deeper flats and lead in banks.  

The better bite has been around schools of small white and yellow bass where the Largemouth are mixing in with these feeding smaller fish.  Although we are taking some numbers of fish on this shallow water pattern, most of the fish are small or just over keeper size with some occasional 3 lbs fish.  
Smallmouth Bass:  Smallmouth are being taken on main lake gravel and rocky points early and late in the day on topwater lures and then on finesse jigs and tube jigs during the day.  The better Smallmouth fishing is still being reported at night.  These night feeders are being taken on rocky banks and gravel banks on the main lakes on slow rolled dark colored spinnerbaits with a single oversized Colorado blade.  
Some productive lures reported this week are:   Lucky Craft Sammy in ghost pearl lemon, Strike King KVD splash baits in bone,  Slong's spinnerbaits in blue glimmer, Bag 5 custom painted Strike King XD 6 series baits in blue glimmer and green gizzard shad,  Bag 5 custom painted square billed crankbaits in blue glimmer pattern, Bandit medium running crankbaits in rootbeer/chartreuse,  Bag 5 custom painted Strike King Red Eye shad in blue glimmer, Chatterbaits in blue glimmer with twin tail Yamamoto trailer in blue pearl, Charmer timber pups in green pumpkin and watermelon/purple on Carolina rigs, Slong's football head jigs in Cumberland Craw,  D&L baby advantage jigs in Cumberland Craw and "oops" patterns as well as Last Cast hairy bug jigs in green pumpkin, Charmer shaky head worms on drop shot rigs in green pumpkin candy and Charmer tubes in road kill and green pumpkin.  
White Bass:  White Bass are being taken on the old river channel ledges where they are feeding on schools of baitfish.  These fish can be taken by vertically fishing with inline spinners and small spoons.  Some fish are also being taken by trolling inline spinners behind deep diving crankbaits along the river ledges and main lake creek channel ledges as well as on old creek channels around the mouths of the creeks and bays.  
Catfish:  Catfish are being taken on the old river channel ledges in 25-35 feet of water using nightcrawlers and cut baits.  The best bite is during periods of current.  

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.

Photo by Angela Smith

May your campfires keep the bug bites away, and the mallows burnt gooey. Experience your next campfire at Kentucky Lake.