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 10/15/2015

Kentucky Lake:  Water Level at Kentucky Dam – 355.21  Surface Temperature – 70

Lake Barkley:  Water Level at Barkley Dam – 355.05  Surface Temperature – 70
Both lakes are one foot above winter pool.  Kentucky Dam has been generating around 40,000 cfs today.  Barkley Dam has been generating around 27,000 cfs today. 

With the lake levels down, boaters need to be cautious when navigating the lakes. These are big lakes, but they are shallow river lakes. If you are not familiar with the lakes, make sure you use the navigation lanes and if you are not sure of the depths and locations of obstructions where you are, idle your boat until you are in safe water. 
General Conditions:  Nice to be back on the water this week after my break last week to attend my annual get away with my old military buddies.  The weather has been nice this week with sunny skies and post frontal conditions.  

I have not seen much change this week from when I left for my get away.  The fish are still scattered with a few more now in the creeks and bays.  This was also evidenced by the results of the big annual Renegade Classic Tournament results last week.  

It only took a little over 10 lbs a day to make the two day cut and 18lbs to win the final one day weight.  This is pretty typical of this time of October as the fish are still transitioning from summer locations to fall locations.  
A cold front is coming through the lakes area tonight bringing with it some cooler temperatures with a chance of some frost in the area this weekend.  The forecast for tomorrow is for a high of 67/low of 38 with wind NNW 14.  Saturday is calling for a high of 61/low of 36 with wind N 8.  Sunday’s forecast continues showing a post frontal day with a high of 63/ low of 42 with wind ENE 6.  

The extended forecast into mid next week is calling for day time high’s in the low 70’s and night time low’s in the high 40’s.  Winds are forecasted to have shifted to be from the south as another cold front approaches toward the latter part of the week.  Certainly this cooler weather pattern should drop the water temperatures some more and move more fish into the creeks and bays to feed up for winter.
Largemouth Bass: Largemouth are being taken on ledges around the mouths of deeper creeks and bays. These fish are being taken on Carolina rigged creature baits, dragging large football head jigs, shaky heads and drop shot rigs. Largemouth are also being taken on primary points and channel banks of the main lake using the same techniques as mentioned above. 

One can also catch fish on secondary points and on the flats in the creeks and bays where some bass are feeding on schools of baitfish. These fish are being taken on top water lures, medium running crank baits, lipless crank baits, spinner baits, finesse jigs, tube jigs and shaky heads. Largemouth are being taken around grass beds in the creeks and bays south of Blood River early in the morning on top water lures and senko type baits. Overall the fish are scattered and bite is slow.
Smallmouth Bass: Smallmouth are being taken on rocky main lake primary points and secondary points in the front halves of the creeks and bays as well as on ledges. These fish are being taken on Carolina rigged creature baits, jigs, tube jigs and shaky heads. The bite on these fish during the day is slow. 
Productive Lures: Some of the more productive lures reported this week are: Lucky Craft Sammy and Lucky Craft Gunfish in ghost pearl lemon, Slong’s spinner baits in blue glimmer, Bag 5 square bill crank baits in blue glimmer, Strike King Red Eye Shad in chrome sexy shad and sexy shad, Bag 5 custom painted Red Eye Shad lipless crank baits in blue glimmer, Charmer Timber Pups in green pumpkin and watermelon/purple on Carolina rigs , Charmer shaky head worms on drop shot rigs in bama bug and watermelon/purple as well as Robo worms in green pumpkin variations, Slong’s trokar football head jigs in, mustang (blue craw), possum and Cumberland craw and D&L football head jigs in Oops and Cumberland Craw patterns, D&L baby advantage jigs in “oops” pattern and Cumberland Craw, Slong's shaky head jigs with Charmer shaky head worms in watermelon candy and bama bug as well as Yamamoto Senko’s in green pumpkin/black and Charmer tubes in road kill and green pumpkin/orange on tube jigs.
Crappie: Crappie are being taken over brush piles and sunken stake beds on the main lake flats in 8-15 feet of water as well as over brush piles and sunken stake beds in the creeks and bays in 8-12 ft of water by spider rigging with small jigs tipped with minnows. The numbers of keeper fish are not great but there some action being reported on these staging fall fish.
White Bass: Whites are being taken by vertically fishing inline spinners, blade baits and small spoons over schools of deeper on ledges around the mouths of the creeks and bays. Schools of smaller Whites and Yellow Bass are starting to show up on the flats in the creeks and bays where they are feeding on schools of small baitfish. These fish can be taken on inline spinners and blade baits. 
Catfish: Catfish are being taken in the old river channels now in 20-30 ft of water on bottom rigs with cut baits, night crawlers. shrimp and leach combinations and yellow tails. Some catfish are also being taken on the flats in the creeks and bays now as they are feeding on schools of baitfish.

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.

Colorful Bridge
Photo by Shane Dunnaway

In the back of Hematite Lake in LBL are a series of boardwalks and bridges. In autumn, spectacular colors of foliage are scattered throughout, as seen here on this "colorful" bridge.