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Archived Fishing Report

Dave Stewart's Fishing Report

Written by Dave Stewart | Originally published 02/20/3003

Kentucky Lake:  Headwater Elevation - 355.19   Surface Temperature - 45

Lake Barkley:  Headwater Elevation - 355.50  Surface Temperature - 45
Heavy rains, ice storms, and more rain has been the story here in the lakes area over the past week.  I hate to report it but there is more rain in the forecast for the next couple of days and then the temperatures are supposed to go below freezing for daytime highs for the early part of next week.  

Both lakes are maintaining levels at this time of around a foot over winter pool but all the flood gates are open on both lakes to keep the water at these levels.  

I received reports that Pickwick and Wheeler, the next two lakes upriver from Kentucky Lake,  indicating both lakes were flooding so we have a lot more water to come through here.  Lake Cumberland at the headwaters of the Cumberland River which feeds Lake Barkley is reported to have very high waters also which will eventually make its way thru here.  

Both lakes are heavily stained to muddy at this time.  There is one good bit of news though and that is that the rain that came in last week was a warm rain coming out of the southwest and that has raised the water temperatures up to the mid 40's and with a couple days of warm weather could see the temperatures in the high 40's which is the signal for the early spring bite to begin.  Checking my logs we seem to be about 3 or 4 degrees behind the water temperatures we had here last year at this time.  

Last year we had heavy rains also which colored up the water but they did not come in until around the end of February into the first part of March.  Hopefully, we will be getting all this rain out of the way early this year and March will come in without more of it.  
I only received one report from last week and those folks were fishing for Bass and did not have much luck.  The weather we had over the past week pretty much kept everyone off the lakes.  
Looking down the road, once the cold front gets through here early next week, if the temperatures rise again into the 50's for a few days we could be into the early spring bite for Bass and Crappie by the end of next week.  The best thing to do right now is monitor the water conditions and temperatures on a daily basis to see what is going on.  

I have not heard anything yet but I would suspect the Ohio River must be getting pretty high by now and that may cause the flow here on the lakes to be reduced which would raise the water levels significantly in a short time taking into consideration all the water that is upriver and coming this way.  

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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.

Fishing at Sunset
Photo by Sherry Bailey

So many childhood memories have been made on the banks of Kentucky and Barkley Lakes. These boys are determined to fish until the sun goes down.