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 03/13/2003

Kentucky Lake:  Water Level at the Dam:  354.85   Surface Temperature:  49

Lake Barkley:  Water Level at the Dam:  354.80  Surface Temperature:  49
The lakes have remained stable over the last week and have cleared considerably.  The amount of water being pulled has dropped off about 60% but there is still good current on both lakes.  There is still some debris in the lakes although not nearly as much as before so you need to be on the lookout for limbs and logs when running.  

The weather has been nice and the fish are biting good although the Smallmouth and Largemouth Bass fishing is still not quite as good as it should be for this time of year...numbers of Largemouth are being caught and some Smallmouth but numbers of big fish are yet to be reported.  This should change over the next week as water temperatures rise a little more.  
The Largemouth Bass are being taken on Kentucky Lake on the main lake rocky points and banks as well as around the first secondary points in the bays on crankbaits, suspending jerkbaits, slow rolled spinnerbaits, and Texas rigged tubes.  

There are also some Largemouth being caught on Kentucky Lake on rattletraps fished in shallow water near wood cover.  Lake Barkley Largemouth are being reported to be best on jignpig on main lake points with some taking crankbaits in the same areas.  
The Smallmouth Bass are not as active as they should be but a few good catches have been reported on Kentucky Lake.  These great fighters are being taken on the LBL side of Kentucky Lake near pea gravel points on suspending jerkbaits, crankbaits, and grubs. 
Some of the lures reported to be working on the Bass are:  Snoozer's tubes in Road Kill Cammo, Fishco medium running crankbaits in Sunset Craw and Firetiger, Rapala Shadraps in original Crawdad and Black/Silver, Rattetraps in Red and Blue/Silver, Strike King Pro Model and Xwire Spinnerbaits in White and White/Chartruse.
The Crappie are biting good in the bays over brush piles in 12-15 ft of water.  Most of the Crappie being taken are Black Crappie. These fish are being taken by spider rigging small jigs, and minnow/jig combinations.  I have received a couple of reports of Crappie being taken on both Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley in shallow water by casting small jigs near wood cover on warm windy days.  
Remember that the water temperatures are still in the range for hypothermic conditions and you should take precautions to prevent hypothermia should you get wet.  Take extra clothing with you and let someone know when and where you are fishing and your expected time of return.  

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 Cliff Grizzard

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