Fishing Scene Changing with Weather
Written by Steve McCadams | Originally published 02/14/2013
Kentucky Lake’s winter fishing scene has been changing with the weather lately as a mixture of conditions have greeted anglers. Some days a cold brisk wind has been too challenging for most and catch rates were down drastically. However, for those fishermen fortunate enough to have a flexible schedule and pick their days, some pretty good catches awaited them. February is a month known for changing weather. There will be a few nice days mixed in but anglers know they have to tolerate some nasty winds and cold temperatures this time of year and conditions can change at the drop of a hat. Some nice stringers of crappie were taken lately by anglers working the main lake ledges where deep water venues have been holding decent numbers. Productive areas have been deep sides of drop-offs where submerged stumps and brush in the 17 to 20 foot depth range has paid dividends. Most anglers are tightlining jigs around the deep structure but a few boats reported success while using bottom bumping, double-hook minnow rigs as well. Some of the more popular color jigs skirts have ranged from blue/chartreuse to red/chartreuse and some chartreuse with red glitter and variations of sparkle scale tubes. Tipping jigs with Berkley Power Bait Gulp and Crappie Nibbles has enhanced strikes too. Most of the fish in the Paris Landing area have come from deep ledges but there have been some crappie in midrange brushpiles and stakebeds up West Sandy and in some other bays such as Cypress and Standing Rock where 8 to 12 foot depths produced fish. Surface temperatures have been holding in the 45 to 47 degree range. Water color is good with a slight stain in places. Lake levels this week are still sleeping above normal winter pool and have fluctuated a few inches after some heavy rains but not too drastic for anglers. Projections for the weekend will be 354.4 at Kentucky Dam but almost two feet higher in the New Johnsonville area where readings will be 356.2. For the last several weeks significant current has been present in the main channel as a lot of water has been pushing through the system. A few bass have been taken lately and the winter fishery continues to attract a lot of boats to the cold weather approach whereas in times past very few ventured out until early March. Anglers have learned to master the cold weather patterns and generally speaking, winters are not as cold as they used to be. Most anglers are tossing Carolina rigged craws, jig and pig combs, or slowly retrieving crankbaits. Some success has come from slow rolling spinnerbaits around shallow flats where fragments of grass remain. Rattle traps have been productive as have shallow running shad colored crankbaits. Points with big chunk rock or rip-rap shorelines have been holding some fish too. Not much to report from the sauger fishery as very few fish have been taken this winter. Most anglers feel the fish are just not there for the taking.
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