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Archived Fishing Report

Dave Stewart's Fishing Report

Written by Dave Stewart | Originally published 04/17/2003

Kentucky Lake - Water elevation at the dam:  358.30   Surface Temperature: 59

Lake Barkley - Water elevation at the dam:  358.30  Surface Temperature: 60
 
The lakes continued to rise over the past week and are now less than a foot from summer pool levels.  This past week has been a variety of weather here in the lakes area.  We have had some beautiful although windy days and some post frontal days that we even had a little snow mixed in with sleet and cold rain.  

Cold fronts seem to be coming thru the area about every 3 days and the fishing before the fronts has been great and the fishing after the fronts has been somewhat slow which or course is normal for the passage of spring cold fronts.  On the prefrontal days the Largemouth Bass and Crappie fishing has been very good and of course on the post frontal days the fishing has slowed although with a little persistence a person can still catch some fish.  
 
The Largemouth Bass are in the bays and being taken on secondary creek channel points and on the flats as well as in the small cuts.  The water is in the mustard flowers and some good bass are being taken around the flowers with some reports of some fish being taken near the buck brush.  The staging bass on the secondary points are being taken on crankbaits, Carolina and Texas rigged baby brush hogs, tubes, and lizards as well as jerk baits and jignpig.  The fish on the flats are being taken on lipless crankbaits, spinnerbaits, and some reports of a topwater bite are starting to come in using buzzbaits.  

The fish in the cuts near the flowers and brush are being taken on spinnerbaits, Texas rigged tubes and lizards, jignpig, trick worms, and buzzbaits.  Some Largemouth are already on the beds but the majority are still on late prespawn feeding.  On the prefrontal days more keeper Largemouth are now being caught than has been reported over the past few weeks.  
 
The Smallmouth Bass are being taken on main lake points and the first secondary points in the bays although the bite is still not as good as it should be.  These fish are being taken on small crankbaits, jerkbaits, jignpig, Carolina rigged baby brush hogs, and Texas rigged tubes.  
 
Some of the productive lures that have been reported for bass this week are:  Rapala Shadraps in black/silver, Bandit crankbaits in rootbeer/chartruese, Smithwick Rogues in black/gold, Zoom Baby Brush Hogs in green pumpkin, watermelon/red, and pumpkin, Zoom and Hook Some Bass lizards in green pumpkin, pumpkin, and plum, Xwire Spinnerbaits and Hook Some Bass spinnerbaits in blue glimmer, Rattletraps in blue/chrome, Snoozer's tubes in road kill cammo, blue sapphire, and watermelon burst, and Zoom trick worms in bubblegum.
 
The Crappie have been very good on both lakes.  The Crappie are starting to spawn with some fish still staging.  The majority of the Crappie should be spawning this next week.  Crappie are being caught near shallow brush and other wood cover by casting jigs and jigs and minnows under bobbers.  Staging crappie are being caught near the creek channels and on the flats in 8-12 ft of water near wood cover.  

These fish are being taken by vertically fishing minnows and small jigs.  Most reports indicate that the best bite is by just using a minnow under a bobber both up shallow and by drifting them over the deeper wood cover on the flats.  
 
The Bluegill are active around docks and also in shallow coves near the mustard flowers.  These fish are being taken by fishing wax worms and red worms both under bobbers and on bottom rigs.  
 
Some Channel Catfish are starting to show up on the flats and are being taken on nightcrawlers fished under bobbers and on bottom rigs.

More Kentucky Lake Fishing Reports

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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!

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Coyote
Photo by Melodie Cunningham

This coyote stares down a local photographer in the Land Between The Lakes area. Coyotes are quite common in this region.