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Archived Fishing Report

Dave Stewart's Fishing Report

Written by Dave Stewart | Originally published 05/15/2003

Kentucky Lake:  Water Level at the Dam - 366.58   Surface Temperature - 69

Lake Barkley:  Water Level at the Dam - 366.00  Surface Temperature - 69
The water levels continued to rise over the past week on both lakes and are still rising.  They are projected to rise about another foot over the next 24 hours.  Lake Barkley is muddy in the channel and the creeks are stained to heavily stained.  Kentucky Lake is stained in the channel and some of the bays are stained also.  There is still a lot of debris in Lake Barkley and some debris in Kentucky Lake.  Be careful running, especially on Lake Barkley.  
The Largemouth Bass are being taken on a number of patterns.  Some are being taken by flipping jigs, tubes, lizards, and sinking worms in and around buck brush as well as by burning spinnerbaits in these areas.  Some people are taking fish by working their boats way back in the flooded timber using the aforementioned lures.  

Some anglers are getting their fish by fishing the buck brush and vegatation that is now underwater using sinking worms and swimming jigs, creature baits and tubes.  There has been a lot of reports of fish being taken around the buck brush and also in the grass of people's yards that is now flooded by fishing buzzbaits, chug baits, and burning spinnerbaits.  

I have also received numerous reports of catches being taken on secondary points in the bays on crankbaits and Carolina rigged lizards.  With all the patterns that are working right now a person can just about take their pick on how they would like to fish.  
The Smallmouth Bass have been good this week with some large catches being reported.  These fish are being taken on main lake primary and secondary points on the east side of Kentucky Lake and also on secondary points in the bays.  These fish are being taken on Texas rigged tubes and tube jigs as well as small crankbaits.  
Some of the lures reported as productive this past week are:  Lunker Buzzbaits in white and chartruese, Rebel Pop R's in natural shad, Xwire and Hook Some Bass spinnerbaits in blue glimmer and white/chartruese, Snoozer tubes in road kill cammo, green pumpkin, and smoke/purple, Zoom and Hook Some Bass lizards in watermelon/red and green pumpkin, Zoom baby brush hogs in watermelon red and green pumpkin, Bandit crankbaits in rootbeer/chartruese, Lee Sison's Slim Willie D crankbait in Purple Sun, Hook Some Bass Deadstick worm in green pumpkin and pumpkin.
The Crappie are slow with very few reports of catches this past week.  What reports I have received indicate the fish that are being taken are coming from fishing vertically over creek channels in 10-15 ft of water using small minnows and minnow/jig combinations.
The Bluegill and Shellcrackers are very good right now and are being taken in coves with gravel bottoms with some vegetation present.  These fish are deeper than normal as they are still relating to their bedding areas that are flooded over with deeper water.  These fish are being taken by fishing wax worms and pinched nightcrawlers on bottom and also under bobbers.
The Catfish are in the bays and are being taken by fishing bottom rigs using nightcrawlers, leeches, and cut baits near rocky shorelines.  

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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.

Photo by Libby Mundy

This male eastern bluebird is looking for an insect to munch on. Easily spotted by binoculars, the males are bluer than the females which are mostly grey in color.