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Kentucky Lake, Lake Barkley Fishing
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Archived Fishing Report

Dave Stewart's Fishing Report

Written by Dave Stewart | Originally published 06/26/2003

Kentucky Lake:  Water level at Ky Dam - 359.09   Surface Temperature - 78

Lake Barkley:  Water level at Barkley Dam - 359.20  Surface Temperature - 78
 
Summer came to the lakes area over the past week in true style with hot humid days and light winds.  Both lakes have been generating power at the dams which translates into some current to help out with the ledge fishing.  The willow fly hatches are in full bloom right now and these translate into some fun fishing for pan fish and some bass early and late around the hatches.  Look for these hatches to be near willow trees on both lakes.  The hatches on Kentucky Lake appear to be heavier and more numerous.
 
The Largemouth Bass are being taken on two primary patterns.  There are Largemouth Bass being caught shallow near grass beds and wood cover in the bays as they feed on schools of fry.  This pattern is especially prevalent on Kentucky Lake.  These fish are being taken on topwater lures early and late in the day as well as Texas rigged tubes, creature baits, and lizards, small shallow and medium running crankbaits, spinnerbaits, and jignpig.

Largemouth Bass are also established on classic summer patterns and are being taken off creek and main lake ledges, humps, and roadbeds using deep running crankbaits, jignpig, and  Carolina rigged tubes, worms, and lizards.  Some very good catches are coming in on these deep water patterns.  
 
The Smallmouth Bass are being caught on the LBL side of Kentucky Lake early and late in the day as they feed on schools of fry, especially near rocky points and grass beds.  These fish are being taken on topwater lures, Texas rigged tubes, and medium running crankbaits.  Smallmouth are also being taken on the main lake ledges and humps on the same baits being used for the Largemouth Bass.  

The night time Smallmouth fishing is getting into full swing and some good fish are being taken on the LBL side of Kentucky Lake by fishing the points with dark colored spinnerbaits, Texas rigged tubes, and jignpig. 
 
Some of the productive bass lures reported this week are:  Lunker buzz baits in white/chartruese, Yozuri chug baits in natural shad and chartruese, Rebel Pop R in black/chrome, Bandit crankbaits in rootbeer and blue/chartruese, Norman crankbaits in blue/chartruese and Tennessee Shad, Hook Some Bass spinnerbaits in blue glimmer, Hook Some Bass jigs in black/blue with blue trailer, Zoom brush hogs in watermelon/red, Hook Some Bass brush hounds in green pumpkin and junebug, Zoom lizards in watermelon/red, and Snoozer tubes in road kill cammo and smoke/purple.   
 
The White Bass are active near the mouths of the bays and along the main lake river ledges.  I still have not seen any large jumps of long duration but some small short jumps are present.  These fish are being taken on roostertails and small spoons cast into the feeding fish or by trolling medium and deep running crankbaits with a small spinner or spoon on a trailing leader.  
 
The Bluegill are active early and late around docks with wood cover and along rocky creek channel banks.  The Bluegill are also feeding heavily around the willow fly hatches.  These fish are being taken on wax worms, red worms, and crickets fished under bobbers.  
 
The Catfish are being taken on the lakes at night by bottom fishing near the river channels with leeches, large minnows, and cut baits. 

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.


Sunset
Photo by Nancy Smith

There are few things more beautiful than a Kentucky Lake sunset. The best place to view a sunset is from the western shore of Land Between The Lakes.