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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 08/21/2003

Kentucky Lake:  Water level at Ky Dam - 357.22   Surface Temperature - 85

Lake Barkley:  Water level at Barkley Dam - 357.15  Surface Temperature -85
The water levels on both lakes continues to drop slowly as the drawdown towards winter pool continues.  The heat indexes over the past week have been at or over 100 degrees almost every day so take heed and make sure you have plenty of water or Gatorade in the boat.  The coming weekend forecast looks good with temperatures dropping slightly back into the upper 80's after a cold front passage on Friday.  
The Largemouth Bass are primarily being taken on the main lake river and old creek channel ledges and humps by fishing deep running crankbaits, Carolina and Texas rigged large worms, lizards, creature baits, and tubes as well as jignpig.  Some schooling bass are starting to show up on the main lake flats and these fish are being taken on lipless crankbaits and spinnerbaits as they are feeding on schools of baitfish.  

There have been reports of some early morning and late evening catches on main lake points using topwater lures and crankbaits.  These two latter patterns are normally a prelude to the shad schools starting to move toward the bays which will start the transition from summer to early fall patterns.  This transition normally occurs in September which is only a couple of weeks away.  
The Smallmouth Bass are primarily being taken on the main lake points, river ledges and humps by fishing Carolina rigged tubes and creature baits as well as jignpig.  Some Smallmouth are also being taken early in the morning and late in the evening on main lake points on topwater lures and crankbaits.  Smallmouth are also being taken at night on main lake rocky points on jignpig and Carolina rigged tubes as well as dark colored spinnerbaits.  
Some of the productive lures reported this week are:  Lunker Buzzbaits in white, Rapala Shadraps in black/silver, Rapala DT16 in black/silver, Rattletraps in blue/chrome and black/chrome,  Zoom large ribbon tailed worms in Red Shad, Zoom Magnum lizards in watermelon/red, Hook Some Bass brush hounds in watermelon/red, Hook Some Bass jigs in black/blue and green pumpkin, Hook Some Bass spinnerbaits in blue glimmer and black/purple, and Snoozers tubes in road kill cammo, smoke/purple, and watermelon burst.  
The White Bass are active on main lake ledges and main lake flats near the ledges.  These fish are being taken on inline spinners and small spoons fished vertically along the ledges or by trolling these lures behind a crankbait on the adjacent flats.  
The Catfish bite seems to be best at night near the main river channels by bottom fishing with threadfin shad or cut baits.  
The Bluegill are active along deep rocky creek channel banks by fishing crickets and worms under bobbers in the 6-10 ft range.  Bluegill are also being taken at night around docks with lights using like rigs and 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.

Photo by Melodie Cunningham

When exploring the Elk and Bison Prairie in The Land Between The Lakes, it's always exciting to catch a glimpse of a bull like this one!