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Archived Fishing Report

Dave Stewart's Fishing Report

Written by Dave Stewart | Originally published 04/07/2016

Kentucky Lake:  Water Level at Kentucky Dam - 357.37  Surface Temperature - 59

Lake Barkley:  Water Level at Barkley Dam - 357.50  Surface Temperature - 59

Both lakes are one and one half foot below summer pool.  Kentucky Dam was generating at an average rate of 61,000 cfs this afternoon.  Barkley Dam was generating at an average rate of 18,000 cfs this afternoon.  

General Conditions:  Well, it has been another week of cold fronts and wind.  We are getting cold fronts about every 48 hours it seems and of course this brings with it some cold nights and windy days.  The water temperatures have not improved since last week and the TVA has been playing with the lake levels.  This time yesterday the lakes were 6 inches higher than they are at this time today.  I mentioned in last week's report we are ahead of schedule on the rise in the lake levels to summer pool and it appears the TVA will be fluctuating the present levels up and down until we get back on schedule with the River Operating System Schedule.  According to the TVA River Operating Schedule, we would normally be at winter pool (354) on April 1st and then have a gradual rise over the month to reach summer pool (359) by the end of the month.  We can only wait and see how long the TVA will be playing the levels up and down.  Of course this fluctuation coupled with all these cold fronts is not doing anything to improve the spotty bass fishing and it is holding off the Crappie from spawning in numbers.  It isn't that we are not catching bass, but with so many patterns

LARGEMOUTH BASS: Largemouth are being taken on main lake points and on the main lake channel banks. These fish are being taken on Alabama rigs, suspending jerk baits, slow rolled crank baits, slow rolled lipless crank baits, jigs and shaky heads. Largemouth are being taken on ledges on the main lake and inside the mouths of the deeper creeks and bays on Alabama rigs and jigs. Largemouth are being taken on secondary channel points and banks inside the creeks and bays on Alabama rigs, slow rolled crank baits, slow rolled lipless crank baits, suspending jerk baits, jigs and shaky heads. On warm days there are active fish being taken shallow in the creeks and bays on shallow running crank baits, spinner baits and lipless crank baits as a number of fish are roaming the shallows with the water up. 
SMALLMOUTH BASS: Smallmouth are being taken on gravel main lake points and channel banks. Smallmouth are also being taken on gravel secondary channel points and channel banks inside the mouths of the creeks and bays. These fish are now spawning and can be taken on slow rolled crank baits, tube jigs, grubs and jigs.
PRODUCTIVE LURES: Some of the productive lures reported this week are: Picasso bait ball rigs with Keitech swim baits in pro blue and French pearl as well as Big Hammer swim baits in pearl and sexy smelt, Lucky Craft slender pointer suspending jerk baits in pearl ayu and aurora black, Spro suspending jerk baits table rock shad and Rapala xraps in black/silver , Rapala shadraps in demon and red craw, Strike King DT 6 and10 in red crawdad, Strike King red eye shad in red craw and chrome sexy shad, Bill Lewis rattle traps in red crawdad patterns, Spro Little John shallow crankbaits in spring craw and black/chartruese, Strike King 2.5 square bill crankbaits in black/chartreuse, Slong's spinner baits in white/chartreuse,  Slong’s football jig in Cumberland craw, D&L baby advantage jig in Cumberland craw, Slong’s shaky head jigs with Charmer shaky head worm in green pumpkin.
CRAPPIE: Crappie are being taken over brush piles in 8-10 ft of water in the creeks and bays by vertically fishing with minnows and jigs tipped with minnows. Crappie are also moving shallow and some are being taken on banks around cover in 4-6 feet of water. The Crappie fishing was reported as slow this week with the wind and fluctuating lake levels but I would expect the Crappie to start moving shallow in large numbers this next week if the water temperatures rise.

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Kentucky Lake Sunset
Photo by Shawn Dunnaway

Sunsets at Kentucky Lake are special. You can find them on the eastern banks of Kentucky Lake looking west across a mile of ripples and waves. There's nothing quite like experiencing a sunset on Kentucky Lake.