Doug Wynn's Fishing Report
For December 23, 2017Report for Kentucky Lake and Lake Barkley
Merry Christmas from the Excel Bay Pro 203 "Fishful Thinking".
I want to extend my sincere desire that each and every one of my readers has a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Days on the lake have been few and far between due to a case of pneumonia catching up with me. I'm on the mend but just running in a lower gear.
We hit the lake Thursday morning to find a wall of fog that didn't want to give up its hold. My cousin Rickie and I were wanting to try some sauger tactics on the river ledges but when we left the protection of Jonathan Creek, we found not only heavier fog but also a steady and building wind from the southeast.
KY Lake and a southeast wind is not a good combination on the main lake but we decided to give it a go.
As we side-scanned and down imaged the chosen area, it became apparent pretty quick the sauger had decided our chosen spot was not to their liking. Being the hard core and hard headed guys we are, we rigged up double minnow rigs and started the pursuit anyway. Our 2 hour quest saw the fog ease up just enough to occasionally see the bank but also the wind continued to built from the forecast 4 mph.
I won't get started about my true feelings for most weathermen and women but I will say my trust for them is on an even plane with politicians--way low!! The combination of rough water and fog made us both much more comfortable wearing our PFDs all day. I use an inflatable vest that is both manual and auto deploy. It is comfortable enough to not be noticed when wearing it. BTW, they would make a great gift for the fisherman on your list.
When we started seeing the front deck get washed from the now 2-3 foot rollers and whitecaps, discretion won out and we reeled up our gear. More side-scanning and down imaging closer to the bank located fish but it was much too rough to be braving the 44 degree water. The sauger will have to wait for another day. We headed for the ramp with our tails tucked from a skunk day.
Yes it does happen to me too.
From the sight of the spider riggers we saw that day, they were doing more searching than finding. I am getting some decent reports of keeper crappie on minnows and jigs in deeper water around cover. The fish seem to be orienting more to the drops than the flats now. A good starting place would be at creek channel areas toward the mouth of major creeks.
Let me put this in right here: I report on what I see and what I get from first hand accounts of trusted friends.
Right now Barkley seems to be giving more more quality fish in bigger numbers. Try spider rigging with minnows and jigs tipped with Crappie Nibbles (I'm a firm believer in using the scent bait for crappie) in 15-25 feet of water around cover and ledges. Some reports from longliners say they are still catching several but that has fallen off due to the lower water temperatures.
That said, Barkley is not to be feared this time of the year but must be boated with extreme respect and caution. The lake level has been holding at less than 355 feet and that is going to present hazards that must be avoided.
I don't have any reports on other species so those will have to wait for later.
Again, my thanks go out to each of my readers. Shawn (the owner of this site) and I have talked about the response I have gotten in just the time since I started my reports in May. I have folks come up to me at the store, restaurants, and at the lake and tell me how much they enjoy my ramblings.
I write what I think folks want to read and try to give as much information about fishing as I can without giving away GPS waypoints. I do get asked for those too. Sorry, those are mine to keep.
Best wishes for a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
There will be fishermen brave enough to fish the extreme cold we will see for the near future. Safety should be first on your list. Wear that PFD that's molding in your storage box. It won't help you if you take a dunking if it's not on.
I did have an interesting mishap with our year old male house cat, Bleau, on Thursday. Being a typical cat, he's always looking to get into something he's not supposed to. He has learned to open any door in our house that isn't locked. We have handles instead of door knobs and one jump and hang on and the door is open. He's working on self-serve on the ice maker. He also likes to prowl around any box he can find.
I had been tying leaders on our kitchen snack bar and had them all tidy in a small box. Bleau just had to check it out and a shiny red thing on a foot of 20 pound test line was to his liking. The only problem was the shiny red thing was a number 6 treble hook. As I was sitting in my recliner taking a breathing treatment for the pneumonia, a streak of lightening that looked a lot like Bleau went thru the living room and up the stairs at at least 1000 mph.
I knew what was up. I was able to catch him and with my wife Vicki holding him, get the two sides of the hook out. One was thru his lip, the other completely thru his tongue. Long story short, the disaster was averted with the help of a small pair of side cutters. Bleau is fine and back to his old (and new) tricks. I did learn that the kitchen bar shouldn't be used for tying leaders.
Seasons Greetings from our slice of Heaven.