Kentucky Lake is a major navigable reservoir along the Tennessee River in Kentucky and Tennessee. Created in 1944 by the Tennessee Valley Authority's impounding of the Tennessee River by Kentucky Dam, the 160,309-acre (649 km2) lake is the largest artificial lake by surface area in the United States east of the Mississippi River (though not the largest by volume; Lake Cumberland holds that distinction).
The lake is at summer pool, clear and around 76 degrees. Bass appear to be nearing the end of the spawn. Plastics in melon and green pumpkin are catching good numbers of keeper size fish with the occasional big fish. Try the outside points of spawning areas. Walleye fishing has been good over the last few days. Windy points are most productive. Try drifting crawlers around 8 to 10 feet. Crappie are being caught casting curly tails and tubes along shoreline cover. White bass are also taking spinners and grubs. White or chartreuse works well. A few quality bluegill are being caught on crickets, worms or popeye jig/wax worm combinations. Black or brown works well. Give catfish a try in the upper river. The Cane Run area can be very productive. Livers, dough baits and crawlers are fish catchers. Fish the edges of channel bends and bars.
Guide Steve McCadams (731-642-0360) says crappie have been biting jigs tipped with minnows and Berkley PowerBait around brush piles and stake beds in 12-15 feet of water. Popular jig colors have been black/chartreuse, pink/chartreuse, white/blue with sparkles, black/red and motor oil with glitter. Most of the good bass are being caught deep. Anglers are working big crankbaits and Carolina-rigged worms and craws around main-lake ledges. Some hefty stringers of channel cats were taken this week around the piers at Paris Landing bridge, with current stimulating the bite. Night crawlers have been the bait of choice.
from Guide Steve McCadams
Bass anglers are fishing the main-lake ledges with big, deep-diving crankbaits, Texas-rigged worms and Carolina-rigged craws. Most bass tournaments are being won with five-bass limits that weigh 23-24 pounds. With the high lake levels this week, a few bass have also been caught shallow. Most shallow-water bass anglers are using spinnerbaits, topwater lures and Texas-rigged plastics around buck bushes and blowdowns. Crappie fishing has been good around stake beds and brush piles in 12-16 feet of water. Crappie are biting jigs tipped with live minnows or Berkley PowerBait. Some late-bedding bluegill have been biting crickets and wax worms in 5-7 feet.
from Guide Steve McCadams
Good stringers of crappie are being caught on jigs tipped with Berkley Power Bait and live minnows. Most anglers are fishing vertically around the deeper stake beds and brush piles. The most popular jig colors have been purple and clear sparkle, red/chartreuse sparkle and black/chartreuse. Bluegill and shellcracker are still biting red worms, crickets and wax worms. But with the fish more scattered, most anglers are just picking up a few here and there instead of catching 20-30 to a spot like they were a week ago. Bass anglers are having success throwing topwater jerk baits and pitching or flipping Texas-rigged plastics around shallow, visible cover. A lot of bass are also beginning to back off the banks to the secondary ledges where big deep-diving crankbaits, Alabama Rigs, Carolina-rigged craws and big Texas-rigged worms are working well. Catfish anglers are having lots of success using night crawlers around rocky banks. (731-642-0360)
from Guide Steve McCadams
Bass have entered the post-spawn phase and seem to be moving toward the ledges. Many anglers are having success in those areas with Carolina-rigged craws, jig-and-pig combos and deep-diving crankbaits. The bluegill are bedding, and anglers have been catching big stringers of them around the buck bushes and deeper gravel flats and points. The bluegill have been a little deeper than normal due to the high lake levels, but they can still be caught in bunches once you locate them. Most anglers are tossing crickets and wax worms under slip bobbers in 5-7 feet. Some good shellcracker were caught around the buck bushes last week, but they have disappeared this week. Catfish are biting night crawlers and cut bait around the bluffs. Crappie fishermen have struggled again this week, with many crappie having left the banks and the remaining shallow fish scattered throughout the flooded shoreline cover.
Largemouth bass are being caught near brush on crank and spinner baits in about 15 feet of water. Crappie bite is steady on minnows. Look for stumps and brush.
Just as the crappie were moving into the shallow buck brush to spawn, a cold front moved in and put the good springtime fishing on hold. Once the weather stabilizes, the fish should move back into the super-shallow water. But for now, most crappie are being caught around brush piles and stake beds in 6-10 feet. The crappie have been finicky, but some anglers are still having decent luck with black/chartreuse and pink/white jigs. Bass fishing has also been a bit of a gamble since the cold front moved into the area. The fish are scattered along the shoreline in shallow cover and have been fairly stubborn. Texas-rigged plastics and soft-plastic swim baits are producing a few. On warmer days, a few bass are also being caught on spinnerbaits. The fishing should improve dramatically once the weather stabilizes.
Guide Steve McCadams (731-642-0360) says the crappie fishing has improved quite a bit with anglers having lots of success catching fish from the buck brush. The fishing never gets simpler on Kentucky Lake than it is right now. Just use a live minnow 2-3 feet deep beneath a float and wait for the float to sink. Expect to catch a little bit of everything — crappie, bass, catfish, yellow bass, drum, etc. The water level rose dramatically last week, scattering the bass into the shallow, flooded vegetation. But anglers are still catching quite a few on Texas-rigged plastics and soft-plastic jerk baits.
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