April 18, 2018
Kentucky Lake: Water Level at Kentucky Dam – 359.25 Surface Temperature – 58
Lake Barkley: Water Level at Barkley Dam – 359.10 Surface Temperature – 57
Both lakes are at summer pool. Kentucky Dam was spilling at an average rate of 121,900 cfs this afternoon. Barkley Dam was spilling at an average rate of 48,100 this afternoon.
The latest lake levels , current flows and forecasts for all the TVA lakes can be found at http://www.tva.com/river/lakeinfo/index.htm.
Current Conditions: The weather pattern we have been having over the past few weeks continued to plague the lakes area this past week. We continue to get a cold fronts coming through the area about every 2-3 days. We get one or two days of nice above normal temperatures and then a couple of days of well below normal temperatures. We are still getting a lot of wind with most of these fronts also. We did have one day this week on Tuesday that it actually got very warm and the wind did not blow. Yesterday it was again very warm but the wind was blowing at 20-30 with gusts to 40. The accompanied cold front came through last night and we woke up to the cold again with north winds at 15-20. Obviously we did not get on the water every day over the past week but did manage a couple of days. The bass bite still remains scattered over all with more small fish being taken than keeper plus sized fish. Example: The USA Bassin tournament last Saturday had 31 boats with no 5 fish limits weighed. 25 of those 31 boats had one fish or less. The Legacy Marine tournament last Sunday had 28 boats, of which 2 limits were weighed in and of the 28 boats, 23 boats had 2 fish or less.
What I have seen is that keeper plus sized fish are biting in the creeks and bays during the afternoon on the warm prefrontal days after the water temperatures warm up in the shallows. These fish are holding off the banks in the ditch channels off the spawning areas and moving up when the water warms up. The smaller fish are relating more to the channel banks and secondary points in the creeks and bays..
The forecast for tomorrow (Friday) is for a morning low of 35/afternoon high of 64 with wind ENE at 8. Saturday’s forecast is showing a morning low of 41/afternoon high of 68 with wind E at 10. Sunday’s forecast is calling for a morning low of 50/afternoon high of 59 with a 100% chance of rain and wind E at 10-15. The extended forecast thru mid next week is for daytime high’s in the low 60’s/night time low’s around 50 with a chance of rain each day. The latter part of next week is showing more favorable temperatures in the 70’s with more stable weather….I and I am sure many others are praying that this forecast is right because I and many other anglers are tired of this March weather and are ready for spring.
LARGEMOUTH BASS: Largemouth are being taken on creek channel banks and secondary points in the creeks and bays on Alabama rigs, jigs, Carolina and Texas rigged creature baits and crank baits. Largemouth are also being taken in the shallows in the creeks and bays on jerk baits, spinner baits, vibrating jigs and lipless crank baits as well as Texas rigged creature baits and whacky rigged worms.
SMALLMOUTH BASS: Some Smallmouth are being taken on main lake points and gravel bars near deep water on the main lake as well as on secondary points and gravel banks in the front halves of the creeks and bays. These fish are being taken on jigs, Carolina rigged creature baits and tube jigs.
PRODUCTIVE LURES: Rapala DT 10 and DT 6 crank baits in crawdad patterns, Rapala Shad Raps in crawdad patterns, Strike King Red Eye Shad in red craw, chrome sexy shad and blue chrome, Rattle Traps in red craw and chrome shad, D&L jigs in black blue and oops patterns, Slong’s jigs in black blue, Slong’s spinner baits in white/chartreuse, Lucky Craft suspending jerk baits in chartreuse shad and aurora black, vibrating jigs in blue glimmer with pearl white swim bait trailer, Charmer 6″ lizards in watermelon/red and green pumpkin and Yamamoto senkos rigged whacky style in variations of green pumpkin.
Crappie: Crappie are being reported as scattered also, with most of the fish still being taken in the 10-15 ft range over submerged cover by vertically fishing with minnow rigs and small jigs tipped with Crappie nibbles. These fish are still staging in the creeks and bays with an occasional few fish being taken in 8-10 ft of water on warmer afternoons with some moving even shallower on the warmer afternoons.
IF YOU ARE PLANNING ON VISITING OUR LAKES I HIGHLY RECOMMEND THE FOLLOWING BUSINESSES FOR ALL YOUR FISHING AND BOATING NEEDS:
Fisherman’s Headquarters is located in Draffenville at the U.S. 68/U.S. 641 triangle, or the Draffenville “Y”. FHQ stocks everything an angler could need, from live bait, hooks and bobbers to top of the line tournament bass tackle. More than a “bait and tackle” store, Fisherman’s Headquarters is a true “pro shop”, offering advice, training and special order assistance not found online or at the big box retailers. Services even include custom electronics training and installation. The store offers a wide variety of nationally known brands as well as many regional and hard to find items we use on Kentucky and Barkley Lakes. They stock many of the products I rely on daily, such as Charmer Baits, Slong’s lures and Pro Tungsten weights. From bluegill to bass and catfish to crappie, FHQ has you covered! Stop by and visit or phone 270-527-5938.
Jet-A-Marina: If you have a problem with your boat while you are visiting our great fisheries, let me recommend you have the folks in the service department at Jet-a-Marina check it out. These folks have a well known reputation for trying to keep our visitors on the water while they are here if they can possibly do so, especially you tournament anglers. Hopefully you will not need this kind of assistance but if you do, you can find Jet-a-Marina located on U.S. 62 in Calvert City, just a couple of miles north of Kentucky Dam. Jet-a-Marina also has a great showroom for all your boating accessories and check out the new Ranger bass boats too as well as bulk oil at rock bottom prices for your engine. Phone: 270-395-4030
For those of you that may not be familiar with my service: I am a full time catch and release bass fishing guide. I only guide for bass. I have been guiding for bass full time on these lakes for over 20 years and bass fishing the lakes for over 30 years. I do not go out and fish panfish for 4 or 5 days and then try to guide on bass for one or two days.
No one knows everything the bass are doing but one thing is for sure, if you only fish for bass day in and day out, you will have a lot better idea of what they are doing and also be familiar with all the different techniques it takes to be a successful bass angler.
If you book with my service, you will have me as your guide and you will be guided in the comfort of a late model Z522 Ranger Comanche equipped with Lowrance HDS electronics and top of the line tackle. I provide just for fun bass fishing trips, tournament preparation trips, focused teaching trips and technique instruction. If you are in need of a bass fishing guide give me a call or drop me an email.
April: Sorry I am booked up.
May: 1, 2, 4, 15, 16,17, 24
June: 12, 13, 21 25, 27, 28, 29
I am also taking reservations also for July, August, September, October and November.
Captain Dave Stewart
Bass Buster Guide Service
“Fish With A Professional”