724 Outdoors

Fishing report
Kentucky/Barkley (5/18/2017)
Submitted by: Dave Stewart
Email Author

May 18, 2017

Kentucky Lake:  Water Level at Kentucky Dam
- 361.07  Surface Temperature - 75

Lake Barkley:  Water Level at Barkley Dam -
361.10  Surface Temperature - 75
Both lakes are 2 feet over summer pool and
on a slow draw down.  Kentucky Dam was spilling at an average rate of 73,000 cfs
this afternoon.  Barkley Dam was spilling at an average rate of 49,000 cfs this
The latest lake
levels , current flows and forecasts for all the TVA lakes can be found at

Current Conditions:  We have had a
mixture of some windy days and some calmer days over the past week since my last
report.  As I mentioned in last week's report, the lakes are on a slow draw down
to summer pool levels.  The TVA is projecting that we should reach summer pool
levels sometime Sunday.  We have taken bass from the shallow spawning areas to
the ledges over the past week so the "pick a pattern" continues but we are
seeing more numbers of bass starting to show up on the ledges this past week,
particularly the early ledges.  There is still a lot of debris floating on both
lakes so you need to use caution when running the lakes and keep a look out for
this debris.

The forecast for tomorrow (Friday) is for a high of
82/night time low of 70 with a 50% chance of thunderstorms with wind SSW at 10. 
The Saturday forecast is showing a high of 86/night time low of 67 with an 80%
chance of thunderstorms with wind S at 14.  Sunday's forecast is calling for a
post frontal high of 74/night time low of 56 with an 80% chance of morning
thunderstorms and wind WNW at 7.  The extended forecast into next mid week is
calling for high's in the 70's and low's in the 50's.  Keep an eye on the sky
this weekend for the thunderstorms, expect high winds near the storms with
locally heavy rains and lightning. 

Largemouth are being taken in the shallows around brush as they
are guarding nests with topwater lures, Texas rigged creature baits, tube jigs
and jigs.  Largemouth are being taken on channel banks and secondary points just
outside the spawning areas on crank baits, spinner baits, chatter baits,
Carolina and Texas rigged creature baits, jigs and shaky heads. Largemouth are
being taken on primary points on the main lake as well as on creek channel
ledges on the main lake and in the mouths of creeks and bays. These fish are
being taken on deep diving crank baits, spoons, Carolina rigged creature baits
and jigs.
Smallmouth Bass: Smallmouth are
being taken on the main lake points and secondary points in the front halves of
the creeks and bays. These fish are being taken on jigs, Carolina rigged
creature baits and tube jigs. The numbers are low but some nice fish have been
taken. Some Smallmouth are also being taken on ledges (same as above) on crank
baits, jigs and Carolina rigged creature baits.
Productive Lures: Some of the
productive lures reported this week are Bandit crank baits in
rootbeer/chartruese, Rapala DT 6 and DT 10 in bluegill and sexy shad, Strike
King XD 6 in Tennessee shad, sexy shad and chartruese sexy shad, D&L jigs in
"oops" and cumberland craw, Slong's jigs in cumberland craw, Last Cast jigs in
green pumpkin, Charmer shakey head jigs and Slong's shakey head jigs with
Charmer shakey head worms in green pumpkin and watermelon/pruple and Zoom trick
worm in green pumpkin/purple and watermelon/purple, Slong's spinner baits in
white/chartruese, Chatter baits in white/chartruese, Charmer lizards and timber
pups on Texas rigs and Carolina rigs in green pumpkin and green pumpkin/blue.

Crappie: Most of the Crappie are
on post spawn patterns and holding over cover in 10-15 feet of water by trolling
small crankbaits or vertically fishing with small jigs and minnow/jig
combinations. The are still some Crappie around brush and stake beds in 5-8 ft
of water but they are scattered.
Bluegill/Red Ear: Bluegills and Red Ears are being taken
around brush shallow as well as on the spawning flats in the creeks and bays in
3-5 ft of water. Crickets, red worms, wax worms under bobbers and red worms and
pinched night crawlers fish on bottom on split shot rig is the ticket for these
tasty fish.

 Catfish: Channel catfish are being taken on rocky banks
and points as well as rocky bottom flats in the creeks and bays. These fish are
being taken on night crawlers fished under bobbers and on bottom rigs. Some good
numbers of these fish are being reported.


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, Picasso lures, Bag 5
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 and Stratos 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 day.
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 Commanche
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.
Available Dates:
May: Sorry, I am booked up.
June: 16, 26, 27, 28
July:  A number of available dates, make your reservation now
to get the date(s) you want.
Of course I am taking reservations for the rest of the season
also through November. Make your reservations now to get the dates you
Captain Dave Stewart
Bass Buster
Guide Service
"Fish With a Professional"
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