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October 10, 2013
WILD WEATHER WEEK FADES BACK TO FALL
Kentucky Lakeís fishing scene had a wild ride earlier this week when a
cold front, preceded by some heavy rain, roared in the door last
weekend. By Monday morning a brisk north wind put a chill in the air
when high skies dominated.
Anglers were digging deep in the closet for heavy jackets too and by
Tuesday a mean northeast wind thrust its force on the backside of the
cold front. For most anglers fishing really fell off for a few days as
bass, crappie and catfish seemed to have a mood swing that went in the
Fall is normally a season of stability. However, this week got off to an
unusual start due to inclimate weather but by midweek temperatures had
rebounded with light winds and sunny days returning to the fishing
It appears nice weather will remain in the forecast as the weekend
approaches with warmer temperatures expected through next week.
Surface temperatures responded to the cool snap and fell a few degrees
earlier this week. Readings dropped to the 71 to 73 degree range earlier
in the week but were climbing slowly toward the 75 degree reading at
Water color was dingy in the upper end of some bays after the heavy
rains on Sunday sent muddy runoff into the reservoir. At midweek dingy
water was clearing in the backwaters while the main lake area of Big
Sandy remained clear. A slight stain is present in the main Tennessee
River channel but itís a good color for fishing.
Lake levels rose a few inches in the aftermath of the heavy rains but
were stable at midweek. TVAís projection for the weekend shows an
elevation of 355.1 at Kentucky Dam and upstream at New Johnsonville,
which is about normal for this time of year.
Boaters are reminded to follow channel markers this time of year and
resist the temptation to take shortcuts across shallow flats like they
did back in the summer. Once Kentucky Lake nears its low ebb of winter
pool elevation thereís an abundance of shallow sandbars that can play
havoc with your lower unit and boat hull.
Crappie took a roller coaster ride this week as the weather change
seemed to have a negative impact for a few days. Itís normal to see
action decrease once a cold front arrives and passes through and thatís
just what happened as fish turned off on Monday and Tuesday when high
barometric pressure teamed with stubborn north winds that switched to
northeast at times.
Fish had been hitting pretty good in midrange depths but backed off for
a few days until winds switched back to the south on Wednesday and
stimulated activity. At midweek crappie were hitting pretty good as some
good stringers were taken in stakebeds and brushpiles in a variety of
I found increased numbers of fish at midweek choosing main lake ledges
in the 14 to 16 foot depths. It appeared some of the shallow crappie had
moved back to deeper water for a few days as fish were taking minnows
and jigs fished on double hook bottom bumping rigs.
There are still some scattered fish occupying those midrange structures,
however. Depths of 8 to 13 feet were producing a few fish and more fish
will return to those areas on days when cloud cover returns or rainy
days return to the fishing scene.
Popular jig colors were gold or silver with sparkle, motor oil and some
white/orange, black/chartreuse and red/black just to name a few. Tipping
jigs with Berkley Power Bait nibbles in chartreuse or white have worked
well but adding a minnow at times has enticed some finicky fish to bite
Bass action diminished too during the height of the cold front earlier
this week as those northeast winds seemed to deal a devastating blow for
a few days. By midweek bass rebounded too and showed some interest as
fish were chasing shad over shallow flats on the main lake.
Activity improved on some of the main lake ledges where anglers were
tossing Texas rigged worms and crankbaits and scoring consistent
catches, although bigger fish have been hard to come by.
Shad seemed to return to shallow flats at midweek and were schooling and
some surface action was underway from aggressive bass. Tossing Rattle
Trap style crankbaits was working well as was some topwater at times.
The bite resumed in grassbeds at midweek as well after a short hiatus
earlier in the week when the high skies seemed to send the bass deep in
the grass with a lethargic mood. Minnows were more active and bass were
feeding on them around the parameters of grassbeds.
Catfishing showed signs of improvement the last few days with more fish
biting in the 35 to 40 foot depth range along the main river channel.
Some decent stringers were caught by anglers using nightcrawlers and cut
It appears the cold front has come and gone and mild to warm weather
will dominate the fishing scene for the next week. It was a mean start
to a week that has turned out to be pretty nice.
Also check out our past:
Kentucky Lake Fishing Reports
Steve McCadams is one of the nation's best known Crappie Fishermen
and a full time resident of Paris, Tennessee. Steve is also a
professional hunting and fishing guide here in the Paris Landing area.