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September 10, 2013
ANGLERS EMBRACE COOL SPELL
All week anglers have been wiping sweat, awaiting the cool snap now in
progress. The change now underway suits Kentucky Lake anglers just fine.
No doubt the nip in the air will put a glide in the stride of bass,
crappie and catfishermen that have been negotiating heat and humidity
for over a week.
The weatherman indicates nighttime temps will fall into the low 50ís as
the weekend approaches with low 80ís during the day, which is a
significant change as the last week of summer fades away to fall. The
autumn season officially arrive on Sunday, September 22nd.
Fishermen can expect some foggy mornings if winds die down as the cooler
air resting over the warm waters of Kentucky Lake will likely produce
Surface temperatures this week climbed up to the 86 degree for a day or
two but will be dropping throughout the weekend in the wake of the cool
snap and north winds. Look for surface temps to fall back into the upper
70ís by early next week.
Several thunderstorms passed through the area this week but runoff has
been minimal and water color remains clear throughout most of the
reservoir. A little stain was present in the main Tennessee River
channel but Big Sandy embayment is relatively clear.
Lake levels were falling on a gradual basis throughout the week and down
several inches from last week at this time. Projections for the weekend
at Kentucky Dam will be 356.1. Upstream at New Johnsonville readings
will be in the 355.9 range.
Kentucky Lakeís fishing scene has been pretty decent for crappie anglers
who continue to find decent stringers in the 9 to 13 foot depth range
where submerged stakebeds and brushpiles are located.
Iíve had decent catches this week but found fish to be somewhat
scattered in the midrange depths. Landing two or three fish at a spot
was the pattern with an occasional bed producing 6 or 7 but it took
several stops on a route to rack up hefty numbers.
Tipping red and chartreuse jigs with Berkley Power Bait seemed to work
best for me, although a few fish took a jig and minnow combo now and
I dropped back to some deeper ledges a midday and found improved action
from structure residing in the 17 foot depth range but near deeper
water. Using double hook bottom bumping rigs armed with shiner minnows
seemed to appeal to the deeper fish once the sun was straight overhead
and cloud cover melted away.
Watch for crappie to take on a more aggressive attitude by next week as
the cooler surface temperatures will bring more shad to the shallow
areas. Fish will transition toward midrange depths in greater numbers
once surface temps back into the mid 70ís.
Bass were still chasing shad in grassbeds this week, a fall pattern that
will likely hold up for several more weeks. Lower lake levels will
continue to expose more aquatic vegetation, providing anglers ample
areas to toss topwater, spinnerbaits, and weedless frogs or floating
The outsides of island rims and grassbeds on flats will be good places
to work Texas rigged worms too or rip a Rattle Trap style lure now and
The summer patterns of big crankbaits, Carolina rigged craws, big Texas
rigged worms, and jig and pig combos are still producing too. Gravel
banks will soon be more appealing to topwater presentations in the early
mornings and late afternoons.
Catfishermen were enjoying some nice catches this week as the slow
current was playing their song. Depths of 30 to 40 feet were accounting
for some hefty blue and channel cats along the main Tennessee River
Working those submerged feeder creeks and indentions were the catís meow
for boaters using nightcrawlers, chicken liver, and skipjack for bait.
Summer is saying goodbye next week but it feels like fall may have
slipped in the door a week early. Ah, the jacket mornings and shirt
sleeve afternoons are here already!
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.