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Brought to you by: Fishtale Lodge
November 19, 2009
 

Fall fishing has held up well for bass and crappie anglers this week who had another stretch of nice weather up until midweek when temps cooled some and a little wind and light rain entered the picture.

Up until Tuesday the weather had been unusually warm as above average temps lingered for over two weeks. Still, things are too bad and really back to near normal for this time of year.

Lake levels have been falling slowly all week but TVA really pulled the plug late last week and into the weekend with the reservoir falling some six inches each day. The drawdown has diminished the last few days and should fall slowly throughout the weekend and into next week.

Present elevation at Kentucky Dam is 355.9. Upstream at New Johnsonville Steam Plant lake levels are forecasted to be in the 356.3 range as the weekend approaches. Those readings are down considerably from a week ago at this time.

Surface temps have cooled slightly but still remain in the 56 to 59 degree range and last weekend were still holding in the 60 degree range, which is above normal for this time of year. Water color is clear.

Crappie were biting in a variety of depths as anglers reported some decent catches in 11 to 13 foot zones around brush and manmade structure. A few fish were holding on to those deep ledges and residing in the 17 to 20 foot zones too.

Portions of West Sandy around Britton Ford and in other bays such as Bass Bay, Cane, White Oak, and Leatherwood some fish were choosing to stay in 7 to 9 foot zones. Anglers there reported pretty good stringers as they vertical fished jigs.

Crappie should settle down this weekend and next week as this past week saw a drastic drawdown that may have had fish on the move at times. Itís not unusual for crappie to pack their bags and move on when quick changes in lake levels occur.

Watch for those midrange stakebeds and drop-offs to produce good numbers in the days ahead barring any drastic changes in the weather and lake levels.

Bass anglers are still scoring decent stringers with a lot of fish relating to submerged grass beds. A lot of aquatic vegetation is present on the Tennessee River flats and edges of islands where tossing a white spinnerbait with gold willow leaf blades will get you a bite.

Shallow running crankbaits, rattle traps, and jerk baits are working too. There is a lot more grass out there than most anglers thought and the lower lake levels are exposing acres of it. A lot of milfoil was breaking loose this week and floating down the main channel in huge patches as the current from falling lake levels likely dislodged it.

Watch for those gravel bank patterns to bounce back as lake levels return to near normal in the days ahead. Last week a lot of bass move up to shallow shoreline cover but that has all changed as the fish are back to gravel points and rocky banks chasing shad on shallow flats too.

 
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Steve McCadams
 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.
Gone Fishing

 
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