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August 22, 2012
COOL MORNINGS STIMULATE ANGLERS
Nice cool mornings have greeted anglers lately with a touch of fall in
the air at a time when hot and humid conditions are the norm. In fact,
below average temperatures lingered last week and most of this week
giving fishermen a lucky break as August isnít known for cool spells.
Surface temperatures reflected the cool snap and have fallen into the 81
to 83 degree range this week, which is down several inches since last
weekend. Water color remains clear.
Lake levels have been falling slowly the last few days after sleeping
somewhat above normal the past two weeks. Observed elevation going into
the weekend will be 357.6 at Kentucky Dam, which down several inches
from last week at this time. Upstream at New Johnsonville lake levels
will be in the 357.5 range.
Overall fishing conditions have been pretty good this week as crappie
seemed to perk up compared to last week at this time. A few more fish
were hitting in the 9 to 14 foot depth range.
Boats working live minnows and jigs tipped with minnows around submerged
stakebeds and brushpiles experienced improvement, a likely response to
cooler conditions that may have seen more schools of shad moving up to
There were some crappie taken on the deeper sides of main lake ledges
too as the 18 to 20 foot depth range gave up more fish this week as
Mixed in with crappie on the deep ledges have been some pretty good
numbers of bluegill too. A few boats have learned to catch the decent
size bluegill too while tightlining redworms or waxworms on those deep
Bass action has been fair this week and the increasing acreage of
aquatic vegetation continues to offer bass fishermen an abundance of
visible structure. Most areas with five feet of water or less along the
Tennessee River area from Paris Landing south are covered with a
combination of pondweed and spiny leaf naiad, not to mention the lush
green Eurasian watermilfoil.
Finding minnows working the grass has been the key to finding bass as
all the vegetation looks fishy. A variety of presentations have paid
dividends such as weedless frogs and rats fish over the thicker matts of
grass while chartreuse and blue skirted spinnerbaits worked on the
parameters have been popular choices.
Topwater has worked well at times such as Rebelís Pop-R, Heddonís Zara
spook, and Stormís Chugg-Bug. Floating worms and fluke style baits have
been good choices too, not to mention buzzbaits.
Texas rigged worms have paid off around some deeper grass or near breaks
in the grassbeds where shallow and deep water are close together.
Several boats are avoiding the grass patterns and targeting drop-offs
with the likes of big Texas rigged worms, deep diving crankbaits, some
drop-shot finesse presentations and jig and craw combos. The ledge
anglers are also tossing Carolina rigged worms and craws with moderate
Catfishing showed some improvement at midweek once current picked up in
the main river channel. Last week the catfish were slow most days as
anglers were not seeing any current but that changed earlier this week
when TVA began pulling more water.
Boats working the edge of the main river channel this week were tying
into more fish. Depths of 20 to 35 feet were producing and baits of
choice ranged from chicken livers to nightcrawlers and big minnows.
Will fall come early this year? That would suit anglers just fine and
the last week or so with cool mornings and low humidity sure made it
feel like fall was fast approaching.
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.