FLW Outdoors Fishing Report 13: Tournament Fishing

Jun 9, 2011

Murray, KY – Scott Ellison's FLW Outdoors Weekly Fishing Report. Learn about catching crappie and tournament fishing on Kentucky Lake.

Scott Ellison here, with the FLW Outdoors Weekly Fishing Report.

Even as hot as it's been, fishing has been good on Kentucky Lake. Starting at the bank and working out, fishermen have been catching fair to good numbers of catfish and bluegills along riprapped banks, points and other places where there's a sloping bottom. Earthworms and nightcrawlers are the best producers.

Eric Benson of Benson's Sporting Goods told me he was surprised by the number of crappies coming in now as compared to the spring. That's when most crappies are usually caught. But the spring weather was so erratic with all the storms, flooding and cool temperatures, that a lot of crappies didn't get caught. Eric says that crappies are getting caught now. Anglers using bow-mounted spider rigs with sixteenth-ounce jigs are doing the most damage. They're following ledges in 10 to 12 feet of water, and using their trolling motors to follow the contours.

A few shellcrackers are still bedding, but the spawn is about over for them. Not so for bluegills. Some really nice stringers are coming in now, and the bluegill spawn will continue for another week or so before it fizzles out.

Bass fishing is the big story on Kentucky Lake. Next week, starting on Thursday, the Walmart FLW Outdoors tour comes to Marshall County and Murray. The top anglers in the country will be here, and you can expect to see some huge stringers. Local favorites like Dan Morehead of Paducah, Ramie Colson junior of Cadiz, and David Young of Mayfield have an edge, but they'll be fishing against some of the best structure fishermen in the land, including Larry Nixon, Terry Bolton, Mark Rose, Scott Suggs, Anthony Gagliardi and Andy Morgan.

Dan Morehead says that 80 to 85 pounds in four days of fishing might win it all, because Kentucky Lake's current has been inconsistent lately and that's what rules the ledge fishing this time of year. I'm actually thinking that somebody's going to have to bump 100 pounds, or 25 pounds a day to take home the $100,000 grand prize. That's what it's been taking to win local tournaments. Any way you cut it, there's going to be some eye-popping stringers and big bass brought to the scales.

The weigh-ins the first two days, Thursday and Friday, June 16th and 17th, will be held at Kentucky Dam marina starting at 2:30 each afternoon. Saturday and Sunday, June 18th and 19th, the weigh-ins move to the CFSB Center in Murray, at 4 p.m. Each day. Also, the CFSB Center will host the outdoor expo, which is open free to the public. If you didn't get to the outdoor expo that took place with the college national championship in Murray in early April, you probably heard about how great it was, so don't miss this one. It's a family-oriented show with lots of games and rides for your kids or grandkids, and plenty of sponsor products giveaways. It's open from noon to four in the CFSB Center on Saturday, June 18 and Sunday, June 19. And remember, it's free to the public.

This Saturday, June 11, from 4 to 6 p.m., the Chevy pros are at Country Chevrolet for a meet and greet. Larry Nixon, Jimmy Houston, Bryan Thrift, Jay Yelas, Luke Clausen and other Chevy pros are slated to be there.

Also Saturday, from 2 to 4 p.m., Walmart stores in Murray, Mayfield, Benton, Paducah and Princeton host visits by FLW Outdoors pros including George Cochran, Ron Shuffield, Wesley Strader, Randall Tharp, JT Kenney, and Scott Canterbury.

That's it for now. Summer is definitely here and the fish are biting, but it's also hot and sunny. Be sure to drink plenty of water to ward off heat stroke, and don't forget the sunscreen lotion. Use at least 30 SPF, and spread it on your exposed face, neck and arms every once in a while during the day. It will keep you from getting sunburned or, worse, getting melanoma skin cancer.

This is Scott Ellison signing off for FLW Outdoors. See you at the weigh-in and outdoor expo.

Scott Ellison is a lifelong fisherman and FLW Outdoors College Fishing Promotions Manager.