Commentary
2:28 am
Wed March 16, 2011

FLW Outdoors Fishing Report 3: High Water Remains an Issue

Murray, KY – Part 3 of the FLW Outdoors Fishing Report. Bass and crappie fishing in our region should be improving soon, but high water is an issue. Here's Scott Ellison with more.

LIKE THE STOCK MARKET, FISHING SUCCESS AT KENTUCKY LAKE HAS BEEN GOING UP AND DOWN LATELY. A COUPLE OF WEEKS AGO, I TOLD YOU THAT BASS FISHING HAD REALLY PICKED UP ON SHALLOW-DIVING CRANKBAITS ALONG RIPRAP BANKS, BUT THAT LITTLE SPURT OF GOOD FISHING HAS JUST ABOUT RUN ITS COURSE. ERIC BENSON AND BENSON'S SPORTING GOODS TELLS ME THAT FAIR STRINGERS OF BASS ARE STILL BEING CAUGHT ON CHARTREUSE MEDIUM-RUNNING CRANKBAITS, BUT NOT AS MANY AS A COUPLE OF WEEKS AGO. ERIC ALSO SAYS THAT LIPLESS CRANKBAITS SUCH AS RAT-L-TRAPS ARE PRODUCING A FEW BASS. YOU CAN COVER A LOT OF WATER IN A HURRY WITH THSE BAITS, AND THAT MAKES THEM GOOD SEARCH LURES FOR THE PRESPAWN PERIOD. THE FISH ARE STARTING TO ROAM IN FROM THE LEDGES TOWARD THE SPAWNING FLATS AND ARE BECOMING MORE AGGRESSIVE.

JULIE STUBBLEFIELD AT CYPRESS SPRINGS RESORT SAYS SHE'S ALSO HEARING REPORTS OF FAIR BASS FISHING, BUT THAT CRAPPIE ARE STILL DEEP AND SCATTERED.

THE BASS AND CRAPPIE FISHING SHOULD BE BLOWING WIDE OPEN ANY DAY NOW, BUT HIGH WATER IS THE ISSUE. ALTHOUGH THE WEATHER IS SUPPOSED TO GET STEADILY WARMER DURING THE NEXT SEVERAL DAYS, HIGH AND RISING WATER IS GOING TO CONTINUE TO HAVE AN ADVERSE EFFECT. USUALLY BY THIS TIME OF YEAR, THE LAKE IS AT ABOUT 354 FEET, BUT THIS SPRING IT'S AT 361 FEET AND RISING. THE RISE HAS BEEN FAIRLY GRADUAL; LET'S HOPE THE FALL WILL BE JUST AS GRADUAL, BECAUSE IF THE LAKE DROPS QUICKLY, IT WON'T DO THE SHALLOW FISHING ANY GOOD AT ALL. IF IT DOES DROP, LET'S HOPE IT LEVELS OUT AND STABILIZES BY THE END OF THE MONTH.

BILL TAYLOR, THE FLW OUTDOORS TOURNAMENT DIRECTOR, REALLY GOT INTO THE BASS A COUPLE OF WEEKS AGO ON CRANKBAITS, BUT LAST SUNDAY AFTERNOON HE AND BRIAN LINDBERG, OUR MAGAZINE CREATIVE DIRECTOR, HAD A TOUGH TIME OF IT FISHING THE MIDDLE AREA OF THE LAKE. BILL SAID THAT THE ONLY LURES THAT WORKED FOR THEM WERE JIGS, AND IT WAS PRETTY SLOW GOING AT THAT. NOT ONLY IS THE LAKE HIGH, BUT IT'S GETTING DIRTIER TOO. BILL AND BRIAN SPENT MOST OF THEIR TIME FISHING POINTS AND COVE MOUTHS WITH ROCK. THE BEST FISH OF THE TRIP WAS A 5-POUNDER THAT BILL CAUGHT.

AS FOR CRAPPIE, ERIC BENSON SAYS THE BIGGEST STRINGERS ARE STILL COMING FROM DEEPER WATER AROUND THE LEDGES, AND WE'RE TALKING ABOUT 15- OR 20-FISH STRINGERS. ONE OF HIS CUSTOMERS TOLD HIM THAT HE TRIED THE SHALLOW-WATER STUFF SATURDAY MORNING, BUT ONLY CAUGHT A COUPLE OF THROWBACKS. THEN HE MOVED OUT TO ABOUT 20 FEET DEEP AND CAUGHT A COUPLE OF DOZEN CRAPPIES.

HIGH WATER OR NOT, IF THE WEATHER CONTINUES TO WARM UP AS IT'S PREDICTED, CRAPPIES ARE GOING TO MOVE IN QUICKLY. THIS TIME NEXT WEEK, LOOK FOR THEM TO BE A LOT SHALLOWER THAN THEY ARE NOW. HIGH WATER IS THE WILD CARD, THOUGH. IF THE LAKE DOESN'T SETTLE DOWN INTO ITS NORMAL SPRING POOL, THE FISHING ISN'T GOING TO GET MUCH BETTER ANY TIME SOON.

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

 

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