The Green River offers arguably the best chance in Kentucky to catch a stream smallmouth in excess of 18 inches, with potential for larger fish. “As long as you have good water quality, woody debris, and rocky substrate, you would be amazed at the fish quality. Best Smallmouth Rivers There are many good smallmouth hotspots across the country, but we've got maps, fishing tips, and contact info for local guides on ten of the best. Small, deep running crawfish-imitating crankbaits also work in these spots as do diminutive gold lipless crankbaits. Angler interest also indicates smallmouth fishing to be topnotch at this stream. It's nearing time for anglers to really see a dramatic increase in the quality of fish coming from Elkhorn Creek. The 5 best smallmouth rivers. A cold weather front can put a major damper on the bass bite. This Elk Venison Patty Melt Recipe makes the perfect wild game sandwich. Deep-running crawfish-colored crankbaits draw strikes fished above and below stream drops. Lake Barkley is a massive 58,000 acre lake spanning into Kentucky and Tennessee. Wading is easy and it’s all ways easier to cast a fly with your feet firmly … Green River smallmouths often strike subtly during the warm months. With the warm winds of June now here, stream smallmouth are settling into their summer patterns with water temperatures stabilizing in the mid 70s. Let the lure sit on bottom and let the current slowly move it while reeling in slack. If a local flow has water at least waist deep and a rocky bottom along with pools and riffles, it likely holds smallmouth bass. Size 4 is a great representation, because smallies tend to be territorial a flies that are white/red/silver are good. Big South Fork smallmouths often lurk under undercut sections of these boulders in summer. "I think you could pick about any area to float and it would be fairly productive for smallmouths. However I have seen these stream experts use bigger baits to catch bigger fish and the bigger baits seem to catch just as many small bass too. While catfish are still catfish, the difference between day and night tactics and strategies... Want to test the outer limits of your shooting skill? Stuck inside? Summer smallmouths often crush them just after striking the rock. The river has rebounded from the fish kill and angler success is very good. FRANKFORT, Ky. -A late spring following a brutally cold winter caused some hit and miss stream smallmouth fishing this past spring. Anglers are not only treated to excellent smallmouth fishing on the Gasper River, but may also enjoy a very scenic area as well. These webpages have oodles of information on access sites, articles describing the floating and fishing, fishing tips and printable maps. The best smallmouth baits for rivers and streams will vary with the conditions. Driving from Indy IN, I have be in Jacksonville FL on Sunday the 22nd, and would like to fish two SMALL streams via a canoe rental shuttle during that drive down. About halfway through this float, paddlers will notice a bluff rising in the distance when Meadow Creek meets the Green on the right. “The baitfish and smallmouth bass are in closer proximity. The Gasper River runs from the backwaters of the Barren River all the way to the Warren County line. The Cumberland River offers some 134.6 miles of smallmouth stream. During the summer, Otter Creek is filled with warm water species like smallmouth, Kentucky spotted bass, and various sunfish species, which can all be taken on popping bugs cast around logs and at … However, biologists with the KDFWR have started doing various studies to determine the success of spawning, health and longevity, as well as stocking needs and options. Check the flows at the Louisville District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Daily Lake Report webpage. 2179687.jpg. Sight Savvy: Different styles of bow sights each have their strengths—and weaknesses. The poor spawns and limited year-classes had finally caught up and most of the big fish from the earlier great reproduction years had been caught out or died of old age. Lake Barkley. As with most any fishery, the stream has seen up and down years with its smallmouths. Spun deer hair is a little softer and allow smallmouth to hang on a little longer. Best Smallmouth Fishing in KY Rivers and Streams? It's a mixed bag of largemouth and smallmouth. I'm looking in Kentucky / Tennessee for a good smallmouth stream for next week. High water and flooding has the opposite effect on the success of the spawn. The North and South forks are not as good as the main stem. "Historically, the Gasper River has been one of the best, if not the best, smallmouth stream in the southwestern district," said fisheries biolo. Information gained from the various research projects will be used to rank the best streams for smallmouths, determine management regulations, and develop stocking strategies. Releases from Green River Lake Dam dictate the fishing on the Green River below it. Those with Internet access can view and print the entire publication in PDF form at the KDFWR's Web site at www.kdfwr.state.ky.us. There has been only a limited amount of management done on smallmouths in our state streams. Although smallmouths can be found throughout the river, the upper Cumberland can be very productive. Clousers are a mainstay for smallmouth. The water temperature, clarity, and amount of flow all impact the smallmouth’s feeding behavior. Is something wrong with the creek? They will be collecting genetic information to determine which particular strains of smallmouths are doing best in individual areas. Around five or six years ago, there was a fish kill on a portion of the river. Anglers are required to gain landowner permission before portaging across private land. The Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources (KDFWR) is working to change that, though. People not used to fishing for smallmouth often struggle with trying to catch them. Read on for one near you. I have float-fished some of the sections near Williamsburg and have caught smallmouths. "We have collected smallmouths throughout the upper Cumberland River from Cumberland Falls to Bell County. Some "dandy smallmouths" turned up, according to Cummins. There were ample numbers of fish in the 16- to 18-inch range. I like small streams that require some dragging and wading. You'll need a cartridge that lives up to... Across the west, look to these areas to find aggressive bass. In fact, he has seen some in excess of 18 inches pulled from the creek. Some strains of smallmouths may be better suited for a particular type of habitat and water condition. If all else fails, rig a watermelon-colored 3-inch soft plastic stick bait on a small 1/8-ounce Shakey head and cast it upstream of a riffle. The KDFWR can be reached toll-free on the information line at (800) 858-1549. It has been a favorite with anglers for many years and has received much acclaim. Most fishing rods feature both an action and a power rating, but what do those ratings mean and how do you use them to select the right rod for different scenarios? Fishing for many species slows in the daytime hours during the heat of summer, but smallmouth bass who inhabit Kentucky streams bite willingly even on the hottest days. Good reproduction years in the early and mid-2000s produced a nice cohort of 14-inch and better stream smallmouth bass across Kentucky. The Kentucky Fish and Wildlife website at fw.ky.gov has two excellent resources for Kentucky anglers to locate and learn more about the smallmouth fishing streams in their area. gist Eric Cummins. Within the next one to two years, the creek should really start peaking for anglers. All Game & Fish subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. For daytrip stream fishing, I'd say the best smallmouth waters around Louisville are on the Elkhorn River. Plus, lower light intensity makes fish less wary. Now the creek is on the rebound. Let the lure tumble in the current and occasionally touch bottom and watch the line intently. Cummins said anglers can certainly catch fish up to 15 inches or even better. ", It's very difficult for biologists to rate the quality of the smallmouth fishery in the upper Cumberland because of the difficulty in obtaining survey data. Biologists know they will find that stocking will be the best fix for some streams. Robert Montgomery. Until then, the KDFWR has an excellent publication available for smallmouth enthusiasts. One of the best-known smallmouth streams in Kentucky is Elkhorn Creek. The Hobie MirageDrive 360 pedal propulsion system is the pinnacle of kayak control with more efficient fin designs, glide technology and allows the boat to be moved in any direction. Both the “Blue Water Trails” page and the “Stream Fisheries page” may be accessed here. A few cranks on the reel and the surface of the water explodes in a shower of water and a fighting fish. A four-wheel-drive vehicle is required to access some portions of the upper Cumberland area. Probe these areas with 4-inch straight-tailed finesse worms in the Okeechobee craw color rigged on 1/8-ounce leadheads. View Profile View Forum Posts View Articles Rate this article . Mouth to KY 573, Woods Pike bridge crossing: Skaggs Creek: Barren: 19.0: Yes : Slate … It holds numerous fish species including crappie, catfish, and of course largemouth and smallmouth bass making it an angling … This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets. Kentucky anglers who want to catch some feisty stream smallmouth bass summer should try these three floats. Ryan Kausing, fisheries technician for the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources, released a huge smallmouth bass captured during population sampling on Green River near Roachville Ford last spring. They are easy to catch once you understand their tendencies. Bam! The Cumberland River falls within the jurisdiction of district fisheries biologist John Williams. 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