July 25, 2016
This 160,300-acre Tennessee River impoundment spans two states. Ledge fishing has become legendary on the Tennessee River; summer is the time, and Kentucky Lake is the place. Intel on finding and catching Kentucky Lake bass is provided by FLW Tour angler and 2015 FLW Championship winner Brad Knight. Kentucky Lake is large and can get unfishable with strong winds, so the champion also has a backup plan
The ledge fishing is all about electronics. To keep us all on the same page, a "ledge" is not just the sharp drop into the river or a tributary channel; it can be any high spot — an underwater island, a hump, the side of a flat point — and the break into deeper water. "The key," according to Knight, "is with direct contact with the current. There is no magic depth because the depth of the lake changes so much from end to end. Scan the top, then the break of the 'ledge' with your side scan and down-scan." When Knight finds the concentration he is looking for, he starts with a deep-diving crankbait, then a swimbait if the bass are on the top of the ledge. If the bass are positioned on the break, Knight coaxes bites with a jig, a Texas-rigged worm, or a big (8 inch) structure spoon.
If the wind blows or it's rainy, head for a protected bay and look for "grass" (mostly hydrilla, but there is eelgrass and other vegetation) in 3 to 8 feet of water. Knight relies on topwaters and a swimbait on a jighead for the grass bite.
"Be patient searching ledges, and don't stop searching until you find a good concentration of bass. You can check out more structure in 1 hour with your electronics than you can fish in two days."
[navionics zoom="7" long="-88.0" lat="36.4"]