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Kentucky Afield Outdoors: Muskellunge fishing heats up in fall


This is the first installment of a series of articles titled "Fall Fishing Festival" profiling the productive fishing on Kentucky's lakes, rivers and streams in fall.

by: Kevin Kelly

FRANKFORT, Ky. - The angler's whoop traveled fast and loud over the water from the back of Buck Creek on Cave Run Lake.

Bringing a trophy muskellunge to the boat after a spirited fight uncorks raw emotions and provides a unique sense of satisfaction. In this instance, the 45-inch torpedo of a fish was a new personal best and the fourth muskellunge the angler had caught on this cool, calm, overcast Friday in mid-September.

The fall muskellunge bite was turning on, and word traveled quickly. A parking lot that held only a handful of boat trailers on Friday was full Saturday.

The shorter days, brisk nights and cooler water temperatures of early fall trigger the start of some of the finest muskellunge fishing of the year. Cave Run, Green River and Buckhorn lakes are the state's top destinations as they have been proven to produce trophy fish.

Sarah Terry's state record came from Cave Run Lake in November 2008 and was caught on a silver Double Cowgirl in-line spinner. It measured 54 inches and 47 pounds.

In recent weeks, muskellunge at Cave Run Lake have been caught in the backs of creeks - many of them loaded with weed beds and standing timber - in 8 feet of water or less. Weed beds near submerged channels and across the main lake flats aren't to be overlooked either.

"They're looking for one thing: food to get them through the winter," said Tom Timmermann, northeastern fisheries district program coordinator with the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources. "Bass go through a heavy feeding period in the fall, and muskellunge do the same thing."

Smaller lures such as a 4-inch balsa wood crankbait in silver and black, a


This story was posted on 2014-10-02 09:21:36
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Kentucky Afield Outdoors: Cave Run Muskie



2014-10-02 - Cave Run Lake - Photo by Lee McClellan. Dave Dreves, fisheries program coordinator for the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources, holds a 48.5-inch-long, 42-pound muskellunge captured and released during population sampling on Cave Run Lake this past spring. Fall is one of the most productive times to catch trophy muskellunge like this one from Cave Run Lake, Green River Lake and Buckhorn Lake.
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