I remember back in the day when a group of friends would get together on the bank for an all night Kentucky catfishing fun. A fire was mandatory and laughs and stories nonstop. We all knew to bring our old and worn-out tackle to be on the safe side. Losing a rod and reel or two was sure to happen. A catfish or carp always seemed to steal at least one setup every year while we enjoyed the fire and the stories. Someone would hear the well-known sounds of a rod and reel scooting across the ground and through the gravels then the splash when it hit the water.
“There went somebody’s pole,” was the usual announcement. No one ever got too excited and oftentimes the announcement was followed by a laugh and a glance in the direction of where all our poles were lining the shoreline. They would be barely visible in the light of the waning Coleman lantern. We always procrastinated pumping up the lantern, so it had a hard time cutting through the darkness and fog that rose from the lake.
The Love of Night Fishing
The love of all night catfishing never left me and every summer I spend at least a couple nights and sometimes several on the bank fishing all night. Sometimes I do it alone and sometimes with a few friends. The nights are always more comfortable in the summer even turning cool by morning. The sounds are plenty and much different from the daytime sounds and it’s a relaxing way to fish. I think I will always enjoy it.
All you need for an all-night Kentucky catfishing trip is a good chair, some cold drinks a sandwich or some grub that can be cooked over the fire. Remember. A fire is mandatory. I take a little better gear than I did back in the day. A few rods and reels will do. I keep an eye on the poles these days a lot better than back then. Friends are always welcome and can be a great way to catch up and tell a few stories. Friends are always a plus when the fish refuse to bite.
It is always best to find a good location when fishing from shore. Open areas where you can spread out several rods is vital. You can bring some firewood with you or if available scavenge from the area. Of course, a spot where there are catfish in the summertime is preferable. I have chosen spots for their comfort alone, but I am always on the search for that spot that produce a few fish. With a little research, exploring and maybe a tip from fellow anglers you should be able to find that special place that you look forward to visiting each year.
Summertime Catfishing Lakes in Kentucky
Barren River Lake is known for its catfish numbers. It received an excellent rating by the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources. Barren River Lake is an excellent lake to spend a night fishing for the many catfish that lives there.
Yatesville Lake is a small Eastern Kentucky Lake and just 10 years old. This makes it more fertile than many other lakes in east Kentucky. Yatesville Lake is a shallow lake with an average depth of just 17 feet deep and catfish roam the flats looking for a meal when the sun goes down making it a great nighttime catfishing lake.
Kess Creek Park Lake is part of the Fishing in the Neighborhood program. It is a small lake located in Graves county near Mayfield Kentucky. The KDFWR stocks Kess Creek Park Lake up to 4 times per year with catchable catfish making it a great place to fish with easy access.
- The best way to keep chicken livers on your hook is to use sewing thread. Once the liver is on the hook place the end of your thread on the liver and slowly wrap it onto the liver. After a couple wraps a little more pressure can be applied. Wrap the liver onto the hook by making each wrap lay inside the hook bend. Fresh chicken livers that have never been frozen will stay on your hook best.
- A great way to keep your chicken livers fresh and ready to fish is with two coffee canisters. You can see it in the photo. One large and one small canister. Place the smaller canister inside the larger one and add ice around the smaller canister to keep the livers inside cold and fresh. Your livers will stay fresh and easy to access when the bite is on.
- Catfish will hide in deep-water channels and lakes near old creeks. You will have a chance of finding Kentucky catfish regardless of the bottom’s rock, mud, or clay content because catfish typically feed at shallower depths.
Nearly all rivers and lakes in the United States contain catfish. There will naturally be more in some bodies of water than others. When compared to other bodies of water, some will also have the larger giant catfish. It only depends on where you live and what body of water it is. However, if you are prepared to effectively fish for them, they are present and ready to be caught.