Trout Waters

 

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TROUT REGULATIONS

 

SPORT FISH SPECIES Daily Limit Possession Limit Minimum Size Limit
Rainbow trout816none
Brown trout1216”
Brook trout**Catch and release only (except on Cumberland River)

* Possession limit is double the daily creel limit on these species
**See “Catch and Release Brook Trout Streams” and also special regulations for Cumberland River.

All trout stockings in streams, lakes or tailwaters are subject to weather and road conditions. Check the monthly trout stocking schedule.

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EXCEPTIONS

On the Dix River (Herrington Lake tailwaters), fishing is permitted with artificial baits only. Live or organic bait may not be possessed while fishing this two-mile section of Dix River. The only public access to Dix River below Herrington Dam is via the Kentucky River.

The Cumberland River below Lake Cumberland from the Wolf Creek Dam downstream to the Tennessee state line is a trophy brown trout area. A 20-inch minimum size limit and a one fish daily creel limit applies to brown trout. A 15- to 20-inch protective slot limit on rainbow trout is in effect for the same section of the Cumberland River. All rainbow trout caught between 15 and 20 inches must be immediately released. Only one rainbow trout of the five fish daily creel limit may be longer than 20 inches. Brook trout have a 1 fish daily creel limit with 15-inch minimum size limit. All anglers on this section of the Cumberland River, including all tributary streams up to the first riffle and all of Hatchery Creek, must now possess a valid Kentucky trout permit (regardless of species sought). Anglers may not chum or cull trout.

On Hatchery Creek in Russell County, the upper section as designated by signs has a 5 trout aggregate daily creel limit. The newly constructed lower section is open for catch and release only for all trout species and only artificial baits may be used.

The lower boundary of the lower section of Hatchery Creek is delineated as a straight line between opposite points where Hatchery Creek meets the main stem of the Cumberland River.

Get permission

Many of the streams listed in this guide are located on, or adjacent to, privately owned lands. Anyone entering upon or crossing private property must have the permission of the land owner.

On Paint Creek in Johnson County (Paintsville Lake tailwater), there is a 16-inch minimum size limit and one fish daily creel limit on trout from the KY 40 bridge downstream to the first U.S. 460 bridge crossing. Only artificial baits may be used.

On Chimney Top Creek, including Right Fork Chimney Top Creek (Wolfe County), there is a 16-inch minimum size limit and one fish daily creel limit for brown trout and only artificial baits may be used.

On Trammel Creek in Allen County, there is a 16-inch minimum size limit and a one fish daily creel limit on brown trout and a five fish daily creel limit on rainbow trout. There is no harvest of trout during the catch and release season from Oct. 1 through March 31.

 

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TROUT STOCKING STREAMS

 

The streams listed in this section are stocked with rainbow trout by the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources (KDFWR) and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service during the months indicated. Brown trout are stocked once each year for a put-grow-take fishery. All trout are produced at Wolf Creek National Fish Hatchery. View monthly trout stockings here.


CATCH AND RELEASE STREAMS

Some streams indicated in the table have a catch and release season (no harvest) from October 1 through March 31, except in Swift Camp Creek where the catch and release season is October 1 through May 31. Only artificial baits may be used during the catch and release season and all trout caught must be immediately released.

 

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STREAMS

 

STATEWIDE STREAMS County Total
Rainbows
Months Total
Browns
Catch and Release
(No Harvest) Season
Bark Camp Creek*Whitley3,7503,4,5,6,10500Oct. 1 - Mar. 31; 3.9 miles
Beaver CreekWayne1,5004,5,10Oct. 1 - Mar. 31; Hwy 90 bridge upstream to Hwy 200 bridge– 2.8 miles
Big Bone CreekBoone1,2004,5,10Oct. 1 - Mar. 31; inside the Big Bone Lick State Park – 2.1 miles
Big Caney CreekElliott2,5004,5,10250
Cane Creek*Laurel3,7503,4,5,6,10Oct. 1 - Mar. 31; 6.6 miles
Casey CreekTrigg8,0002,4,5,6,7,8,9,10Oct. 1 - Mar. 31; 3.6 miles
Chimney Top Creek*Wolfe10450
Clear CreekBell1,2004,10Oct. 1 - Mar. 31; Hwy 190 bridge down stream to mouth – 4.5 miles
Craney Creek*Rowan1,00010
East Fork, Indian Creek*Menifee3,8753,4,5,10400Oct. 1 - Mar. 31; 5.3 miles
East Fork, Little Sandy RiverBoyd4004
Elk Spring CreekWayne1,6004,5,6,10Oct. 1 - Mar. 31; 2.8 miles
Floyds ForkJefferson3,6003,4,10Oct. 1 - Mar. 31; US 60 downstream to
US 150 - 20 miles
Goose CreekCasey1,0004,5
Greasy CreekLeslie4004
Hatchery Creek (upper)Russell27,000monthly
Jennings CreekWarren7,0003,5,6,7,8,9,10500
Laurel CreekElliott2,7504,5,10250
Left Fork, Beaver CreekFloyd1,2004,5,10Oct. 1 - Mar. 31; Hwy 122 bridge upstream – 3.6 miles
Looney CreekHarlan1,5004,5,10700
Lynn Camp CreekHart2,5004,5,6,7,10
Middle Fork, Red River*Powell/Wolfe2,6003,4,5,10Oct. 1 - Mar. 31; inside of Natural Bridge State Park – 2.2 miles
North Fork, Triplett Creek*Rowan1,0503,4,5
Otter Creek, Fort Knox
Otter Creek ORA
Meade7,500
7,500
3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10
2,3,4,5,10,11
500
(fort only)
Oct. 1 - Mar. 31; Ft. Knox Military Reservation and Otter Creek ORA – 9.7 miles
Raven CreekHarrison4004
Right Fork, Beaver CreekFloyd1,2004,5,10
Right Fork, Buffalo CreekOwsley5004,5
Rock Creek*McCreary15,1253,4,5,6,9,10,11,12Oct. 1 - Mar. 31; Bell Farm bridge upstream to Tennessee border – 9.8 miles
Round Stone CreekHart2,8004,5,6,7, 8, 9,10200
Royal SpringsScott1,2005, 6,7
Russell ForkPike2,2504,5,10
Sinking CreekBreckinridge1,2004,5,6
Station Camp CreekEstill7504
Sturgeon CreekLee4004
Sulphur Spring CreekSimpson3,0004,5,6,7,8,9,10200
Swift Camp Creek*Wolfe1,0004,10Oct. 1 - May 31; within Clifty Wilderness Area – 8.0 miles
Trammel CreekAllen8,7504,5,6,7,8,9,10600Oct. 1 - Mar. 31 - 4.4 miles
Triplett CreekRowan1,2003,4,5
War Fork*Jackson2,5003,4,5,6,10
West Hickman Creek (Veteran's Park)Fayette1,0002,10
*Daniel Boone National Forest stream; stockings are not announced.

 

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TAILWATERS

 

Leave a note

When planning a boating trip, leave a note, or float plan, with someone to let them know where you are. Include your departure and expected return times, the waters where you will be boating, a description and/or license number of the vessel and where you can be reached in case of emergency.

The following tailwaters receive rainbow and brown trout. Stocking begins in spring and continues into the late fall; monthly totals will vary. Monthly schedules are available through Kentucky Fish and Wildlife by calling 1-800-858-1549 or clicking here.

TAILWATERS Total Rainbows Total Browns Months
Buckhorn5,00004,5,6,10,11
Carr Creek5,00004,5,6,10,11
Cave Run6,80004,5,6,10,11
Cumberland*157,20031,0004,5,6,7,8,9,10,11
Dewey4,00004,5,10,11
Fishtrap10,00004,5,6,10,11
Grayson5,00004,5,6,10,11
Herrington4,50001, 3,5,7,11
Laurel River5002503,4,5,6,10
Martins Fork3,75004,5,6,10,11
Nolin River9,00004,5,6,7,8,9,10,11
Paintsville20,0003004,5,6,7,8,9,10,11
Taylorsville3,00004,5,6,11
Yatesville2,25004,5,11
*Stocking dates for Cumberland River (Lake Cumberland tailwater) will not be announced. Also, triploid rainbow and brook trout are stocked in March.

THREAT TO TROUT FISHERIES

The invasive algae known as Didymo(Didymosphenia geminata) recently appeared in the Cumberland River (Lake Cumberland tailwater). Didymo, native to northern Europe and Canada, is a white, gray, light brown or beige mass on the stream bottom that resembles shag carpet. Didymo can choke the stream bottom with mats that cover up native plants and crowd out native insects that trout need for food. To prevent the spread of Didymo into other Kentucky tailwaters and streams, anglers who fish the Cumberland River and out-of-state waterways should:

  • Inspect all wading gear and boat hulls, livewells, lower units and trailers for any vegetation after leaving the water and remove.
  • If algae or vegetation is discovered later, 1. disinfect with a 2 percent solution of household bleach or, 2. a 5 percent solution of salt or, 3. you may also soak in undiluted vinegar. 4. Allow to air dry for at least 2 days.

 

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LAKES

 

The lakes below are stocked with rainbow trout in the months indicated. January-March stockings are scheduled based on weather and road conditions.

LAKES Acreage Total
Rainbows
Months
Alexandria Community Park Lake74,5002,3,11
Anderson Co. Community Park11,5002,3,11
Bert Combs364,0001,4,5,10
Beulah874,0001,4,5,10
James D. Beville Park31,5001,3,10
Bloomfield Park21,5002,3,11
Bob Noble Park64,5002,3,10
Boulder Pond, Parklands18003,10
Brickyard Pond102,7002,11
Camp Ernst254,5002,3,11
Cannon Creek2439,0002,10
Cherokee Park42,5002,3,10
Cranks Creek2195,0001,4,5,10
Eagle Lake192,0002,3,10,11
Easy Walker Park21,5002,3,11
Fagen Branch1262,0001,11
Fisherman’s Park #3 and #44 (2 lakes)3,0002,3,10
Fish Pond325,0001,4,5,10
Flemingsburg Old Reservoir112,7002, 11
Grant’s Branch224,0003
Highsplint62,7501,10
Greenbo18111,0002,10
Jacobson Park469,0002,3,10
Kentucky Horse Park Rolex Lake62,7002,11
Kess Creek Park Lake21,5002, 3, 10
Ky. River WMA Boone Tract, Six Acre Lake62,0002,10
Kingdom Come State Park32,5001,3,10
Leary Lake54,5002,3,11
Logan Hubble Park Lake94,5002,3,11
Lower Sportsman’s31,5002,3,10
Lusby21,5002,3,11
Madisonville City Park Lake South254,5002,3,10
Martin Co. Reservoir222,50011
Maysville-Mason Co. Park Lake122,7002,11
Metcalfe Co.225003
Middleton Mills Park, Long Pond11,5002,3,10
Middleton Mills Park, Shelterhouse11,5002,3,10
Mike Miller Park42,5002,3,10
Mill Creek416,0001,3,5,10
Millennium Park Pond21,5002,3,11
Martin Co. (Milo) Lake53,7502,11
Mingo21,5002,3,10
Morton’s Lake, Higginson/Henry WMA15002
Paintsville1,1394,5002
Panbowl756,0003,10
Panther Creek Park42,5002,3,10
Peabody WMA, Access Pond12,2501,11
Peabody WMA, Flycatcher Pond11,5001,11
Peabody WMA, Rob’s Pond111,5001,11
Pikeville City Lake242,5003,11
Pollywog42,5002,3,11
Prisoner’s42,5002,3,10
Rotary Park Lake11,5001,3,10
Sandy Watkins Park Lake31,0002
Scott Co. Park31,5002,3,11
Southgate21,5002,3,11
Southland Church Lake31,5002,3,10
Three Springs294,5001,3,11
Tom Wallace Park54,5002,3,10
Upper Sportsman’s72,3,10
Waverly Park54,5002,3,10
Waymond Morris Park Lake54,5002,3,10
Whitehall Park Lake64,5002,3,10
William F. Miles Angler Lake42,5002,3,10
William F. Miles Green Heron Lake11,5002,3,10
Wood Creek6728,0002,10
Yellow Creek Park31,5002,3,10

 

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OTHER AREAS

 

FORT CAMPBELL AND FORT KNOX

Little West Fork, Fletchers Fork and Kinser Pool on Fort Campbell (Tennessee portion) and Otter Creek on Fort Knox (Bullitt, Meade and Hardin counties) military reservations are stocked with rainbow or brown trout. Special fishing regulations apply and a post fishing permit is required in addition to a valid Kentucky fishing license and trout permit. Contact Community Recreation Division, Hunting and Fishing Unit, Fort Campbell, KY 42223-5000; phone: (270)798-9824 or Hunt Control Office, Fort Knox, KY; phone: (502) 624-2712.

CATCH AND RELEASE BROOK TROUT STREAMS

Four streams are catch and release only year-round and only artificial flies and lures with a single hook may be used on these streams:

  • Dog Fork – Wolfe County
  • Parched Corn Creek – Wolfe County
  • Poor Fork – Letcher County, from the headwaters to Hwy 932
  • Shillalah Creek – Bell County, outside the Cumberland Gap National Historic Park
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