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Author Topic: Dale Hollow Campground  (Read 2783 times)

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DSchlact

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Dale Hollow Campground
« on: May 29, 2013, 04:42:02 PM »
We will be camping with the in-laws later this summer at Dale Hollow Campground.  I'm curious if it would be worth my while to tow the Gheenoe along for the trip.  I've never been on the Obey below the dam and would appreciate any guidance you all may have.  I'm guessing much depends on generation, etc...is it safe to assume that it is very similar to the Caney...which is very fishable from the Gheenoe under certain conditions, but better off wading at other times.  There appear to be ramps on the river...might even be one at the campground, but there are ramps on the Duck too and that's not my idea of a good place to run a Gheenoe for the most part.

Thanks in advance,
Dave

Travis C.

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Re: Dale Hollow Campground
« Reply #1 on: May 30, 2013, 08:32:45 AM »
On a generator it will be best for the boat and fishing in general. The lower end is always deep enough for a boat so you could run up from there but going from the top down there may some dragging involved with no water coming through.

With Center Hill not done, you'll probably have some windows to float and fishing is okay with streamers but probably better drifting nymphs over the bars on a generator. When there is no moving water in the pools you'll need to fish the structure like you would for bass. Don't forget the creek mouths either. On no generation....midges...midges....and midges.

There are some good fish still in there but you'll probably see more stocker-15/16" than anything else.

If they are running 2 gens go up to the Dam and fish into the boils from the wing wall...there are some BIG skippies that come up (18-20") which are fun on a fly. Closer you can get to the bottom you'll catch trout too.

If the Obey is running clear which is most the time and the Cumberland is muddy go to the end and fish the mudline in the Cumby. White's school up and ambush bait when that happens there.

DSchlact

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Re: Dale Hollow Campground
« Reply #2 on: May 30, 2013, 09:04:58 AM »
Thanks Travis - that is some great detail - appreciate the input very much!

Travis C.

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Re: Dale Hollow Campground
« Reply #3 on: May 30, 2013, 10:39:52 AM »
Thanks Travis - that is some great detail - appreciate the input very much!

No problem, I have had my best luck on a quasimodo type fly. Pretty much it's a copper beadhead olive pheasant tail with olive thread and ice dubbing. Size 16-20. Streamers throw big ugly's on the lower end below Peterman Bend and the island and smaller 10-6's buggers above that to the dam for numbers. 

The river is stocked with trout weekly year round so keep that in mind...as there are bigger browns swimming about.  ;)

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Re: Dale Hollow Campground
« Reply #4 on: May 30, 2013, 10:46:21 AM »
Dave If your staying at Lilly Dale it's a great campground, love that place! Bring your boat! NO matter what the Obey is doing there is Cumberland near by. There are several tribs that run into the Cumby in that area that would make great places to check out by boat. Where the Obey flows into the Cumby is also a great place to check out (think bigger fish). Obey fishes good for Trout. Like everywhere,, if you want to have a better experience you have to get away from the high traffic areas.  If you really want to explore, 30 min away is the Cumberland in KY below Wolf Creek Dam. That is a very diverse fishery and the Trout are doing better in there now...

The upper section of the Obey is too skinny for a gheenoe to run upstream on low water if there is no generation (you can drag it though) If there is a pulse, float down prior and ride the pulse back up. If they are running more then one gen STAY OFF UPPER SECTION OF THE RIVER!!!! Upper Obey under heavy generation is a death trap. 

I love fishing the Obey it's just a little far for me to drive for Stocker Trout most days. The area is spectacular. Don't forget Dale Hollow lake either. Lots of great fishing opportunities there as well.

Let us know how you do.
It is preoccupation with possessions, more than anything else, that prevents us from living freely and nobly. ~Thoreau

DSchlact

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Re: Dale Hollow Campground
« Reply #5 on: May 31, 2013, 10:15:30 AM »
We are actually staying at the campground right below the Dam - believe it is a Corp campground and right on the banks of the Obey.

Sounds like I will definitley be bringing the boat and its good to hear there are plenty of options depending on conditions.  Would love to get the kids onto some trout - stockers or otherwise...and I'm really looking forward to exploring both the Obey and Dale Hollow.  Hearing you guys talk makes me wish we had longer than 2-3 days to work with....might need to look at scheduling a "scouting" trip before the planned campout in mide July :)

Thanks again for the tips!
Dave

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Re: Dale Hollow Campground
« Reply #6 on: May 31, 2013, 10:19:23 AM »
Dave that is indeed the Lilly Dale Campground.
For the kids two things. 
1. Take them to the Fish Hatchery adjoining the campground. They'll have a ball there.
2. There is a creek "hatchery creek" that flows from the hatchery to the Obey. It's usually well stocked for the kids to have fun in.
It is preoccupation with possessions, more than anything else, that prevents us from living freely and nobly. ~Thoreau

bd

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Re: Dale Hollow Campground
« Reply #7 on: June 01, 2013, 06:56:40 PM »
The Obey can be a very different river depending on conditions. If the gens are off and the Cumberland is running high, the Cumberland will backfill almost all the way to Dale Hollow Dam.  Then you can run a Gheenoe whereever you want on no gens. It's almost like fishing stillwater though - very little flow. Usually I'll sight fish under those conditions - cruise around until I find a fish sipping midges and cast a small zebra midge to him and wait for him to find it. It's almost like bobber fishing.

On no gens with the Cumby low, the river will fall out fast and get very skinny.  At that point you will be able to go downstream in your Gheenoe but you will have a hard time running up.

If one gen is on, you can fish streamers, but I wouldn't really do it alone. It's a narrow river with a lot of trees and boulders along the banks. If you get hung up or hook a big fish, you really need a second pair of eyes to watch where you're going for safety.  A better choice might be to go to the lower end of the river and fish near the confluence for white bass and, um, other large fish that might be in there eating shad.

On two gens, it's not a safe river in my opinion - especially not forr fishing alone in a small boat. Go fish Dale Hollow or the Cumberland, or if you only have an hour or two to kill, you could wade the hatchery creek. 

Wading access on the Obey sucks.  On no gens, there is some access near the dam and at Moody's Ramp, but you can only really access a couple miles well by foot. A boat will get you to better fish.

Carry lots of midges because that's your forage base.  If they aren't sipping midges, a small wooly bugger or a clouser dace with a lot of flash should get some fish.


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Travis C.

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Re: Dale Hollow Campground
« Reply #8 on: June 02, 2013, 04:05:48 PM »
Dave that is indeed the Lilly Dale Campground.
For the kids two things. 
1. Take them to the Fish Hatchery adjoining the campground. They'll have a ball there.
2. There is a creek "hatchery creek" that flows from the hatchery to the Obey. It's usually well stocked for the kids to have fun in.

Lilly Dale is really nice but on the main lake up by Willow Grove Marina closer to mid-lake. The campground below the dam is just call Dale Hollow Dam campground off of Burkesville hwy (53) and Dale Hollow Dam road.

Hatchery Creek is a blast for kids and us non-kids when the water is screwed up on the Obey to at least feel a tug on the line.

Bring your boat and if the river isn't working out go put in on the main lake. Horse Creek isn't far and doesn't charge a user fee. Get a light and go drop it over by the Dam to catch some schooling lake rainbow's once the minnows come to it. That's a summer past time up there. 

bd

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Re: Dale Hollow Campground
« Reply #9 on: June 02, 2013, 05:19:51 PM »
You won't catch the lake rainbows on a fly in the summer.  The guys fishing under the lights by the dam are usually fishing about 40 feet down or more. I used to do this some when I was younger.

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Travis C.

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Re: Dale Hollow Campground
« Reply #10 on: June 02, 2013, 05:37:58 PM »
You won't catch the lake rainbows on a fly in the summer.  The guys fishing under the lights by the dam are usually fishing about 40 feet down or more. I used to do this some when I was younger.

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That's right. I forgot to mention that it is a live bait, jigging spoon or just a treble to jerk a shad on then drop it below the bait ball type endeavor.

You can still target fish on the lake unless you're solely after trout or like Mike said go to the Cumberland. The right hand side of the mouth on the Obey has always held football spots/largemouth  at the point that's created. Drag a craw colored weighted bugger from upstream down over that hump into the Obey would surely get thumped.

DSchlact

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Re: Dale Hollow Campground
« Reply #11 on: July 10, 2013, 11:27:19 PM »
Well, we leave Friday after work...are we goanna be blown out all weekend?  TVA says 2 or more gens running 24 hrs a day right now.

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Re: Dale Hollow Campground
« Reply #12 on: July 11, 2013, 06:26:40 AM »
If that's the schedule stay off the river. Go play on the lake. It's a great place to explore and fish.
It is preoccupation with possessions, more than anything else, that prevents us from living freely and nobly. ~Thoreau

Travis C.

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Re: Dale Hollow Campground
« Reply #13 on: July 11, 2013, 08:05:39 AM »
They are 2ft above the spillway crest right now lakeside.  :o

I would say keep the lake side your number 1 but check the river out before writing it off completely. There are so many factors involved rather than the Caney. We fished it once in the Spring where the water was completely over the fishing piers at the campground by a foot and actually tied the boat off to the big red warning sign after launching. Not saying do anything stupid but sometimes when they're pushing a lot of water it really isn't all that bad just high with volume. That trip we got into what would be slot rainbows on the Caney along wooded shoreline's and huge 18-21" skippies in the boils which were a blast. As long as there is no gate open then you should have comfortable water to get in away from the generators and a good hard seam to fish down from the wing wall. 

Just use good judgement.

I believe the closest launch lake side has a user fee. Not sure the name but its on the same side of the lake as the campground. You can go up to the Dam then across and take a left. Follow the signs to Horse Creek. Its not very far and no user fee.

DSchlact

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Re: Dale Hollow Campground
« Reply #14 on: July 11, 2013, 11:21:09 AM »
I won't completely write off the river, but it's definitley not looking good.  As Travis noted, the lake is still 2ft above the spillway and according to Corp site it is still rising  :o

Even if it somehow fell below spill level before Saturday which I'm sure is just a dream, I'm guessing they will be running 2 gens for a while to get the lake down closer to summer pool.

So...anyone know how to fish that lake :)

I haven't looked at the Cumberland...would that still be an option, or with this much water is it going to be too rough to be worth our while?

Thanks again for all the advice.
Dave