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eku_brookie_biologist 05-18-2009 08:49 PM

KY Brook Trout
Has anyone ever had any luck catching Brook Trout in Kentucky? If so where and when? I am currently undertaking a project where i will analyze Kentucky's brook trout populations and then compare these populations to native Virginia populations to determine limiting factors for KY's brook trout populations. I am very interested in hearing first hand experiences with KY brook trout from any who have fishing in KY.

swipper 74 05-18-2009 09:06 PM

Boy, I'd like to know some info on this too. Making a trip to Kentucky Dam Village State Resort Park in July for the wife's family reunion, and I'll NEED to make time for myself and would love to do some fishing for brookies. I've dabbled with trying to get some info and have come up pretty empty handed, so any info would be appreciated! Good luck on your study by the way!

kytroutman 05-18-2009 09:20 PM

eku, there are only four (unless it has been changed by KDFW) brook trout streams maintained in KY. These are all C&R and are Dog Fork and Parched Corn Creek in Wolfe County, Shillalah Creek that runs from the Cumberland Gap National Park in Bell County and Poor Fork in Letcher County.

eku_brookie_biologist 05-18-2009 09:46 PM


Originally Posted by kytroutman (Post 67100)
eku, there are only four (unless it has been changed by KDFW) brook trout streams maintained in KY. These are all C&R and are Dog Fork and Parched Corn Creek in Wolfe County, Shillalah Creek that runs from the Cumberland Gap National Park in Bell County and Poor Fork in Letcher County.

I have been on all of these streams, but i was wondering if anyone has actually caught any brook trout in KY and when and where?

There is 6 streams in KY that have brookies, 4 of which you named are fishable. The other two are Bad Branch and Martin's Fork of the Cumberland.

Kytroutbum 05-18-2009 11:29 PM

I had been fishing Swift Camp and decided one day to explore Parched Corn due to the rumors of Brookies I heard. I caught one Brookie approximately 5-6 inches on Parched Corn fishing down from the ridge dividing it from Chimmney Top's drainage. It took an Alexandra wet fly swung under a limestone ledge just above one of the first areas used for camping. I stopped at that point it was the weekend and there were people coming into the area and setting up camp going down stream. With the stream being so small, being somewhat calloused growing up with Brookies in Michigan and my interest has been directed on the other side of the divide, I just never felt an interest in pursuing downstream from that point.

This was approximately 10-12 years ago. It was 2 years after the 1st planting of the Brown Trout fingerlings in Chimmney Top, if that helps give you a date. Fisheries People and Bluegrass TU did the planting of those Browns.

I have heard RUMORS that the Parched Corn fish were placed there by s "Bucket Biologist" many years ago. The fish were supposed to have come from Michigan. I've heard this RUMOR several places going back to the 1970's when I moved from Michigan and did grad work at Morehead. I vaguely remember Dr. Les Meade saying something along that line in one of his Field Ichthyology classes I was in at Morehead. I think the name of the "bucket Biologist" was mentioned but it escapes me. The nature of the dialogue and students with local ties gave me some degree of creditability to that rumor.

I am a retired seconday Science/ Biology Teacher with several Ichythology and Limnology classes. I'm available if you want me to take you to that area and help out some.

Randall Sale
the Kytroutbum

kytroutman 05-19-2009 08:31 AM

eku, I specified the four as "maintained" since the other two are basically inaccessible and I'm not sure the KDFW is still monitoring them. I have caught brookies in Shillalah Creek just outside the park boundaries at Cumberland Gap and must be accessed from private property. I have also fished the streams in Wolfe County after a trip to Red River Gorge but never caught brookies, only warpaints. I gave up on those streams after fighting the copperheads.

Mac 05-19-2009 10:59 AM

I did find this thread interesting because I spent a considerable amount of time last year pursuing this Kentucky Brook trout myth in at least two of the streams.

Last year I made multiple visits to Red River Gorge and bush whacked into the very tops of the headwaters of Dog Fork and Parched Corn Creek searching all the way to the tail waters. I will also add that bush whacking in Red River Gorge is like bush Whacking in the Smokies, Lots of Rhododendrons, large and small cliffs to climb down.

I dont claim to be the best fisherman in the area but I did spend a considerable amount of time on these two streams without any success.
What I found was the waters where very very small with few pockets of water that could even hold trout. I did find a lot of "mino's" in both creeks in ankle deep water. If there are still Brook trout or any other trout in these streams good luck because this fly fisherman worked at it pretty hard without any luck.

I have had the oportunity to volunteer to stock Brown Trout and Rainbows with the department of fish and wildlife in other streams within Red River Gorge but I would love to see anyone out there to report on any recent success at Dog Fork or Parched Corn Creek.

sworp 05-19-2009 11:49 AM

Dix River Brookie
Several years ago, no more than 5 or 6, I caught a brookie while fishing in the Dix River below Herrington Lake. I couldnt believe what I was holding but it was unmistakably a brookie. It took an elk hair caddis in a tailout in the fast water near the spillway. I got my buddy to snap a photo and it's one of our favorite pictures.
Good luck with your search!

kytroutman 05-19-2009 12:52 PM

sworp, there were a couple of years that the occasional brookie showed up right after the stockings near the Burgin power plant. I personally never caught one but do know people who did. I suspect they were mixed in with the browns and bows that were being stocked by the KDFW.

eku_brookie_biologist 05-19-2009 08:06 PM

Wow Thanks guys!!! I have shocked up three trout in Parch Corn Creek, all nice size and all returned unharmed, but i have sampled this stream approx 6 times. So not real good numbers. But i am interested in the Poor Fork and Shillalah Creek areas. I think these streams have a really good chance of having viable populations.

If anyone is interested in helping me in my project, just shoot me a line.

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