Cedar Creek Lake in Lincoln County will become a new Kentucky trout fishery as part of a three-year program to make more trout fishing opportunities available in the state.
Cedar Creek is a relatively new lake. The attractive 784-acre facility was dedicated a decade ago, and original fish management was aimed at the impoundment being developed as a trophy largemouth bass lake.
According to the Kentucky Department of Fish & Wildlife Resources (KDFWR), the lake remains an “excellent” largemouth lake. “Relatively high density of large fish (17-22 inch) gives anglers a good chance for a trophy fish. A trophy regulation of a 20-inch minimum size limit, one fish creel limit is in effect”.
The lake also offers good fishing for bluegill and channel catfish.
This week, the KDFWR was scheduled this week to stock 12,000 rainbow trout at three sites: the ramp at the dam; the ramp on old U.S. 150, located in mid-lake; and at the fishing access area in the upper lake, located adjacent to the KY 1770 bridge. Each site will receive 4,000 trout.
Cedar Creek is located between Stanford and Crab Orchard along U.S. 150. It is little more than an hour drive southeast from Bardstown.
"The trout look great," said Gerry Buynak, assistant director of fisheries for Kentucky Fish and Wildlife. "They are about 10 inches. Because of the popularity of Cedar Creek Lake, we expect to see good returns for anglers."
According to a KDFWR news release, another stocking of 9,000 trout will follow in February.
"We should have these fish all the way into June of 2013, when the water grows too warm for trout," said Jeff Ross, assistant director of fisheries for Kentucky Fish and Wildlife.
Cedar Creek has three boat ramps, plus has bank fishing access off Kentucky Route 1770, near the south end of the lake.
Fisheries personnel plan to conduct a creel survey on Cedar Creek Lake and a concurrent angler attitude survey. They also plan to tag 600 of the trout to determine angler utilization of the fish.
"We strongly encourage people to return the tag if they catch a tagged trout," said Dave Dreves, fisheries research biologist for Kentucky Fish and Wildlife. "We have four metal boxes around the lake where anglers may get an envelope on one side of the box, fill out the information and a slot on the other side of the box to deposit the envelope."
The boxes will be located at the stocking sites and also at the Cowan Road boat ramp. The envelopes are postage paid. Anglers may take them home to fill them out, then send them back to Kentucky Fish and Wildlife. Anglers must include their name, address, phone number and whether they kept the trout or released it.
"Those who participate will receive a pewter fish pin," Dreves said. "They also are entered into a monthly drawing for cash prizes."
A total of nine drawings will be made each month: one $100 winner, one $50 winner, two $25 winners and five $10 winners. "You stay in until you win," Dreves said.
Buynak also encouraged anglers who catch these fish to harvest them.
"Adult anglers must have a trout permit to harvest trout," Buynak said. "A trout permit is included in the senior/disabled license and the Sportsman's license. Buy a trout permit and take these fish home and eat them. Trout will likely die after catching and releasing them."
These stockings will be conducted over a three-year period. After three years, the program will be reevaluated to determine whether to continue the stockings.