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Fishing Nolin River Lake

AKA: Nolin Lake

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Nolin River Lake, KY

Popular Fish Species Nolin River Lake, KY

Nolin River Lake Popular Fish - Crappie

Crappie Fishing

Black crappie and white crappie both reside in Nolin River Lake. Typically the bigger slab crappie tend to be black crappie, and the white crappie tend to have more numbers of average size fish. Both species often school together so when you find them you may catch both species. Crappie fishing is on the rise and they can be found in sizeable schools. Crappie always like cover and structure, so locate brush and vegetation. Using a fish finder can help locate schools of crappie, which tend to stack vertically around cover. Live bait and small jigs are the most common method for crappie here. In spring and fall focus on the 8 to 12 foot range. As the crappie move deep in summer and winter, follow points out deep, as well as find ledges near channels in deeper water.

Nolin River Lake Popular Fish - White Bass

White Bass Fishing

After several very successful spawn years, white bass are flourishing in Nolin River Lake. It is arguably the lake with the best white bass population in the state, and anglers should expect some great fishing this year. White bass are aggressive, hard-fighting and just plain fun to catch. When fishing for white bass, the average fish is typically in the one- to two-pound range. These schooling fish tend to roam around the lake looking for ideal water conditions and baitfish. Look for them to generally be in 15 to 35 feet of water, whether they are hovering around the bottom or swimming in open water. Fish finders are the best way to locate big schools of white bass. In spring, once the water temperature rises into the mid sixties, they move shallow into the backs of coves and creek channels to spawn. At this time anglers can fish from shore and often do quite well. Use lures that imitate baitfish, including crankbaits, jerkbaits, jigs and spoons.

Nolin River Lake Popular Fish - Largemouth Bass

Largemouth Bass Fishing

Fishing for largemouth bass in Nolin River Lake is still popular, even though the numbers of bass caught has declined in recent years. The continued attraction is the big bass that still roam Nolin River Lake. Thanks to efforts and good fisheries management by the Kentucky Department of Fish & Wildlife, there are still quality bass to be caught. The lake has extensive cover for both baitfish and bass. When the bite is good, bass typically move shallow and are quite aggressive. If you find them shallow and they are not tempted to bite, slow down and use smaller, lighter baits. Fishing for largemouth bass is good virtually any time they are shallow - in spring, mornings in summer, and during warm Fall afternoons. Use shallow crankbaits around rip rap. Around grass use worms, jigs, topwater and spinnerbaits. In deeper water, big worms, jigs and spoons are three good weapons. In winter, spend your time fishing Nolin River Lake on deeper structure where the bass spend much of their time. Smallmouth bass and spotted bass also reside here in good numbers.

Fish species to fish for...

Guide to fishing for largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, black crappie, white crappie, walleye, bluegill and white bass at Nolin River Lake in Kentucky.

Nolin River Lake Fishing Video

Great fishing draws anglers to Nolin River Lake, which is a 5,800-acre lake in the west-central part of the state. Nolin Lake State Park is a great place to headquarter for a boating or fishing excursion.

Nolin River Lake, located in central Kentucky, is a beloved destination for fishing enthusiasts, boaters, and campers. This scenic reservoir offers a tranquil retreat amidst the rolling hills and lush landscapes, providing ample opportunities for outdoor recreation.

Fishing at Nolin River Lake is a popular activity, attracting anglers in search of various fish species. The lake is known for its populations of largemouth bass, crappie, catfish, and bluegill. Anglers can cast their lines from the shoreline, fish from boats, or explore the lake's hidden coves and submerged structures. Nolin River Lake's diverse fishery ensures that anglers of all skill levels can enjoy a rewarding day of fishing.

Whether you're casting a line, cruising the lake in a boat, or setting up camp along the shoreline, Nolin River Lake offers a serene and scenic escape in the heart of Kentucky. Its diverse fish populations, calm waters, and picturesque landscapes make it an ideal destination for fishing, boating, and camping adventures. So pack your fishing gear, launch your boat, or pitch your tent by the lakeshore, and immerse yourself in the beauty and tranquility of Nolin River Lake.

There are campsites, RV hookups, a boat launch ramp and plenty of activities for the whole family. There are several other campgrounds and lodging scattered around the lake as well. Explore over 170 miles of shoreline in search of two kinds of bass, two kinds of crappie, walleye and sunfish. There are plenty of areas around the lake for bank fishing, portage of canoes and kayaks, or just enjoying the view. Rental boats are available at the marinas.

Fishing Boats For Rent In Kentucky

Primary fish species residing in Nolin River Lake

Click images for fishing tips and details about each species.

Largemouth bass Smallmouth bass Black crappieWhite CrappieWalleye Bluegill White Bass

Nolin River Lake Amenities

Marina: YES
Boat Rental: YES
Boat Launch Ramp: YES
Campgrounds: YES
RV Hookups: YES
Lodging: YES
Convenience Store: YES
Bait & Tackle: YES
Restaurant: YES

Today's Weather & Forecast

Boating on Nolin River Lake is a favored pastime, thanks to its calm waters and picturesque surroundings. Boaters can navigate the lake's serene waters, taking in the beautiful scenery and peaceful ambiance. Whether you're cruising along the shoreline, water skiing, or simply enjoying a leisurely boat ride, Nolin River Lake offers a perfect setting for boating enthusiasts. The lake provides boat ramps for convenient access, ensuring that boaters can make the most of their time on the water.

Fishing Boat Rentals

Wax Marina
Rentals: Pontoon boats and kayaks
270 242-7205

Public Boat Launch Ramps & Landings

Cave Hollow Boat Launch Ramp
Located in the southeast section of the lake, off Wilderness Road, this is a one-lane, concrete ramp with gravel parking.

Iberia Recreation Center Boat Launch Ramp
Located in the northeast section of the lake, off Peoria Road, this is a one-lane, concrete ramp with paved parking.

Moutardier Boat Launch Ramp
Located mid lake, west side, off Moutardier Road, this is a four-lane, concrete ramp with docks and paved parking.

Nolin River Dam Boat Launch Ramp
Located in the southwest corner of the lake, off Nolin Dam Road, at the east end of the dam, this is a two-lane, concrete ramp with a dock and paved parking.

Nolin State Park Campground Boat Launch Ramp
Located in the southeast section of the lake, off Brier Creek Road, this is a one-lane, concrete ramp with a dock and paved parking.

Wax Marina Boat Launch Ramp
Located mid lake, on the north side of the lake, off Peoria Road, this is a four-lane, concrete ramp with a dock and paved parking.


Ponderosa Boat Dock Marina
865 Ponderosa Rd
Clarkson, KY 42726
270 242-7215

Wax Marina
14008 Peonia Rd
Clarkson, KY 42726
270 242-7205

Fishing Guides On Nolin River Lake, KY

If you offer fishing guide services on this lake, please contact us for a free listing, to be posted here.

Fishing License

Click here for a Kentucky Fishing License.

Camping at Nolin River Lake allows visitors to fully immerse themselves in the natural beauty of the area. The lake offers a range of campgrounds and RV parks that cater to different camping preferences, including tent sites and full RV hookups. Campers can relax amidst the peaceful surroundings, enjoy campfire evenings, and take advantage of amenities such as picnic areas, playgrounds, and hiking trails. The campgrounds at Nolin River Lake provide a great setting for families and outdoor enthusiasts to enjoy the tranquility and beauty of the lake.

Campgrounds & RV Parks Nearby

Nolin Lake State Park Campground - 270 286-4240

Moutardier Campground - 270 286-4230

Wax Campground - 270 242-7587

Dog Creek Campground - 270 524-5454

Brier Creek Campground - 270 286-9222

Nolin River Lake KY Map - Fishing & Camping Areas

Contact Information

Nolin River Lake
Nolin Lake State Park
2998 Brier Creek Rd
Mammoth Cave, KY 42259
270 286-4240


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