Kentucky Fishing and Boating Guide now available

​The new license year for fishing and hunting in Kentucky began this month, and the Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources has the latest information to help Lake Cumberland and Cumberland River anglers get a jump on spring fishing opportunities.

The Kentucky Fishing and Boating Guide is a summary of current regulations. The 2023-24 edition is now available on the department’s website ( and wherever fishing licenses are sold.

Jeff Ross, assistant director of Fisheries for Kentucky Fish and Wildlife, suggests anglers keep a hard copy of the guide on hand.

“Keep one in your boat or vehicle for reference in case your phone isn’t available to view them online,” he said.

The guide details a number of new regulations, including those for largemouth and smallmouth bass. Ross explained simplification and standardization were the main reasons for pursuing the changes.

“If we had special regulations in place for black bass that were not effective at achieving the desired population management goals, we sought to change them to statewide regulations to make it simpler for our anglers,” he said.

Fisheries managers use protective slot limits to improve the bass populations in lakes and streams. For those lakes and streams with protective slot limits for black bass, the limit is now standardized at 12 to 15 inches.​