A Fly Angler’s Guide to the Green River Lake Tailwater, Kentucky

Green River Lake Tailwater, located in central Kentucky, is a well-regarded destination among fly fishing enthusiasts. As an outstanding trout fishery, it hosts a healthy population of rainbow and brown trout that thrive in the cold water released from the Green River Lake Dam. Whether you’re a seasoned fly angler or a beginner, this tailwater is sure to provide an unforgettable fishing experience.

Green River Fly Fishing Overview

Location and Conditions

The Green River Lake Tailwater is easily accessible and is only about a 10-minute drive from the town of Campbellsville. It’s known for its clear waters, beautiful surroundings, and plentiful fish. The water conditions here are usually excellent for fly fishing, particularly during the release schedule from the dam, which provides a steady flow of cold, oxygenated water ideal for trout.

The Green River Lake Tailwaters are only an hour and a half drive from Louisville or Lexington, KY.

Access and Directions

Public access to the Green River Lake Tailwater is available directly downstream of the dam. The parking lot is located on the eastern side of the river. To get there, head south from Campbellsville on KY-55, turn left onto KY-1061, and continue until you reach the Green River Lake Dam. A well-maintained trail leads from the parking area down to the water’s edge.

Techniques, Flies, and Seasons

Fly anglers at Green River Lake Tailwater typically have success with a variety of techniques. Nymphing with an indicator can be especially productive, but don’t overlook the opportunity for throwing dry flies when a hatch is on, or stripping streamers in deeper runs.

Effective flies include the Pheasant Tail Nymph, Elk Hair Caddis, Wooly Bugger, and Zebra Midge. Local fly shops can provide advice on the most effective patterns and sizes for current conditions.

The tailwater is open for fishing year-round, with each season offering its own unique advantages. Spring and fall are often cited as the best times for trout, while summer can offer exciting opportunities for warmwater species in the lower sections.

Accommodations and Amenities

For those planning a multi-day trip, the nearby town of Campbellsville offers a variety of accommodations. Options range from chain hotels like Holiday Inn Express to locally-owned bed and breakfasts such as the Garden House B&B.

Anglers needing to stock up on gear or seek local advice will find the Campbellsville Bait & Grocery conveniently located on the way to the tailwater. For a sit-down meal, try Brothers, a local favorite known for its BBQ and homestyle southern dishes.


The Green River Lake Tailwater, with its easy access, diverse fishery, and beautiful surroundings, is a must-visit location for any fly angler in Kentucky. Its proximity to Campbellsville and various amenities make it a convenient spot for both locals and visitors alike. Whether you’re seeking hefty brown trout or enjoying the fight of a feisty rainbow, the Green River Lake Tailwater is sure to provide an exceptional fly fishing experience.

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