Lake Taneycomo

November 10, 2011 Fishing Report

Posted by Phil Lilley on November 10th, 2011
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Seems like it’s been a long time since our lake has been what I’d consider “normal.” The floods back in April/May really changed our lake and conditions have been varied since.  But today, Empire Electric, who owns and operates the dam on the lower end of Taneycomo (Powersite Dam), finished installing a new series of adjustable gates on top of it’s structure, and our lake level and flows should finally go back to normal.

To work on these gates, Empire Electric officials had to lower Taneycomo by about four feet,  and they did that almost three weeks ago.  The dam is a spillway/power generation dam, and the spillway part is what needed work.  When Table Rock Dam is not generating, our lake levels out at the top of Powersite’s spillway.  A set of plywood boards was installed and used over the 90-plus years of operation across the top of the spillway, holding our lake level up by four feet.  When the boards were removed during high water events, more water was allowed to run over the dam.  But the boards would always have to be reinstalled.  The new gate system permanently replaces the boards, so now we hope to never see our lake drawn down again.

What will generations look like now?  If I were to guess, I would say on cold mornings we’ll see some generation, but as each day warms up, we should also see some down water, then maybe more generation in the evenings.  Table Rock is below power pool, or it was until this last rain, so I’d think the SPA (Southwest Power Administration) would want to conserve lake water for really cold days later this winter.

Lots of midge hatches have been coming off in the mornings and evenings.  Midging trout mean they are close to the surface and will likely take a lure reeled or trolled close to the surface.  I understand that Buster Loving had a very good guide trip yesterday out in front of the resort.  They were using a jig-and-float rig using small 1/125th-ounce dark-colored jigs under a float four- to five-feet deep.

We’re pretty excited to start fishing around the rocks (large rocks) that were placed up at the dam by the Missouri Department of Conservation last week.  Anglers are already saying they’re catching rainbows around the rocks.  The trout seem to be attracted to the boulders and that, in turn, attracts fishermen.  A jig and float would work around these rocks as well as a zebra midge under a float.  If the water is running, cast a jig around them and behind them.  I tied on a 1/16th-ounce jig (a 1/32nd-ounce jig would also work) the other day and set a float four feet above it.  I  floated it over the rocks and caught rainbows.  I also caught rainbows in other places other than around the rocks, too.

Drift fishing from Trout Hollow down past our place and on past Cooper Creek has been fair using night crawlers and Gulp power eggs.  There are a lot of rainbows in the area, but they haven’t been really active lately.  Today’s generation should kick them in gear for this weekend, hopefully.

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