Lake Taneycomo

Crankin’ for trout on Lake Taneycomo

Posted by Bill Babler on February 24th, 2012
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Best if you can get out early, just as the suns eastern rays touch Table Rock Lake Dam.

What a special gift to be on the upper Lake with 2 to 4 generators and know you are the first boat on the first drift of the day.

Expectations are high and they should be this time of the year. No shad coming thru, but the trout remember and they also hope maybe that small 3″ rebel crank is one.

On heavy generation, the trout are bottom huggers. They set and they wait. You have to present your offering where it will require the slighest of movement from them. Current seams and breaks, the heads and tails of the reefs and the bends and the corners of the main upper lake.

Rewards can be fantastic with some of the biggest bows and browns of the year.

For this technique, we use a bit heaver gear. A solid strong reel, spooled with 8 pound mono and a 7 ft. rod in light or med-light is very hard to beat. I personally just love the Orvis Freaquent Flyer. Phil and I have guided with and used them all over Alaska and the preformance is second to none. Most everything is paired with a Shimano Stradic or Sustain. I know my drag and breaking system is top notch.

Generations patterns dictate the amount of weight on the line and I fish it very similar to a Carolina Rig or a Chuck-N-Duck rig. I will use a weight, either a bell sinker or a barrel sinker usually about 3′ above the crankbait. I most always use a floating crankbait to keep it up. Weights range from 3/8th. to 1/16th. again depending on the flow. Lightest weight possible to keep in contact with the bottom.

Yes there are some snags and you will loose a bait from time to time, but by using the 8 pound mono you will most generally straighten out a hook. You can simply bend it back.

I am using and have good success with the small XPS cranks, but my favorite is the Rebel. Buy a varity of colors and patterns, and do not hesitate to switch throughout your time on the water.

When drift fishing the Crankbaits watch Phil’s video on how to drift fish, eggs. Same pattern however the hits on the moving cranks will be much easier to detect, most often slams.

Make sure to have pliers in the boat and be very careful during release as slippery trout and treble hooks can be a problem. Speaking of that, I have never in the years I have been drifting them in generation had a trout swallow one. Most generally they are hooked on the tail triple and are easily released.

Want to break the everyday pattern? Want to try something not everyone is doing? Want to perhaps catch your biggest fish this year?

Try Drift Crankin for a special day on Lake Taneycomo

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