Lake Taneycomo

Lilleys’ Lake Taneycomo fishing report, November 17

Posted by Phil Lilley on November 17th, 2012
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Cold, crisp mornings usually means a little generation here on Taneycomo and that’s been the case.  They’ve been running about one unit for a couple of hours starting at daylight, then off the rest of the day.  BUT last weekend they ran water 24 hours a day both Saturday and Sunday, about one unit, and today they’ve started the same, scheduling generation all day and into the night.  Flow varies from a half unit to one-and-a-half units.  This might be a sign to what they will do this weekend.  SPA will post their schedule later today online.

We’ve had some pretty windless days the last couple of days making catching tough.  But now we have flow, current is almost as good as wind.  When I say tough, it’s not impossible, just slower.  Bait fishing is ok as long as you’re fishing fairly deep water, say over 6 feet deep.  A fly or jig under an indicator can be slow when the water’s surface is slick.

Yesterday was one of those days.  No generation, hardly a breath of wind and high sun, usually that’s the kiss of death when fishing.  But Rolan and I managed quite a few rainbows, fishing from 9 am to 1 pm.  We started below Lookout Island and worked middle to shallow side of the lake all the way to Fall Creek and we fished with scuds only.

We both used 6x fluorocarbon tippet and fished a fly Rolan has made famous, at least in my world.  No not peppy, but a #14 mink.  He usually uses a 3769 TMC hook, 7 wraps of .015 lead wire and a dubbing he makes, mixing mink fur with brown antron.  He uses either mink or peppy 99% of the time when he’s using scuds and one of the other catches trout.  He uses the dubbing sparingly, leaving the ends of the fibers sticking out, no trimming.

This is a mink scud but tied on a 200R TMC hook.

I was using a palsa and Rolan a float, we set our depth about 3-4 feet deep and worked water sometimes as shallow as a foot and as deep as 3 feet.  Rolan likes to work his scud more than I.  He almost swims it, moving it quite a lot over the bottom.  I leave mine for a count of 8, then twitch it every 5 seconds or so.  Either way, we both caught the same number of trout.

One thing, again, for sure.  We did have a few times when the wind would kick up and we’d get a chop on the surface.  Rolan was quick to point out that the catching really turned on when the chop started.

We caught several nice rainbows (pics) but most were small, less than 13 inches.  One of the largest rainbows came out of less than a foot of water, up on the flat at the Narrows.  Most people only fishing the channel there.  I like to throw up in the shallow water a lot.

Presenting the scud swimming isn’t a new technique.  I want the fly to look like it’s sitting on the bottom, then moving across the bottom like it’s swimming, then lying back down.  That’s why we use longer tippet from the indicator down, setting it deeper than the water we’re fishing.  If the indicator is set at about the same depth as the water, the fly would just hop straight up when worked and back down.  That’s not what scuds do.  Want the fly to look and act like a real bug.

The strikes are either subtle (the indicator just vibrates) or they pick the scud up and move with it (indicator starts to move sideways).  Either way, set the hook quickly.

Today the water is running, like I said.  I went out fishing about noon  and ran up to Lookout where Rolan and I started yesterday.  I tied on a tan scud, 200R hook #10, below the #14 mink scud I had on from yesterday.  Set the depth at 3.5 feet and started drifting down the west bank, throwing out towards the middle.

Lite tan scud tied on a 200R TMC Hook.

Didn’t boat a trout till just past the tennis court but right there they were loaded and hungry.  There’s a shallow place that jets out.  I held the boat there and caught several before trolling out a ways and getting by the shallow spot.

It took 70 minutes to drift just past the Narrow Flats and I boated 12 rainbows.  Headed back up to make the drift again, this time using a midge.

I tied on a primrose & pearl #16 zebra midge under a palsa 12 inches and started drifting and fishing.  The wind picked up at times so I did better up top.  But the place where I’d done so well with the scuds, I didn’t hook a fish.  I missed more using the zebra too, probably smaller hook.  When I got to the end of the flat, I’d boated 13 rainbows.

One thing, the average scud rainbows were noticeably bigger than the zebra trout.

Below Fall Creek, catching has been good too, drifting or still fishing, depending on generation.  The water has been running very slow when it is running so use just a small amount of weight if drifting something on the bottom, like bait.  You need to keep it on the bottom but not so much you’re getting snagged up or can’t feel the bite because your weight is too big.

I’ve heard yellow and chartreuse has been the colors to use when drifting power eggs or paste.  I’ve also talked to people fishing off the dock who have done well with night crawlers and white Gulp eggs.

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