Lake Taneycomo fishing report, October 31
Fishing -- and catching -- on Lake Taneycomo lately has been awfully good, according to our guides and most of anglers we talk to. Generation has been unpredictable, running some days and not running other days with no real pattern. I'd normally advise checking the Southwest Power Administration site but be warned . . . the generation schedule has been wrong at least two days in the last week. Our water temperature is an amazing 47 degrees. I say amazing because it has stayed around 47 for almost three months. Normally our water temperature from Table Rock Lake rises into the mid 50's in the fall, but that just hasn't happened. Dissolved oxygen levels seem to be very good, too, since our trout are fighting just as hard as they normally fight in the winter and spring.
Midge hatches are off the chart at times. I was out a couple of afternoons ago at the dam, wading close to the Missouri Department of Conservation boat ramp when midge flies started coming off the water in swarms. You would have hought I was on a warm water stream in the summer or the White River during a caddis hatch. It was amazing! And the trout responded -- they were all over the surface, slurping as fast as they could all the larva, pupa and adults. They liked my #20 olive loop wing... a lot!
Late this afternoon, I fished just above Fall Creek for a while. With no generation and a slight breeze, the midge started hatching all around me. Trout were already midging on the surface. When the air started filling with the small bugs, they increased their activity and I started catching rainbows at will.
I was using a #16 rusty zebra midge under a palsa three feet deep, fishing the deep channel above Fall Creek. I didn't catch anything longer than 13 inches but saw several very big rainbow rise while fishing. Usually, these hatches don't happen until dusk but these started early. I was back in well before dark.
I kept four rainbows for the grill this evening. As I gutted them, I took their stomach contents and put them in a clear plastic baggy. Adding water, I saw hundreds of midge pupa from these trout in the bag and took some pictures and even a video of them.
I couldn't believe how close a rusty zebra came to imitating these pupas. They even had a rusty tint to them.
I did use a #20 cream blood worm up on the shallow flats, and the trout also liked that fly a lot! The problem was that I had a hard time hooking and landing any trout that bit the tiny fly. They were taking it so aggressively that the hook was just popping out. And these rainbows on the flat are nice, mature rainbows that know how to pull and fight -- not an easy battle on 6x tippet.
Our guides are also saying that Turner's micro jigs, half micro in tan or olive, have been red hot both above Fall Creek and below, especially if there's a chop on the water. They also recommended Trout Magnets in [ink and cotton candy at and below Cooper Creek if there's a choppy surface.
Again, night crawlers are the best live bait to use below Fall Creek and the best areas are just below the creek mouth to down past Trout Hollow. Berkeley's Gulp Power Bait in pink or orange from here around Lilleys' Landing to Cooper Creek has been decent.