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  1. 17 points
    Took my boys for some smallmouth fishing on the James (lower). It was a beautiful late morning, early afternoon. Fish were all over, next to structure, in the middle, shallow, deep, wherever. Tried multiple lures with varying success, but the lure of the day was the Ned rig. I tried 3 different jigheads and all worked equally well, it was just a fishy day. Both boys caught plenty of fish, but the young one caught the fish of the day (and best small mouth of his short life). I was in my 30s before I caught a smallmouth like that. His smile says it all. Hope all of you are taking advantage of the bite, it is GOOD.
  2. 12 points
    Bill Babler

    New brown trout record

    Thanks Guys. Couple of things. You cannot even imagine the care that we gave that fish. The fight was quick and it was in the livewell pumping everything the AlWeld had and then right into the tank at Lilleys just pouring air on it. As far as a Triploid Shane would not say until further testing. It had two clipped fins and was not Frank. Measurements were 28 inch girth. and 41 and 1/4 inch length. 40.4 pounds on certified scales. In speaking to taxidermist Don Frank he said the color of the fish did not appear to be Triploid but he could not be sure either. There are no blocks for fish that size so Don wants to use it and make some along with the skin mount. Shane is doing research now and has the fish at the hatchery. He will let us know age and all the data as soon as his studies are done. I have fished taney since the late 60's and guided full time on it since 1989. My biggest fish prior came below Powersite Dam fishing for walleye when I caught and released a 16 pound Brown. My biggest Rainbow to date on Taney is 8 lbs. My biggest client fish are a 13 lb. Brown and a 8.7 pound Rainbow, but we have caught huge fish all year. I'll put in a little article after a bit with the story run down. As they always say, "right place right time, and it is better to be lucky than good."
  3. 12 points
    I post these on my phone so excuse the typos. I’m down here with family again and last night I stayed up late playing cards. Put in at Cooper at 9 and ran to the cable. Threw jigs and fly fished until 2. It was on from ding to dong. It stayed overcast till noon and they were biting. Saw Babler, Chuck and a multitude of other guides and all were catching. I don’t mess with em much just lay on the board and snap a picture. The last dark one is 16” all the rest just under that Tubing on Tanlerock tomorrow with the kids but I’ll be back out Monday. This post has been promoted to an article
  4. 11 points
    Phil Lilley

    New brown trout record

    New state record brown. Official weight 40.4 pounds. Caught by Bill Babler, a long time guide. Caught near Fall Creek on a pink power worm.
  5. 10 points
    lmt out

    Really good with the really bad

    Some times you have a really good trip and think I have it figure out then..... You have a day like today. We had (the wife and I)5 keepers and 4 shorts. Sister and her boyfriend in her boat 1 short. All keepers were better than 17 inches biggest 22. Had to find fish on fish finder or you weren't getting bit. On the good side got to fish with my beautiful wife which has not happened near enough this year.
  6. 9 points

    September 13 & 14

    Tried to post this last night, but didn't have a good enough internet connection to do it. So, anyway...Fished for walleye with the wife 9-13. Caught five keepers between us. Four on main lake points, and one on the dam. Lost two keepers at the boat. Fish were caught in 15-18' of water. On 9-14, my wife went antiquing and I fished solo. Picked up a keeper in 15' first five minutes and nothing but catfish and drum for the next two hours. Moved shallower to 10-12' and started picking up shorts immediately. Landed another two keepers by noon and then headed in with three in the livewell. Bottom bounced slow death rigs with Smiley blades at 1 mph both days. The bite is light. Several times I noticed one rod looked slightly more loaded then the other and would set the hook on a walleye. They are swimming along at the same speed as the boat with the crawler in their mouth like the crawler is a piece of chewing gum or something. I literally had a short do that as I reeled my bait in. If I saw anything in the action of the rod tips that looked like it might be something other then contact with the bottom, I'd take the rod out of the holder and let the bait drop back. Often I caught a walleye doing that. You gotta reel the natural slack out that you have with a bottom bouncer and then set the hook with a sweep of the rod. A hard bass style hook set will pull it out of their mouths every time. I had probably three shorts to each keeper. It will be at least three weeks before I get back down, so please post some walleye reports! WM
  7. 9 points
    Ran up the Gravois and fished some of everything from noon-6:45ish (Friday the 13th with the full moon.) Many people would probably call it junk fishing. We fished main lake points shallow and deep, secondary points, shallow docks, deep docks, backs of pockets and steep shaded banks; caught fish on all of them. Justin caught a 5 pounder and I caught a 5.5 pounder on back to back casts. His came on a jig and mine came on a worm. Those fish came off of a dock. We fished some shallow wood and caught keepers on squarebills, chatterbaits, and jigs. There was shad in the backs of pockets but all of the shad that we saw were the small ones like 2-3 inches and there really wasn't a ton of it back there yet. Mostly isolated balls. Nothing like what you see on the main lake on the lower-end. We did see some big shad on the main lake schooled up but almost all the fish we caught out there weren't very big. I think the fish that we caught shallow could've been feeding on bluegill but that's just a guess. Justin tied that jig skirt on an Omega jig head and I think it definitely looks pretty sweet. Anyways, we had 8 keepers on the day and about 17.5 lbs for our best 5. It was a fun day all in all. Caught fish on top water once the shadows got long. I'm heading up the Niangua's tomorrow to try if I can replicate it. we will see! Good luck to everyone fishing the BFL Super today and tomorrow. I hope we didn't sore-mouth your fish and if we did we put them right back lol. Tight lines everyone. This post has been promoted to an article
  8. 9 points
    Bill Babler

    It’s Getting Started

    Had 11 keepers yesterday with the best couple being at 3.10 pounds. One LM and one SM at that weight. Lots of other keeps in that 2.8 pound range. Only had 4 shorts. Everything on a 5/8th. GPO Pig Sticker with a Beaver trailer in GP. KC area 15' to 22' Bite was a solid jig bite unlike my earlier deal. Buddy simply tore them up at Shell Knob past couple of days on a modified Ned Rig with a skirt and a slim senko trailer. I'll try and get a pic. Ned was 1/4 oz. custom built mushroom head. Fish in 15' to 22'
  9. 8 points
    Bill Babler

    Big Fish

    First, remember we are fishing a strike indicator. We do not fish carbon on a small spool reel due to memory and of course carbon line will sink immediately and is heavy. It is also almost impossible to mend or to keep from dragging the float/indicator. We want the indicator to ride as high as we can especially in current for visibility. We also want it to ride as drag free as possible and that will never work with carbon as a main line, just physically impossible due to the make up of carbon. Mono or braid is the primary line that spincast and I'm saying this with a grain of salt, spincast fly fishermen use. As in all reality we are fly fishing to an extent with a spinning rod, we are deep nymphing. Some of these deep spin/fly cast nymph fishermen are using rods to 12', so some are longer than a traditional fly rod. Not only to cast and retrieve the deep nymph, but to help monitor the drift and maintain it in natural order. Another function of the 7 plus foot rods is they allow you to use much lighter terminal tackle such as 5-6-7X small diameter tippet material. They are tremendous shock absorbers as when fished at a high attitude they take the pressure off the light tippet and transfer it to the rod. With the quality of the reels and the drag systems we have today you can fish very light line with excellent results if your technique is good and you take your time. From the strike indicator down, we DO want the weight of the line to help sink the fly or nymph as they are usually small and very light. Usually no bigger than a 12 or 14 and sometimes a 16 or 18. So most if not all of us use a light carbon tippet in the 5X to 6X range, usually with small diameter almost always at .005 or there abouts. It sinks and maintains a very low drag. Even a mono of 2 pounds will be way thicker on the diameter and will not sink at the rate of the tippet. a very low diameter mono is .046 at the very best and it is not a sinking line like the carbon. You would have to add a lot of additional weight to the line to get it to the depth we want. Right now in flow most are deep nymphing with a fly or spinning rod at around 10' below the indicator, depending where you are fishing and the depth and speed of the water. 7' to 8' is good right now where I am fishing. I want a gentle tick along the bottom presenting the nymph directly into the face of the fish, I do not want the fish to either rise or move side to side, i want it right in their face. Phil or Duane can jump in here, but when I'm guiding, I'm for the most part not fishing for fish. I know that sounds strange, but I'm fishing for bites From the day before thru the entire trip I'm setting equipment and technique to simply get another bite. Any legal step and legal action I can use to get my client one more bite is what I'm looking for. Not every bite is a fish, but most every bite or non-bite tells you something if you will listen and then practice that and then modify your practice to make it as perfect as you can. I have been doing this full time for almost 30 years taking folks that fish once a year and trying to get them the maximum amount of bites I can in a 4 or 6 hr. trip. I learn something from everyone of them and I learn something everyday. What I'm doing now has taken me 40 years to learn and I'm far from done learning and hope that continues. Currently every guide on Taney that knows their business are fishing a similar method when nymphing with either a fly or spinning rod, it is a technique that has been developing really since I was going to school here in the middle 70's and continues to be modified and perfected. Good Luck and i hope this explains it.
  10. 8 points
    Phil Lilley

    Firemen's Benefit today

  11. 7 points

    What's Cooking?

    House guests tonight. Two long time favorites I claim as grandchildren. They brought Leo, who I now claim as great-grandchild. And they loved dinner.
  12. 7 points

    Finally Got My Line Tugged Hard

    I was on the water at 6:15. Water temp 82 to 84. Breeze very light. Nothing looked at my topwater so around 7:15 I went looking. I found small schools of bait fish suspended at 15 to 20 feet over 29 to 40 feet of water. I saw no bait fish on or near the bottom. Eventually I found a point into a treed pocket cove with larger marks and some evidence of bait chasing. The fish were on the edge of the tree line. I put a smoke pepper keitech on one of Bo's jig heads and experimented with different times of drop before reeling. The jig was knocked around more than once with no hook ups until I finally got a good hook up. I had forgotten what stripers and hybrids felt like. That fish was the only one of good size. The boga grip scale said a hair over 4 pounds. I caught three more little ones and a crappie of no real size. I came in about 10:30. BTW, Crosstimbers marina has no fish cleaning station. I need to figure out how to deal with that.
  13. 7 points
    Trout fishing on Lake Taneycomo has been pretty good lately. One of our guides, Bill Babler, said his clients caught 77 trout in a 4-hour trip yesterday, both on the Berkley's Pink Power Worm and night crawlers. I'd say that's pretty good "catching". Our generation schedule has been consistent too, with no generation at night through the morning, then moderate flow in the afternoons ending about sundown. But that changed today when problems at Bull Shoals Dam caused a shift in providing power from the group of hydro dams in our grid. Here's the jest of what happened, from an email forwarded to me this Friday morning from Southwest Power Administration via Missouri Department of Conservation, Fisheries Division. "Bull Shoals regulation stopped working yesterday, and the plant was placed in manual mode." Regulation means, "running water round the clock to adjust for the small fluctuations in power demand". One dam in the system must be running water, generating power, all the time so there's no interruption of power when there's fluctuations in the grid. Regulating shifted to Table Rock Dam so now Table Rock has to keep running at least 35 megawatts (may be less, I don't know for sure) of power 24 hours a day till something changes. This minimum flow isn't much water. It's less than one full unit. The current at our dock is barely noticeable and it doesn't affect dock fishing at all. I does, though, affect wading below the dam and there is pretty good current down through Short Creek to Trout Hollow. Bottom line, we like this minimum flow because it helps trout eat more, and more often. When food is moving down with the current, fish can't help themselves - they eat. We're still on 2-pound line watch! We're telling as many people as we can - it makes a big difference! Blake, who is one of our dock hands, told me yesterday that he's converted many guests fishing off the dock to 2-pound line. After not getting a bite, he will offer to tie a short piece of light line on to their line, retie the hook and let them try again with 2-pound tippet. Wallah! They start catching trout. All it takes is about 24 inches. Why 2-pound line? Our lake water is very clear and trout see the line. I know I sound like a broken record, reading my fishing reports but I'm not going to lie, or try to sell you a different lure or bait just to sound different. The Berkley Pink Worm is still catching most of the fish for guides and second best thing is night crawlers. The go-to jig color last weekend at the Branson Firemen's Benefit was black and brown. Just ask Gerry Dwiggins, long time trout tournament fisherman, who landed and winning trout - a 23.65 pound brown trout. He hooked it below the Branson Landing and took 45 minutes to land. He was using a 3/32nd ounce jig and 2-pound line. Our brown trout do make a run to the dam area in the fall to spawn, although they are not actually successful creating any young trout. They go through the actions and lay eggs but because of water flow and temperature, none hatch. Some browns are showing up early and are being caught on small scud and midge patterns. They are seeing some nice rainbows up there too but wade fishing will be limited to close to the shore because of the minimum flows for now. Boating to the dam, though, should be easy. There's plenty of water to get to at least the Big Hole and fish the area from a boat. I'd throw a variety of jigs colors starting with black/brown, sculpin and even white. Again I'd use 2-pound line and either 1/32nd or 1/16th ounce jigs. View full article
  14. 6 points
    Mitch f

    What's Cooking?

    Martini 🍸 with Cilantro clippings! Broiled red snapper with a fried small crab on top. oh yes, started with Lobster Bisque
  15. 6 points
    Phil Lilley

    Big Fish

    Last I looked, our FB posts have reached well over 100k people with tons more sharing. This news should go around the world since it's close to the New Zealand record. So for a tiny percentage of people to make stupid remarks as well as all kinds of crazy, baseless assumptions about what happened to the fish, I'd say we've done a good job of getting the facts out there. I understand how Bill feels about catching it. I'd struggle with the same thing if it ever happened to me... but I think I know what I'd do.
  16. 6 points

    Labor Day weekend report

    Good report Jester - I fished just below the Trophy area to Lilley's yesterday morning....water temp was in the mid 50's when I started. The bite was steady and there were flurries in areas that I drifted by. I used the pink worm under a float....float depth depending the water depth. Then would switch up to a ginger and brown jig and that was crazy good. It really and I mean really started to get busy in that area so after a short break I decided to work my way from Lilley's towards the Landing. From here down the jig in the color mentioned was the cat's meow!! I was fishing the bank on the North side as much as possible.... The crazy thing was the numbers....not so much the size...even though there were some chunky ones....and fight!!. And to top it off many times I was the only boat in the area until I got to around Monkey Island to the Landing. Moral of the story - there is fish in every area.... Stay safe out there today C4F
  17. 5 points
    Headed down to try my cricket and hopper luck ....
  18. 5 points

    What's Cooking?

    Company's coming: An old classic appetizer - brick of philly, jar of Heinz chili sauce and a can of lump crab, Ritz crackers Main: leg quarters rubbed with Head Country dry seasoning. Done on the egg of course. black bean and corn salad with onion and cilantro. Agave for sweetener and red wine vinegar to set it off. green salad. not from a bag. Dessert: An honest to pete homemade apple pie - Granny Smith apples of course. And a lattice crust, the way God and Grandma Dot intended it.
  19. 5 points
    Mitch f

    Big Fish

    Heck, you deserve a state record just for taking apart your reels every trip and changing the line.
  20. 5 points

    You can’t say we didn’t try.

    Thanks Mitch but if I only posted a report when I "do well" you guys would never hear from me again. But actually I did do well yesterday. Hung out with a buddy. Went to the river. Caught a fish. Took some pictures. My version of well has thankfully changed over the years. But I also remember when yesterday wouldn't have been okay. And I would drive home pissed. Usually that was after a tournament. And I would just feel horrible until I was able to get back out and prove I could do it. So I get that too, just glad I don't have those feelings anymore.
  21. 5 points
    straw hat

    Crappie trips of 8/19 and 21

    Crappie bite seems to be heating up for us. We caught 12 keepers on the 19th and 19 keepers on the 21st. Water temp 80 to 82, 3' visibility and all fish were 1 to 5 ft deep and in heavy cover.
  22. 4 points

    Other Ozark Stream

    I did it again, 2 2#+ largemouth, 1 16" smallie and several from 8 to 14. 25 to 30 fish total in about 5 hours of fishing. Really, this walk the dog thing is fun. I was always skeptical, but I walk on spinning gear and now have baits from a Sammy 65 up to Zara Spooks and Dog-X Diamante. It's becoming my favorite way to catch fish in the warmer weather.
  23. 4 points

    What's Cooking?

    Didn’t cook this evening.
  24. 4 points

    Big Fish

    There are those that search out things to be outraged about. If you let those people get to you, or even bother you, then you might be dumber than they are. You didn't go search out this fish and kill it. Screw those people and be proud of this moment.
  25. 4 points

    Things are getting better

    Put in at RB, went up to sons creek targeting crappie. Tried minnows and Bobby garlands with a few bites and small crappie. As just a thought put on power bait minnows in black shad color and the bite picked way up. Ended up catching about 25 and 14 keepers. Missed also about same amount . Caught them in 13 To 22 foot of water but you had to fish right next to the standing dead trees or stobbs as close as you could. More than about 6 inches from it and no bites. Bite was very soft , but the power minnows was the ticket today. Water temp was about 78, water clear. Guess the black minnows matched all the shad in the area. Did not slay them but had a great day on the lake. Looking forward to better days ahead. Hope others had a good day!
  26. 4 points

    High water blues

    We ran the same drill Saturday. No thievery of gear this time. Talked to a guy who lives in Lupus - said couple weeks ago they got after some guys who came from upriver and were caught running other people's lines - chased em past Rocheport and haven't seen em since. Anyway, water is still high, mountains of flotsam still in the eddy swirls and on bank. Five flathead and one blue for our efforts. Two 15s and the rest 5s. yumyum fish fry.
  27. 4 points
    Mitch f

    TRL Facebook page "censored"

    Unfortunately I can’t agree with this statement anymore. The “Masters of the Universe” have seen to that. Google algorithms...blocking Campus speakers, etc. so in other words someone else’s right to listen never comes into play. As they once said, the biggest news could be what you never hear. To take it a step further, looks like you can’t use specific gender pronouns in some Elementary schools now. They are only to be referred to as “students”.
  28. 3 points
    I had a big Johnson years ago. Blew the head right off of it. That's when I switched to Merc.
  29. 3 points

    8/27 8/28

    Took a drive today to check the lake out and look for a spot to fish tomorrow. As I'm pulling out of the garage a voice in my head said "the lake is a lot lower now than the last time you fished, better grab a pole and walk the shore ". So I jumped out, grabbed a rod with a spinnerbait on it, thew it in the truck and headed out. Went to 3 places trying to find the best option. Funny thing is everywhere I went I caught bass from the bank. 2 or 3 at each spot, no keepers, but enough action to get me interested. Hadn't been anywhere near the lake in weeks but from what I saw today there are fish shallow near drop offs. . Thing is will they be there tomorrow,and will they bite??? Not sure which place to put in at because they all looked awesome! When I got home I re spooled a few reels that had old line on them since Spring. Made sure everything is good to go for in the morning. Will report back tomorrow afternoon. Plan is to fish from daybreak till around noon.
  30. 3 points

    Dove Opener

    Sound delightful and inviting 😄
  31. 3 points

    hodge podge bite

    Thanks Bo - I appreciate you taking the time to respond and really enjoyed the video. As I alluded to earlier, your extensive sharing of information and advice is super helpful and most generous. I've been using your jigs, jig heads and crappie heads pretty exclusively for several years now and am completely sold on the entire line of products. Can't wait to put the Wobbler to use and I'll be sure to report back. Thanks again.
  32. 3 points
    Chief Grey Bear

    What's Cooking?

    Those were for some of the kids that were there too. Thanks everybody. It's was a pleasure to give back just little to these people that volunteer their time and effort to keep our flowing streams a littler cleaner.
  33. 3 points

    Boat type recommendation

    Thank you, gentlemen. I appreciate you taking the time to help. I would welcome recommend guide(s), places to stay for short visits and a place to store my boat while I look around for a place to buy. I drive from St. Louis and the time is the same as to the place I am selling in Shell Knob. I’m hoping to find a place to buy with a budget of $125k. I’m a retired contractor and don’t mind, in fact usually prefer a fixer-upper. I’m really looking forward to making this move.
  34. 3 points

    Rigging Finesse plastics

    I have been fishing whacky rigged lately. Takes another tool and an O ring. More tackle to carry, but has been working well. Been experimenting with different color nails, bought some gold ones to try next time out.
  35. 3 points

    Rigging Finesse plastics

    I do the same thing. Except as a wade fisherman it's my pockets that get filled. Much to my wife's concern as she does the laundry😌.
  36. 3 points

    Free dog

    Wait....Is this one of those brain teasers? Half the goats jumped the fence....but none got out.....hmmm. 🤔
  37. 2 points

    Shell Knob to Baxter

    Lots of wind today fished from about 9 to 3. Caught 8 with 4 keepers, all came on spinner and plopper. Caught some out of cedars today, 2 good ones. WT 82
  38. 2 points
    I've fished a small tributary of the Meramec that gets pretty low in the summer. There's parts where it's only a foot across between the pools and the pools are only a couple feet deep. Still holds some small mouth in those conditions and they are pretty eager to eat usually too.
  39. 2 points
    I thought we were friends😂
  40. 2 points

    Game Wardens

    Actually, “over time” was just used as a figure of speech. Comparatively, this is the most I’ve seen or heard of them in a long time. So that’s why I used the term. Sorry for the mistaken terminology.
  41. 2 points

    It’s Getting Started

    Thank You Bill!, It's a bit refreshing to see the good sticks struggling as well! It was so tough for me that I pulled my boat to do some serious cleaning. I realize that better days are right around the corner. Vernon must be coming down, as I see we are finally going to get some rain!
  42. 2 points
    With you on the just catch something thought process! I love the tug of any fish. These are a couple of Ozark beauties for sure!
  43. 2 points
    Nice job Steve and Gary. I have been having the best success since she came down to more normal level recently finding schooling fish well off secondary points heading into major creeks. Big and Little arm. About 90% of my fish are suspended and I snag them with a shakey head adorned with a 4" Robo worm. I am a NED fanboy normally but right now swimming the shakey through these schools is my confidence go to bait with jerk bait a distant second. Again nice catching!!!!
  44. 2 points

    eagle rock

    We have been dealing with the boulder issue on Bull Shoals and Norfork Lake over the years as well. We have been told the rip-rap/boulders were placed to protect the parking lots on these two reservoirs. Heck even our internal engineers want to place boulders around the parking lots. I have made my dissatisfaction with the boulders known on several occasions and will continue to express my displeasure until the boulders are removed. We also have some accesses with designs that make me scratch my head and ponder what were they thinking........ Also, all USACE fees (launching and camp fees) go into the general fund... so i don't believe raising fees will fix the issue.
  45. 2 points
    Old dog 417

    September 3,4,,5

    Good reports and Way to go, both you guys! Good to see the high water gone and fishing improving. od
  46. 2 points
    My grandpa worked at the vette plant for 30. I put in 15 years on the line at GM so......
  47. 2 points
    Al Agnew

    Google Maps Stream Hunting?

    I agree with all of that, just wanted to correct your statement that the guy was a trespasser in fact. I make it a practice to not stop on bars that show signs of use by the landowner like a picnic table or bbq grill, or are right in front of a cabin or have a road coming onto them. And if ever asked to leave a bar I will; there are plenty of other bars.
  48. 2 points

    Firemen's Benefit today

    Was taking to Seth earlier, thanks for posting the pics for us Phil. Hope it can be released safely. Congrats to the angler too. Heck of a catch for sure.
  49. 2 points
    snagged in outlet 3

    Taneycomo 8/10-8/17

    He can rest easy till Friday!!!!
  50. 2 points
    Be careful with those trolling motor wires, they can catch fire ! I check mine frequently if I am using it hard.
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