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Phil Lilley

Lilley's Lake Taneycomo Fishing Report, August 6

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I usually start my fishing report by talking about the generation pattern, which really dictates how we chose to fish at any given time. But there's one thing that at least right now is more important if you want success in catching trout on Lake Taneycomo . . . and that's line size.

Our water is presently gin clear which means the trout are line weary. Using the right line size in whatever fishing application you're using is very important. For instance, I was fly fishing yesterday morning, using 6x tippet (Rio Powerflex 3.4-pound .005 inch diameter), fishing with a fly called a zebra midge (#16 under an indicator) in the trophy area. The trout weren't having it at all. I switched to 7x tippet (Rio 2.5-pound .004 inch diameter) and immediately started catching fish with the same presentation. You'll see the same results fishing, say, with a pink Powerworm under a float using two-pound line versus four-pound line. And I venture to say, you'd see the same thing using bait fished on the bottom.

We talk to anglers all the time, fishing from the dock and in boats, who are having difficulty catching fish. Most have read my reports and watch One Cast but still have not tried two-pound line. It makes a difference... just ask Daniel Sauers. He caught trout off our dock every day last week using Pausky's salmon eggs with gold glitter, a #16 treble hook and two-pound line. He arrived at the dock early, which is another key to catching trout.

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This beauty was caught off our dock using a night crawlers and was successfully released.

The water has been off from basically 9 p.m. through the night and morning each day for the past week. This has given anglers a chance to do some wading and fishing below the dam as well as fishing off any dock or bank. There's no current to deal with. Then generation powers up to four full units in the afternoons until dark.

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Guide Bill Babler with a client's 27-inch brown caught on a night crawler and then released.

Night crawlers continue to be the best live bait. When fishing with crawlers with no generation, throw your line out with a little weight and let it sit on the bottom. We use half a worm, hooking it once in the middle and letting it hang off the hook naturally. We're not balling it up on the hook as done to entice catfish. They bite by smell, but trout mainly bite by sight. We are also injecting the worm with air to make it float off the bottom. This is not essential BUT you will get bit quicker and catch more fish if you float the worm.

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I've already mentioned the pink Powerworm. Use a small jig head hook and thread the whole worm up on the hook, letting it hang off the hook straight. Straight is important. Use a little super glue to help stick the worm in place; otherwise it will want to slide off. Use two-pound line from the worm to the float. We use a weighted float to help throw the line. Fish the worm anywhere from five- to 10- feet deep, depending on where the fish are hanging. Generally they are up in the water column early in the morning, but as the sun rises, they tend to go deeper. Adjust the depth if you're not getting bit and move around.

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Fly fishing up in the trophy area by boat yesterday, I did well using a #16 root beer zebra midge under a float three- to five-feet deep using 7x tippet. The other boats up there were also catching fish using flies under a float, probably some kind of midge or beaded scud.

I'm still catching trout on a small marabou jig using two-pound line in the mornings in various places. Black has been the best color although I'm throwing sculpin and brown, too, and doing well. When the water generation starts, you'll have to go to a heavier jig -- plus four-pound line is probably necessary. When the water starts running, the trout are not as line shy. Same for drifting bait on the bottom.


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So far this week starting Saturday my clients have had 5 browns over 20" and 3 bows over 20"  mostly on a crawler rig that Phil mentioned.  For the most part except drift rigs I'm using Orvis Mirage tippet on just about everything.  6X has been plenty good.  Mirage Flurocarbon  diameter is .005 in at 6X with a break strength of 3.1 lbs.

Early my clients are catching them on a 1/2 TJ Micro in olive head olive body and of course the pink worm power worm. 

The power worm is placed EXTREMELY STRAIGHT on a 125 oz. jig head size 14 hook.  It is super glued onto the shank and then after that drys its gets a drop of head cement.  This method of attachment has really helped the longivity of the bait.

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SUPPLEMENT:

I have only been fishing the catch and keep zone as my clients have wanted their fish.  The  contents of the stomachs has been totally filled with scuds and sow bugs in the size 18 to as big as size 10 range.  These fish have been pink meated and  packed full to exploding with these bugs.

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The average size of the fish we have been keeping is 14 to 15 inches.  My clients do not keep  browns of any size and rainbows are not kept if they exceed 16 inches.  There is no problem with that at all, as people are now understanding that catch and release is a part of preserving this wonderful fishery for future generations.

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Pictured is Ronnie De'Shon with a beautiful 18" rainbow catch and release Short Creek area Lake Taneycomo.

  Lilley's Landing  Guided Fishing

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Dad was down last weekend and echoed Bill's report on the location and quality of the fishing. Do you think a bunch of these fish came down out of the trophy area? They have to be in the lake a while eating scuds before they get that pink flesh, right? As hard as that area gets fished, it's a wonder that any rainbows last very long at all.

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First I've been lurking for awhile and finally joined the board.  Ive really enjoyed reading yall's Reports.  I have a question for you veterans of the lake.  I grew in the Pacific Northwest fishing for lakes and streams for trout.  Our go to lures were Mepps spinners and small spoons, with all the reports i've read no one seems to be utilizing either of these.  Are they just not effective on Tany or did the fishery just develop as a jig fishery? would i be wasting my time coming up there and trying my tried and true techniques from the PNW?

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Doc i don't throw either, i'm a jig man but i know from the Landing down spoons are very popular.  Lil' Jakes and Thomas Bouyant spoons catch a lot of trout down there.  I think alot of times it's cause they are freshly stocked and go for the shiny stuff.  My daughter is 8 and I tie her on one of these spoons with 4 pound test and start "ducking".....kidding about that part but she catches plenty of fish on these spoons and there will be times in fact that as she reels in there will be a dozen to 20 trout at a time in schools follow the spoons back to the boat.  I've found it's the easiest way for her to catch fish down lake while i'm fishing jigs.  So by all means heck yes throw those spoons, maybe some guys will chime in from above the landing but i know from the landing down they work very well.  Welcome to the board, tons of great info and people on here! 

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Spoons can and are effective, especially on fresh stocked fish. There is no stocking from Lilleys up and most of those fish are veterans 

You  can generate 5 times the bites on any type of natural over hardware most any time. Either live or a natural appearing fly or worm

i will tell you not everyone is catching at the rate I am.  I have just been really dialed in  and yes the fish move back and forth from the restricted zone to the upper catch and keep area. 

This is saying that fishing is very good if you know The Who, what, when , where and why. Phil dialed it up great in his report. You fluctuate much from what he detailed and you won’t like the results 

Good Luck

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I've fished the bouyant spoons and done best on both brown trout pattern and white.  I don't throw them much as I prefer a bigger jerk bait for targeting bigger fish while night fishing but I've caught a good amount of fish on them.  Caught white bass and walleye on mepps spinners too, again mostly at night in the trophy area.

I know @Seth has had some good luck with the Kastmaster ones too but not sure on size...

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I've caught a few fish on Cleos and Kastmasters, but I mainly just use them as locators to draw fish up and show themselves before throw jigs at them. Last year I started using a black rooster tail with a gold blade on occasion and had some success, but jigs were still a lot more productive.

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16 hours ago, DocTbeau said:

First I've been lurking for awhile and finally joined the board.  Ive really enjoyed reading yall's Reports.  I have a question for you veterans of the lake.  I grew in the Pacific Northwest fishing for lakes and streams for trout.  Our go to lures were Mepps spinners and small spoons, with all the reports i've read no one seems to be utilizing either of these.  Are they just not effective on Tany or did the fishery just develop as a jig fishery? would i be wasting my time coming up there and trying my tried and true techniques from the PNW?

Oh, they work. Get a Jake's Spin-a-Lure and you will catch fish. Like Babler said, generally better from Fall Creek on down. From the Landing all the way to Rockaway Beach I have caught, or witnessed being caught, multiple big fish. Try trolling them with weight on the bluff banks and without weight in the shallower areas. Or cast them. Can't go wrong. My buddy has caught multiple 5+ pound browns on Jake's from Bee Creek down to Powersite. It's bigger water and acts more like a traditional lake, so trolling is good. Dickey and I think downriggers could produce some huge fish down lake. 

Best colors I've had on the Jake's are gold/red, black/yellow and silver/red. Good luck!

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