It's time to celebrate! Two things have happened this week that should cause any trout fishermen on Lake Taneycomo to rejoice. The first is that Table Rock Lake has turned completely over -- our water is now a little colder and rich in oxygen. Secondly, Table Rock Lake has dropped below its seasonal power pool, and generation has slowed to a minimal flow. And I think we should start to see periods of no generation any day.
With the turn over, we're seeing some turbidity in our water again just like we witnessed a few weeks ago. This is normal and will clear up in the coming weeks.
The life of our fish has been restored to normal. They have been feeding more aggressively, and when hooked, fighting very hard. Also now when releasing a fish, we don't have to worry so much about it surviving. They should do fine if we are careful about how we handle them.
Quick reminder on catch and releasing trout:
- Try not to touch the fish at all, but if you do, wet your hand or -- if using a rag -- wet the rag. A dry rag will do a lot of damage to the fish, removing the slimy protection on their skin.
- If the hook is buried in the fish's mouth/throat, cut the line and leave the hook. It has a better chance of surviving than if you were to try to remove the hook.
- Of course, don't keep trout out of the water very long.
We've seen a pretty good jig bite since the turnover. I haven't identified the best color, but they seemed to be hitting darker colors better than light colors. And with the water slowing down, I'm going to smaller sized jigs such as 1/16th- and 1/32nd-ounce.
We've been blessed with huge midge hatches during the day. Fish come up and take them off the surface but not in big numbers.
The scud bite continues to be the best way to catch some good quality rainbows, both above and below Fall Creek. Drift them on the bottom or use them under a float, as long as they're close to or on the bottom. With the water running slower, I'd go to a smaller scud--- may be a #14 or #16 gray, tan or brown.
We're carrying minnows again. I wouldn't be afraid to drift a minnow on the bottom for a big brown or even a rainbow. Of course, night crawlers are working well. Real, red salmon eggs have also been excellent off the dock the last couple of weeks, too.