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Bill Babler
Bill Babler

Table Rock Lake Current Fishing Report Cow Creek to Kimberling City

12-22-19  Table Rock Lake Fishing Report

Got our early out of the back ramp at Cow and all was quiet except the duck hunters that were banging away.  Surface temp was a smooth 52 degree and the water in the Cow Creek/Spring Branch area is very clear.  I could see my white spoon at 20+ ft.

Checked both the backs of Spring Branch and both Cows for bait and found some scattered but really very little, with but a few fish suspended and they were mostly singles.  I did catch one on a flutter spoon in Spring Branch as it was chasing up near the top and I heaved the spoon and he snagged it in under 5' of water over 100'.



Started looking on the main lake deep flats and  started to find shad with fish in them above them and below them.  DEEP, DEEP, DEEP. 

IMG_2976 (2).jpg

Really I got lucky,  I saw a pack of 11 loons that kept diving and diving and I charged right into the middle of them.  Here is the deal, they were on shad, but the shad were in 60' to 120' on the bottom. 


 Caught 2 brown fish at 89' on the bottom and they really thumped the Ice Jiggin Rap.  These shad were in an area, probably the size of a city block and the loons would streak clear down to them.  When they loons would get in them it would break them up and you could see the bass tearing thru picking up what ever singles they could.


Saw something I have never seen.  There were two loons that were diving and swirling and they were not going deep at all.  They were perhaps going down 20 ft.   They were by the boat and I could see the shad they were diving on and could see the loons with my eyes feeding on them.  It was remarkable.  Reminded me of Nat Geo . and the penguins going thru bait.  When they would come up they would have so many in their mouth they would spit 3 or 4 out about every time.  I had a couple of dozen shad floating around the boat that they had coughed up when I moved off a bit the gulls went crazy on them.  I also saw a Huge Golden Eagle.  It was a fantastic morning.


Caught 15, and everyone was a keeper.  Every fish came on the Ice Jig except the one on the flutter spoon.  Shallowest fish I caught was at 40' suspended and I saw her and raised up and she snached it. 


 Did the best just holding the bait really still and the jaws slammed it but the K's just loaded on it.  Tried the jigging spoon but not a single bite, kind of a no brainer this morning with the Ice Jig.


Going to be a great week out there, give her a whirl.

Good Luck

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32 minutes ago, Steve McBasser said:

 Used to, I thought 40' was deep. Now it seems like you have to go to 60 or 70' to get a consistant bite going. You can catch a few scattered fish in the 35-50 foot range but the bigger and more active schools are much deeper....

You can choose to fish that deep and more power to those who do, but there isn't a single day out of the year that it's necessary to fish deeper than 20 feet to catch bass consistently.

That's the beauty of Table Rock ---- there are always several different ways to catch them at the same hour of the same day. It's all a matter of how badly a guy wants to learn to effectively fish deep, shallow or in between. 

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I agree 100% Champ..... We always go for the shallow... and "inbetween" bite first. And, we seem to always find a few bass that want to play. But...... if you can find them clustered up deep and get them fired up, you can catch multiple fish sitting in one spot and its a ball. I'm looking for the deep fish just because I thinks its cool to catch them that deep. Last trip we caught some shallow on the ned rig and a jerk bait. Maybe 5-10' deep. But we also caught some 50-60' deep on an ice jig and a jigging spoon. I'm greedy.... I want it all. 

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Steve, we are seeing them deeper in the last 5 years, and this is simply because the bait has chosen to go that deep.  I have a Christmas morning report with some great graph shots to show, if I can get them pulled up.  I'm having a hard time.  One day I can pull them off the computer and the next day It won't give them to me.  Just don't understand it.

Again as Champ said they are shallow also, and they are a bit congregated as well.  I had 5 nice keepers yesterday off one long hog back ridge and they were all under 30' on a Pigsticker Quick 5 jig.  Just flat hammered it.

Kind of one of the strange things to me the last few years is the depth of some of these Jaw's.  As I stated I caught 2 the other day flat on the bottom 89' below a group of shad.  I have all ways fished deep, but until the last few years have not caught SM that deep.  Lots of biggins suspended and on the bottom in 50' plus.

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On 12/22/2019 at 9:14 PM, 96 CHAMP said:

Sounds like a real show going on there. Sometimes it’s not so much the fishing but everything else we get to see out there.

I don't deer hunt any longer, but when I did, I was that way about it.  I loved walking the woods, looking for signs of deer, seeing all the wildlife.  I'd sit in my stand for hours, happy as a lark.  I especially enjoyed deer camp.  Sitting around the fire at night, talking about the day, cooking on the Coleman stove.  We'd fry up the backstrap of the first deer, fry some taters and make gravy.  Don't want to shoot them any longer.  I just enjoy watching them now, but those were good times.

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1 hour ago, Bill Babler said:

Donna those are great memories.  We still love to watch them but also like to taste them.  Had fried back strap with mushroom gravy last night.  Also just being together with either friends or families during hunting season is so very special to me.

I think you nailed it Bill! It's not so much anymore about the kill, as it is about the hunt! It's all about spending quality time with friends and family!

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