Big trout still live in Taneycomo... they're getting educated.
We registered almost another 100 "catch-n-release trophies" in September and that's not counting a ton of 20+ inchers that were not reported to us, mainly by people fishing below the dam, I'd say. Then there were the ones caught and kept. If you boat up above the Narrows you'll see them swimming all over the place. But with the water down, they're easy to get to and were easy to catch... till they weren't.
I can't blame the slow fishing on just over educated fish... the little ones are being cagey too. Everybody wants to blame water quality but it's not that bad. Every time I check it it's over 4 ppm. Not great but they still gotta eat! Most of the fish I do catch fight hard, not as hard as they did this summer but they don't just roll over and come in. Had a couple take me to my backing this week so far.
The water color and clarity is off too. Water temp is 55-56.
There are good days though. The guides are catching most of their "eaters" on night crawlers and the pink worm under a float, mostly early - before 9 am.
I've heard the fly fishers below the dam are having a hard time hooking numbers. They are getting big fish though. But nothing like they should be.
I've been fly fishing mainly. Boating up to the trophy area and messing around with shallow fish feeding with fins out of the water. And targeting cruising trout on the flats. Mainly using #14 or #16 scuds with 7x tippet. We've had some days with good wind so the zebra midge is working. The other day when the wind REALLY blew I thought we'd clean up in the trophy area but not so. Disappointing, along with fly fishing, wind related frustration - you know what I mean!
Fishing is tough, but rewarding. I don't have to have big numbers - just one nice trout to the net every hour. And a couple of misses and break offs. That's a good afternoon.