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Catching Lake of the Ozarks bass in September


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Lake of the Ozarks bass anglers need to “go with the flow” to get in on the best fishing action during September.

By September, the summer heat has generated bath-water temperatures and depleted oxygen levels in the shallows of lakes and ponds throughout the state.  These conditions make for some tough fishing during the month, but anglers can still catch plenty of fish at Lake of the Ozarks by seeking waters with plenty of current.  When fishing the headwaters of the lake, bass anglers will discover the current in these waters create a cool, oxygen-rich environment that makes bass more aggressive feeders. So Lake of the Ozarks anglers should “go with the flow” for the best bass action at the lake during early fall.

When September arrives, veteran tournament angler Mike Malone starts running up the Osage arm of the lake to catch bass. 

“Those fish are moving at that time and the baitfish are moving and bass get predominantly on those mud flats (on the upper Osage arm),” he says.  “If you can figure out what area of that upper reach is on you are going to catch a bunch.”

The Lake Ozark angler keys on the main lake flats rather than back in the creeks because current is more predominant there. “There is usually a two- to three-hour window where they turn on the water (at Truman Dam),” Malone says.  “As long as there is movement to the water, those fish get positioned and are very predictable as to where they are going to be and how to catch them.”

Malone usually finds bass around boat docks where the fish remain less than 4 feet deep. “I have a milk run where I might hit 30 to 40 docks up there starting at about Proctor Creek all the way up to the 88-mile marker,” he says.  “Sometimes the fish are on the outside ends of the docks.  If they are not running current the fish might be on the backs of the docks.”

Malone’s favorite lures for throwing around the docks include a black/red flake flipping tube, black/chartreuse jig with blue plastic chunk, a 1/2-ounce white/chartreuse spinnerbait and black/chartreuse wake bait.   

Anglers unfamiliar with this section need to be cautious while navigating the upper lake because it contains lots of shallow mud flats on the main lake and in coves.  “It’s not an area where you want to go fast if you don’t know where you are going,” Malone says.  He recommends using good electronics and mapping to navigate safely in this section of the lake.

For information on lodging and other facilities at the Lake of the Ozarks or to receive a free vacation guide, call the Lake of the Ozarks Convention & Visitors Bureau at 1-800-FUN-LAKE or visit the Lake of the Ozarks Convention and Visitors Bureau web site at funlake.com.  

For copies of John Neporadny’s THE Lake of the Ozarks Fishing Guide call 573/365-4296 or visit www.jnoutdoors.com.

 

 

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A strong case for the phenomenon of  "It ain't what you know, it's what you believe".

If it had anything to do with current and oxygen then the busiest (high traffic) area of the lake should get the nod.  But because there is a belief that the upper Osage is positively effected by those little squirts of stagnant water from Truman then the guys that believe it, will stay up there and fish it better.   Truth is that no matter what section of the lake you're on, if you stay there and keep at it you will figure out a good bite.  

A reason to believe you should stay there and keep trying is all you truly need.   Nobody from the weekday evening hog fights is running to the upper Osage, and they'll be catching 20+# sacks in 4 hours this September.   You aren't gonna do that with any consistency above Proctor.  So save your gas and stay where you're at.

 

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21 minutes ago, shrapnel said:

Current?  On LOZ?  What's that...Bagnell Dam only opens more than 1000CFS now in extreme rain situations.

Oh but when they do...

I fish the lower end primarily for “OTL” (other than largemouth) and I LOVE when they pull water.  I can sit in one spot and literally get tired of catching fish, many of which are nice LM.  As far as running up the river I’m with FW, the only time I’d think the bite may be worth the run is early spring - in a NON A-rig derby.

Mike

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10 minutes ago, nomolites said:

Oh but when they do...

I fish the lower end primarily for “OTL” (other than largemouth) and I LOVE when they pull water.  I can sit in one spot and literally get tired of catching fish, many of which are nice LM.  As far as running up the river I’m with FW, the only time I’d think the bite may be worth the run is early spring - in a NON A-rig derby.

Mike

I check Amerens chart almost daily, generation has been almost nil all year.  They let the minimum they can out to keep the river from drying up and that's about it I think.

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When they are trying to stay on Wrench’s Guide Curve early in the year they pull almost every time it rains; this summer with the dry weather has been another story.  They have their play book and they stick to it....but that can make them predictable too.

Mike

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45 minutes ago, nomolites said:

When they are trying to stay on Wrench’s Guide Curve early in the year they pull almost every time it rains; this summer with the dry weather has been another story.  They have their play book and they stick to it....but that can make them predictable too.

Mike

I'm not complaining fishing has been very good.  I've just never been able to be in the right place at the right time when they were pulling water and 5lb bass were stacked up on points facing upstream chomping anything that gets pulled by.

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2 minutes ago, shrapnel said:

I'm not complaining fishing has been very good.  I've just never been able to be in the right place at the right time when they were pulling water and 5lb bass were stacked up on points facing upstream chomping anything that gets pulled by.

Agree!  Me either, and I've been fishing this lake hard since 1987

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Really I believe any poor fishing  in some periods in the fall has to do with the fishes own time clock. I think this past few weeks there has been a lot of very selective feeding on shad. There is nothing in this world like a live shad or smell like one. When they get into that type mood catching quality fish on anything else becomes difficult .  I believe this is triggered by the length of day,Moon phases and other changes in there natural environment.I think these natural things are telling them winter is on the way. 

Like wrench says. And I know he knows. There are places in all of LOZ where where sudden inflow can make for real good fishing But you got to be there for the where and when of it.  I have not fished the upper lake in years but when I did and there was a current I used to fish it a bit like a slow flowing river  figuring  the current into  a lot in my presentation.     

  

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