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Boat Navigation Advice

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I have been fishing Taneycomo for about a year now. I have always fished a good ways down river from the Table Rock Dam. Normally I have fished from Branson Landing all the way down to the Powersite Dam at Forsyth. Have done really well and it has been alot of fun... but is a lot of fishing suspended fish.

I was wanting to start learning the upper sections of Taneycome beginning this Friday. In particular, from the MDC boat ramp downstream to Branson Landing. If anyone can help it would be greatly appreciated.

I use a 16 foot fully equipped performance johnboat with a 25 horse motor and very stout trolling motor. Here are a couple of questions I have....

1. Can I safely navigate downstream for several miles beginning at the MDC ramp and then safely navigate back upstream to the boatramp later in the day?

2. Should a guy launch there and basically just use his trolling motor and an anchor to position themselves as they basically just float downstream and then motor back up to the ramp when done?

3. Obviously it will depend to some degree on the fishing, but generally, how long does it take to fish from the MDC ramp to the end of the trophy area at Fall Creek?

4.How long from the end of the trophy area to Branson Landing?

5.Are there any ramps are available to launch/take out at between MDC ramp and Branson Landing? If so where are they located?

6 Any major technique changes needed in fishing styles after leaving the trophy area? (I know this sounds like a weird question.. but closer to Forsyth you might catch 30 fish a day... but they are caught at 20 feet depths by a variety of jigging, using countdown lures, or trolling with lead leaders) So I guess the question is really trying to pinpoint if the structure of the waterway changed in any way to require altered fishing styles.

7. How about changes in the waterway all the way to Branson landing?

8. Are there consistent hazards that a guy should be aware of from MDC Ramp to Branson Landing lest he leave a lower unit at the bottom of the river?

9. Any general advice on the successful fishing of, and/or safe naviation of, the area from MDC ramp to Branson Landing that you have found helpful.

Well...that is a bucketful of questions. I would be most appreciative of any helpful answers. As stated, I have been fishing the lower end toward Rockaway and Forsyth for a while. And although I have been catching lots of fish I really want to expand the horizon and learn to enjoy the upper reaches of Taneycomo as well. Thanks in advance for any help in enabling me to expedite the learning curve on it.

The Fisher

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My answer to all your qestions is....

Welcome to the forum... :lol:

Seriously, I can't help you, but I know someone here will be able to help...



"There he stands, draped in more equipment than a telephone lineman, trying to outwit an organism with a brain no bigger than a breadcrumb, and getting licked in the process." - Paul O’Neil

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Putting in at MDC by the dam depends on what the water is doing. There are a lot of shoals between there and short creek. The MDC ramp at Cooper Creek off Fall Creek Road is much better and you can motor up as long as some water is running. Watch all the creek mouths for gravel shoals that extend way in to the lake. Most of your other questions are answered already on the current threads.

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Look at the maps section above. A better plan may be to put in at cooper creek (really nice public ramp) and boat up as far as you are comfortable and then to get below fall creek if you think that the water is getting too low. There are several tricky places around fall creek and up stream that you can run aground if you are not familar with the channel when the water is low. There are also some big rocks on the deep (left) side as you go up stream.

Down stream from Fall creek it gets shallow at short creek. Stay to your left on the way down stream and the cut to your right as you run out of lake.

There are many great places to loose a lower unit on Tany.

In general I think that it is a mistake to boat above lookout unless the water is high and they are generating.

Get out with someone who know the tricks and do not get in too big of a hurry and watch out.

Good luck, your rig should be fine for Tany.


PS Never anchor when they are generating, things can change in a hurry

"This is not Nam. This is bowling. There are rules."

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twosets pretty much summed it up. I do not run a motor boat above the island below the old KOA unless they are running a LOT of water. The area's also lousy with fly fishermen most of the time on low water. And that's just dangerous and rude. They've got a very small amount of wadeable water compared to the boatable water.


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Thomas Jefferson

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Thanks for the input and advice. Let me see if I am getting the picture clearly. As a general rule it would be wise to basically stay from Point Loookout downstream unless tons of water are being generated. If I want to fish above that point it is generally better to fish it by wading. This is a safety factor for your boat and just decent manners because the water will have lot's of wade fishermen upstream from Lookout if there is no generation going on.

If they are generating, and at some point I want to go above Lookout, be sure it is with someone who has been there before. Basically like running a shallow river anywhere...lot's of rocks, shoals, and gravel bars to eat up props and lower units.

Is that about the size of things? I appreciate the help guys.

Good Fishing To Ya,

The Fisher

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Twosets, your words are very wise. ie Been there done that!

My Ole Pap once told me you never learn anything from someone else's advice, unless you are a very smart person. It usually has to cost you money or hurt ya. You always hope, not to much or not to bad.

I have spend some money on upper taney, and I know you have too, Part of our on going educational process.

Be careful in a boat up there, anywhere above Fall Creek. Things are not always what they appear to be. WATCH OUT FOR SHORT CREEK, IT IS A MOTOR KILLER IN THE FIRST DEGREE. In front of Fall Creek Dock is just as bad, as the delta created by Fall Creek is a monster. There is really on, flat water, no generation, only about 20 ft. of navigatable water on the far left flat bank.

Start at Cooper. Gain knowledge and gradually work your way up to Lookout, and then maby Clay Banks.

Once you are up there fish slowley, this is not usually going to be a great experience for first timers, you must learn the shoals, holes and Big, Big Rocks. This is not the fishing Valhaila, you have to work to gain their respect. Don't expect it to be teeming with keeper Browns and huge rainbow, it gall's my chaps that people call this the "Trophy Area".

It is the RESTRICTED AREA, where fishing methods are governed more closely to promote a safer region and allow the fish to live longer periods after they have reached the 12 inch mark.

On a whole, I can usually catch much bigger fish on average in the non-restricted area. If clients wish to keep a few eaters, you are always better from Cooper Creek Down.

Once up there don't fish an hour and run back out, past all the people that had to get out of your way in the first place. Work slowley and carefully and have a great time. I know most of the guys in that area and don't hesitate to ask another boat that you see doing well the What, When and How, of it. most will be glad to share.

Too me, the fish in this area have had to run a gauntlet to get there and once they have achieved that, they have my respect, and I'm going to be mighty careful with them.

Good Luck.

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