LAKE TANEYCOMO – PART 1   Leave a comment


Since 1913 the construction of a dam near Forsyth, MO on the White River has controlled the flow.  Later construction led to what the formation of Lake Taneycomo.  The name is a shortened version of Taney County Missouri.

In the early years up to 1959, the lake was a warm water lake.  With the addition of water from Table Rock Dam in that year the water became a cold water fishery virtually over night.  The average water temperature year round is about 48-degrees.  Once the formation of the cold water lake was complete, the Missouri Department of Conservation built a trout hatchery at the foot of the dam.  Since then they add over 800,000 rainbow and brown trout to the lake each year.

Today the lake offers some of the best rainbow and brown trout fishing found anywhere.

Anglers plying these waters have a limit of four fish per day.

Left to their own, trout deposit their eggs in gravel of stream bed nests.  Eight weeks later they eggs hatch and the young fish (fry) remain in the gravel living off food absorbed from the yolk sac.  About the time the sac is absorbed they emerge and feed on microscopic aquatic organisms.

From the many eggs deposited in the gravel only a few young emerge and survive to adulthood.  Floods, silt, drought and predators take a severe toll on them.  Under natural conditions relatively few trout reach a catchable size desired by anglers.  Thus it is necessary to stock fish on a regular basis in Lake Taneycomo in order to maintain this fantastic recreation fishery.

With this year-round fishing experience, anglers using fly fishing and artificial lures only fish the Trophy Section Area near the lake’s headwaters.  Bait fishing anglers ply the other sections outside the Trophy area.  In the intervening years the lake produces a number of state record rainbow and brown trout.

The ever popular rainbow trout us a sight feeder who will actively pursue a variety of artificial lures and flies as well as live bait.  Anglers catch them all along the lake.  The brown trout seem to locate in the undercut banks and behind gravel bars.  From there they will attack nightcrawlers and flies.  In the spring and fall they prefer live bait drifted along the bottom.   They will take jerk baits that imitate minnows.  Most productive is the area just below the dam for several miles.

During the periods when power is not be generated the lake is both a lake and a river.  Up near Mile Marker 22 at the junction of State Highways 165 and 265 it resembles a river and bank and wade fishing is popular.  By the time one gets to Mile Marker 1 the water is deeper.  It is here that the Power Site Dam at Forsyth produces warmer water.

When the Table Rock Dam generates electricity it produces a current through the entire length of the lake making it resemble a cold, fast running river.  Just how cold, deep and fast depends upon how many generators are active.

Information about the generation schedule is available on line at  Current generation information is available by telephone at 417-336-5083.  Other information is found on the website



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