Lake Taneycomo Fly Fishing Report
March 7, 2010
Family time on a jam-packed Lake Taneycomo
After going to church with both kids and my girl’s family, I decided to take Summer and her brother Corey out for an afternoon on Lake Taneycomo.
Temperatures were near 70-degrees, but it was extremely windy – more on that later. It is such a treat to be able to fish with loved ones, so I was committed to making this day a great experience for all of us.
The nice weather coupled with the start of spring break has drawn people to the water in swarms, and the boat traffic was definitely worse than normal. Anglers should prepare for crowded conditions for the remainder of the month. It did not take long for Corey to hook and land a very healthy 17-inch rainbow once we got the river boat on the water. He was so happy with this catch, as this was only his third time fly fishing.
After the hot start, it became quite a struggle to battle the wind and to find open space. As a guide, I must be ready to adapt to any sort of conditions, including wind and crowds, so we pulled into the slack water below Point Royal and let the wind help us slowly drift downstream. All three of us caught some chunky rainbows on midges, and the outing was saved. Everyone had a great time, and I cannot wait until I can get out on the water with close family again.
Low water could be a real possibility over the next week, as the entire region continues to be unusually dry. Pretty much every drop of excess water in system lakes is gone, and anglers in Arkansas are enjoying low water every afternoon on the Norfork. The White is still running for most of the day like on Lake Taneycomo, but this pattern will likely change very soon. Let’s hope any rains hold off long enough for everyone to enjoy some wading.
As I touched on above, be sure to expect more people and boats on the water than usual in March. Upper Taneycomo can be a particularly dangerous stretch because half of the craft on the water are oversized bass and lake boats. The wake from these vessels will knock down waders and swamp the appropriately-sized river boats on the water. Lake Taneycomo’s banks also take a real beating from the constant traffic, and it will not be long before erosion will adversely affect fishing productivity. I would love to see 25-horsepower restrictions put in place on the section from Fall Creek to Table Rock Dam. Those of us who want to fish safely should have a place to do that, and I feel that operating a boat that is disproportionately large on a narrow waterway violates the state’s prudent boat operating statutes. The benefit of restricting motors far outweighs the negatives.
The weather is looking nice for this upcoming week and the water is running much lower than it has been – plus, the fishing continues to be excellent. Please keep in mind that I definitely consider how crowded a spot is likely to be before guiding my clients in that area. When at all possible, I opt for places where we can spread out and enjoy nature. Only rarely is it impossible to find plenty of open water, but it can take a little more effort to escape the masses during spring and summer weekends.