Fishing report: Anglers treated to stellar fishing just about everywhere

Braxtin, a little guy from Ottawa, Kan., was excited to dress up for Halloween as a fisherman to be like his dad, Tyler Erwin.
Braxtin, a little guy from Ottawa, Kan., was excited to dress up for Halloween as a fisherman to be like his dad, Tyler Erwin. Submitted photo

Here is the fishing report for Kansas and Missouri lakes and reservoirs for the week of October 31, 2018.


BULL SHOALS: low to mid 60s, clear, about 4.7 feet low. Outlook: Del Colvin Guide Service reports: The spoon bite is starting to pick up. Certain areas of the lake are turning over. Overall, fish are shallow and the bite is picking up in the morning on topwater, try spooks, whopper ploppers or buzz baits on wind blown banks. Keep your eyes open for the bait fish. If you find the shad, you’re going to have success! Pulling a wake bait through schools of fish can be productive. If there’s wind, a spinner bait will produce as well. As the day progresses head out deeper and drag a jig out to 15 feet near docks with shade and steeper banks with chunk rock. Below the dam: John Berry of Berry Bros. Guide Service reports: The White has fished well. There was no wadable water in the last week. The hot spot has been Rim Shoals. They are still hitting grasshoppers for some nice top water action. The hot flies were olive woolly buggers (#8, #10), Y2Ks (#14, #12), prince nymphs (#14), zebra midges (black with silver wire and silver bead or red with silver wire and silver bead #16, #18), pheasant tails (#14), ruby midges (#18), root beer midges (#18), pink and cerise San Juan worms (#10), and sowbugs (#16). Double fly nymph rigs have been very effective (my current favorite combination is a beadhead pheasant tail nymph (#14) with a ruby midge (#18) suspended below it. Use weight to get your flies down.

TANEYCOMO: 53 degrees, clear (12 feet), very little generation of water in last week Outlook: Lilleys’ Landing reports: wadable water below the dam has been ample for bank fisherman. Rainbows especially hug the banks with their backs out of the water sometimes, digging in the gravel to pick up a bug or two. Casting a small sow bug or scud, even a big mop worm or mega worm, and working it in and around these feeding rainbows will catch them. These trout are typically veterans, too, full of colors and larger than the young stockers just arriving on the scene. Anglers have scored big browns and rainbows stripping soft hackles and cracklebacks well below the hatchery outlets and below Rebar and the Chute (below the Missouri Department of Conservation boat ramp) where the current is still moving from the area but is slower, not calm. If there is a breeze and a chop on the surface that’s even better. You can try streamers like sculpins, Hybernators, leaches, woolly buggers and Pine Squirrels. Strip these in the bigger, deeper pools out in front of outlet #1, the pool below outlet #2 and from the Rocking Chair down to the Chute. Throwing a 1/32nd-ounce jigs with two-pound line is catching some good fish around the dock and up lake around Short Creek. Sculpin/ginger or brown/orange with a brown head best colors. If you’re using four-pound line, throw a 3/32nd-ounce jig instead. Join Southwest Missouri Area Fishing Facebook group for fishing updates from an engaged membership.

NORFORK: 67 degrees, clearing up, about 2.5 feet low. Outlook: Bink’s Guide Service reports: Crappie are good on main lake brush piles on little jigs or spoons. Lake is still turning over in areas. Topwater baits early and late for largemouth and whites has been the best bite.

LONGVIEW: 55 degrees, murky, normal. Outlook: Longview Marina reports: fishing has been hit or miss. Crappie are about all that’s been biting consistently. Fishing is available from the marina 7 days a week now. Hours are 8am-3pm at the marina through November. Join Lee’s Summit Area Fishing Facebook group for daily updates.

POMME DE TERRE: low to mid 60s, clear, about normal (a little high). Outlook: Muskie Guide Service reports: They’re running 250 cubic feet per second. Crappie have been hitting on jigs and minnows over brush piles 12-13 feet down in 21 feet of water. Bass have been hitting on shallow running crankbaits in the back of coves. Muskies are slow.

LAKE OF THE OZARKS: 63 degrees, stained, 1.8 feet low. Outlook: Gier’s Bass Pro reports: not much changing. Crappie – are starting to move to brush in 10 feet. Minnows or jigs. Bass are starting to chase shad, topwater and shallow running crankbaits have been good. Bigger fish are still a little deeper for now. Spinnerbait bite has been picking up.

REED AREA: 50 degrees, clear, normal. Outlook: Missouri Department of Conservation reports: there haven’t been many anglers out in the past week. Some crappie have been caught. Bass fishing has been fair to good with good sizes being caught.

STOCKTON: 59 degrees, clear, 4.2 feet low. Outlook: Stockton Lake Guide Service reports: walleye have been fair. Crappie are good on jigs and minnows in brush piles 8-10 feet down. White bass are in hiding. Catfish are fair on shad sides around 10 feet. Bass are moving shallow, try square bills in 5-7 feet of water. Join Southwest Missouri Area Fishing Facebook group for fishing updates from an engaged membership.

JACOMO: upper 50s/low 60s, stained, normal Outlook: Lee’s Summit Area Fishing Facebook group reports: about the same as last week. White bass are biting very well. Some anglers have been getting them on whopper ploppers and others have simply used white rooster tails or crappie jigs. In general, look for fish to be moving shallow. Spinnerbaits on windy banks are really good in the fall. Topwater early and late can be productive. Crappie are being caught around the docks. Join Lee’s Summit Area Fishing Facebook Group for daily updates.

BLUE SPRINGS: upper 50s/low 60s, stained, a little high high Outlook: Lee’s Summit Area Fishing Facebook Group reports: White bass and wipers continue being caught in good numbers. The blowhole has been a productive area. Largemouth bass are fair, with solid keepers being caught regularly. Join Lee’s Summit Area Fishing Facebook Group for daily updates.

TABLE ROCK: 66 degrees, clear (7 feet), about 5 feet low. Outlook: Eric Prey of Focused Fishing Guide Service reports: Fish are moving shallower as the water temperature drops. Topwater baits around cedar trees early and late in the day has been very productive. Most everything else is the same. Football jigs and shaky heads 12-20 feet down on main lake gravel and mixed gravel/rock points is a good bite. Spinnerbaits on rocky banks on windy days in less than 10 feet deep is also productive. Top water on steeper banks early and late or on cloudy days will catch fish. Join Southwest Missouri Area Fishing Facebook group for fishing updates from an engaged membership.

TRUMAN: low to mid 60s, muddy, 2.6 feet high. Outlook: Jeff Faulkenberry’s Endless Season Guide Service reports: same as last week. Crappie are good to excellent moving into fall pattern. Some fish being caught in the creeks in 10-12 feet of water on bottom. Catfish are spotty, but fair. Look for them on creek channel ledges 15-18 feet down. White bass/hybrids – not much word in the last week. Largemouth - good using spinnerbaits. Channel catfish - fair to good on flats and channel swings about 8-11 feet down. Cut shad or prepared baits will produce fish.

SMITHVILLE: 54 degrees, clear, about normal. Outlook: Burton’s Bait and Tackle reports: about the same as last week. White bass have been very good near windy, rocky main lake points. They can be caught from the rock jettys which are easily available for bank fisherman. Road runners or small rooster tails are effective. The more wind the better. Crappie are fair, but some really nice ones have been caught recently jigging minnows or jigs around the docks. The courtesy docks will open to the public on November 1st. 65 boats were in the year end fish off tournament. The two day winning weight was just over 35 pounds of bass.

MOZINGO LAKE: mid 50s, 1-2 feet of clarity, normal. Outlook: Fishing With Nordbye YouTube channel reports: Clarity is a little more stained. Bass have been good. They are on trees, points, and sparse grass. Fall patterns are in effect. They been hitting a Boyd duckett squarebill on the rocks and topwater buzzbaits shallow. They are biting texas rigs and jigs, as well as chatterbaits and squarebills around grass. They have been hitting a Tightlines UV 4” Jig Trailer on the texas rig around trees. Crappie are good. Try fishing next to deeper trees in coves toward main lake or main lake brush piles. Most crappie are 7-8 feet down with an occasional crappie between 10-14 feet. Jigs or minnows are best. Bluegill are good. They are spread out, some shallow around grass, some deeper on points and next to trees. Best baits are worms, crickets, and panfish jigs. Join Northwest Missouri Area Fishing Facebook Group for more updates on Mozingo and more.


SHAWNEE MISSION PARK: 56 degrees, Murky, Normal Outlook: Trout are good on worms and power bait. Crappie/panfish are fair to good on worms. Catfish are good on dough bait. Bass/wipers are fair to good on jigs or chicken liver under a bobber.

KILL CREEK PARK: 58 degrees, murky, normal Outlook: Trout are good on worms and power bait. Crappie/panfish are fair to good on worms. Bass are fair to good on jigs. Catfish are fair on dough bait.

COFFEY COUNTY: low 60s lake wide, at the outlet it’s 78, stained, above normal. Outlook: Coffey County reports: smallmouth really picked up in the last week. White bass and channel catfish were biting well, too. Blue catfish were outstanding so it’s time to get after them.

MELVERN: 58 degrees, stained, 3.3 feet high. Outlook: Melvern Lake Marina reports: Crappie are poor with a lot of small fish caught, some keepers in and around established brush piles in Turkey Creek west of the State Park. Dark jigs and minnows are still best. Smallmouth are poor along the shoreline and rip rap face of the dam using spoons and shallow crankbaits. White bass are poor to fair lake wide on shallow crankbaits. Largemouth Bass are poor with no reports. Channel catfish - are good on nightcrawlers and cut bait. Blue Catfish are good using cut bait and crappie entrails. Walleye are poor with a few shorts caught on the south side of lake near points of coves.

CLINTON: 55 degrees, stained, 0.7 feet low. Outlook: Kansas Angling Experience Guide Service reports: The lake has gone through it’s fall turnover and has already began to recover. Wipers/White Bass: good. Fish are fattening up for winter and big fish are being caught. There is an abundance of shad right now and you can often locate fish by following the seagulls and pelicans. Walleye: fair. Some Walleye & Sauger are being caught, also feeding up for winter. You may find some mixed in with Wipers and White Bass using the same baits. Crappie: fair. Fish are being caught on brush piles and channel breaks. Will not be long before they group up in brush on their winter pattern. All ramps usable. Join Northeast Kansas Area Fishing Facebook Group for daily fishing updates.

POMONA: upper 50s, stained, about 2 feet high. Outlook: Lighthouse Bay Marina reports: still pretty slow overall. Releasing a lot of water. Some crappie have been found in the last week 10 feet down. Catfish can still be productive on chicken liver or cut bait.

PERRY: mid to upper 50s, stained, 4 feet high. Outlook: Don and Tom’s Bait and Tackle reports: crappie tournament on Saturday had a winning weight of just under 7 pounds. Some big ones have been caught, though. Some walleye and sauger have been reported in the last week as well. Blue catfish have been fair drift fishing up in the north end.

MILFORD: 58 degrees, stained, 9.5 feet high Outlook: Kansas Department of Wildlife reports: KDWPT last updated 10/23. Catfish are fair along flooded flats on cut bait, worms, and shrimp. Crappie are fair 10 feet deep suspended near points, flooded brush, and ledges on jigs and minnows; walleye are fair and scattered near flats, points or ledges using jigs, worms, and crankbaits 10-20 feet deep; white bass/wipers – fair along windy banks, humps, and points chasing shad, try jigs, spoons, jigs, crankbaits and topwater have been very good lately; smallmouth – fair near deep gravel/rock points and banks on jigs, crank baits, and topwater lures; largemouth – fair near points and deeper coves with brush/rock on jigs, crank baits, spinner baits, and topwater lures. Join Northeast Kansas Area Fishing Facebook Group for daily updates.

HILLSDALE: 53 degrees, stained, 1.3 feet high. Outlook: Jayhawk Marina reports: Crappie – fair using minnows in 6-10 feet deep; channel catfish – fair on chicken liver, worms, or stink bait on the bottom and river channels. No reports on walleye or largemouth. The fishing dock opens at 7am, kids 12 and under are free. Join Northeast Kansas Area Fishing Facebook Group for daily updates.

LA CYGNE: 78 degrees at hot water outlet, low to mid 60s, clear, normal. Outlook: Linn County Park reports: Some good bass were caught in the tournament over the week. Crappie were biting very well still. A 30-pound flathead was caught.

GLEN ELDER (WACONDA LAKE): 52 degrees, clear, 3 feet high Outlook: Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism reports: KDWPT last updated 10/22. Crappie are fair. Look around flooded habitat along the banks early in the day and late in the evening. The fish will move to the deeper brush piles and other structure during the day. Fishing with minnows is best. Walleye are fair to good near the state park shoreline, especially off the main lake points, near the dam, and in Walnut Creek this time of year. Try trolling with crankbaits or vertically jigging slabs or swim baits. White bass/wipers are good along the Cawker City causeway, the upper end of Walnut Creek, near the outlet with the high releases, off the rocky banks in the state park, and off main lake points and foundations. They are very aggressive now so finding them is typically the hardest part as they will be willing to bite on just about any traditional lure. Black bass have been good. Topwater is effective, but using plastic worms, Senkos, and Ned rigs will also work well. Catfish are good nearly lake wide. Anglers should concentrate near the outlet with the current outflows and up the rivers and creeks where there is still some inflow. Shad sides, shad gizzards, chicken liver, and shrimp are all good baits to try now.

TUTTLE CREEK: 62 degrees, stained, 28.7 feet high. Outlook: Kansas Department of Wildlife reports: last KDWPT online update was 10/9. The lake is very high. Crappie are fair on jigs and minnows. White bass are slow. Catfish are fair to good on cut bait or liver where the creeks enter the lake or around Fancy Creek with worms. Channels are up shallow feeding up with the water level coming up and will take a worm. Fishing for blues has been good in the river below the reservoir with fresh cut bait. Be sure to check any blue catfish for a yellow tag in its back and report the tag number and the general location of the catch to (785) 539-7941 or ely.sprenkle@ks.gov. Largemouth bass are slow, but coves in the southern third of the reservoir have decent populations of bass and McIntyre Cove tends to produce the best. Saugeye – fair and the river pond has been the best place for them so far this year dragging a nightcrawler or casting jigs and crankbaits. There is a 15-inch minimum length limit on the reservoir, but it does not apply to saugeye in the river pond or at the “tubes”. Join Northeast Kansas Area Fishing Facebook Group for daily updates.

WILSON: low 60s, stained, about 1 foot high. Outlook: Knothead’s Bait Shop reports: flatheads on bluegill has picked up in the last week. Stripers are being caught with more regularity in the coves on the west end. Walleye – a few more anglers are getting into the walleye using swimbaits and dropping them to the bottom, look for them 8-18 feet or up in or around grass, trolling crankbaits or jigging nightcrawlers have been effective. Fishing your baits slow will produce the most. Black bass – both largemouth and smallmouth continue to be good, but more largemouth are being caught lately, white has been a good color on baits. Bite for both species has really picked up on swimbaits; white perch – have slowed down, try up in Hell Creek and you’ll find them in the deeply stained water; channel and blue catfish – fair to good, mostly on the west end.

EL DORADO: low to mid 60s, stained, 0.4 feet high. Outlook: Wildlife, Parks & Tourism reports: KDWPT last updated 10/12. Blue catfish fair. Creeks and areas with inflow will be a good bet using live or fresh cut bait. There is a 25 to 35-inch protective slot limit with daily creel limit of five per day with no more than two 35 inches and longer. Wipers – good. Watch for surface feeding activity in the evenings and use shad imitating lures such as jig and plastics, spoons, crankbaits, or inline spinners. Be sure to properly ID your catch as there is a 21-inch minimum length limit and 2/day creel limit on wiper. White bass – fair and same as wiper report. White Perch – slow, look along breaks or on humps using small jigs, spoons, or spinners. White crappie – good and are being found 12-15 feet deep near timber in deeper water or on brush piles on jigs or minnows. Channel catfish – fair to good drifting fresh shad on the flats is a good tactic this time of year. Liver and stink baits fished on the bottom on windy points or shorelines is also producing. Walleye – fair on medium sized crank baits (#7 and #9) trolled along breaks, windy flats, and old roads have been catching walleye. Vertically fishing slab spoons near old roads or ledges also producing.

Tyler Mahoney is a Rockhurst University-educated outdoors fanatic who works to support his hunting and fishing habits. Read more of his next-generation insight at mahoneyoutdoors.com.

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