McConaughy about 40 years ago. We don’t have many stripers in the lake anymore. McConaughy also produces good crappie and smallmouth bass action.” While fishing a swimbait in Lake McConaughy on June 14, 2020, Tou Kong Vang of Westminster, Colo. set the new state record for hybrid bass. Vang’s bass weighed 21 pounds, 9 ounces and measured 36 inches long. White bass and wipers gather
in huge schools and roam the open waters over the old river channel looking for baitfish. Many anglers troll for them. When big white bass and wipers chase baitfish to the surface, tempt them with lipless crankbaits, conventional shad-pattern crankbaits, blade baits, jerkbaits, spinnerbaits, or spoons. The lake can also produce big smallmouth bass, particularly at the eastern end. Fish rocky
points with tube jigs, spinnerbaits, jerkbaits, or crankbaits. Fish the deeper channel edges and drop-offs with small soft-plastic grubs on drop-shot rigs. People can also catch channel and flathead catfish. Channel cats average about five to 10 pounds, but some flatheads exceed 30 pounds. For something completely different, try Lake Ogallala on the east side of Kingsley Dam. Cold water from the bottom of the dam chills the 320-acre tailrace lake. It offers anglers some of the best “ If the wind picks up and makes fishing at McConaughy difficult, rainbow trout fishing on the Great Plains. “Lake Ogallala has an excellent rainbow trout fishery including some big trout in the six- to 10-pound range,” Bauer advised. “It’s really convenient. If the wind picks up and makes fishing at McConaughy difficult, people can go in the tailrace and have a blast catching trout.” Dining and lodging are plentiful in the town of Ogallala. The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission operates a state recreation area at the lake. For fishing regulations and licenses, see http://outdoornebraska.gov. For area information, contact the Ogallala/Keith County Chamber of Commerce at 800-658-4390. Online, see www.visitogallala.com. people can go in the tailrace and have a blast catching trout. ”
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48 • NBS OUTDOOR • Fall 2020
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