Lake of the Ozarks: Fishing
If you are a fishing enthusiast and want to enjoy fishing year round, then there is no better place on the earth than the Lake of Ozarks. Whether you are a professional angler or just love the outdoors, you can indulge in this pastime here at the Lake of Ozarks. The fishing season at the Lake of the Ozarks starts in early January and goes until late December. So when you visit the Lake of Ozarks during summer, winter, spring or fall, you will always find a fish to catch. With an angle in your hand, you can spend hours enjoying a cold beverage and reeling them in. The Lake of Ozarks has even produced state record catches with an amazing 111 pound paddlefish. This 90 mile long lake is filled with Largemouth Bass, Smallmouth Bass, Kentucky Bass, Black and White Crappie, Catfish, Rock Bass, Bluegill, White Bass and of course the rare Paddlefish. Fishing is HUGE here, literally and figuratively. There is always something biting at the Lake of the Ozarks and the scenery is extremely beautiful plus the lake has several isolated coves to fish in or enjoy a swim.
The bass is eagerly sought out by most anglers any time of the day and the Lake of Ozarks has a plethora of them! Largemouth Bass holds the top place as a sport fish. You can find them well distributed through out the lake. This big game fish spawns in spring and are near shore. April and May can supply the largest number of Largemouth Bass. In summer, they are deeply submerged and return to shallow waters during the fall. Night fishing can be done in September and October. The same holds true for Smallmouth Bass and Kentucky Bass. Don’t forget the White Bass! It is known for its great table fair.
Crappie fishing provides another great catch and of coarse a great meal! The spawning occurs in April but the local anglers can always find Crappie hidden around the heated fishing docks. Surprised? So the next time you are struggling to catch a Crappie, just turn to the heated docks!
If you are looking for thrilling fishing vacation at Lake of Ozarks, then try fishing for paddlefish or spoonbill. This is a rare fish which is huge and rods are not sufficient. You need trolls and sinkers to get hold of these fish. Though it seems tough to catch, it is a dream come true for all you fishing aficionados. Did I tell you that Paddlefish is a remnant of the dinosaur age? So go for it the next time you are fishing at the Lake of Ozarks during March and April.
A word of caution would be to remember that the Missouri Department of Conservation have some strict rules and regulations made for fishing at the Lake of Ozarks like the 15 fish limit for certain fish, 9 inch limit for Crappie fishing etc. Please check it out before venturing into the Lake of Ozarks.
Fishing is thrilling and all you fun loving guys planning a fishing vacation must come to Lake of Ozarks and you will never regret it!
Lake Of The Ozarks Fishing Supplies
Not an angler or experienced fisherman? That's okay there are plenty of ways to help you hone your skills while at the Ozarks. With bait and tackle stores and several places to rent a boat located near or around the lake area. See below.
Laurie, MO (Lake of the Ozarks)
Bryants Osage Outdoors LLC is your #1 source for freshwater fishing equipemnt, marine supplies, log furniture, candles, gourmet foods, giftware, holiday decor and much much more.
716 N. Main Street
Laurie, MO 65037
Back to Top
When you come to Lake of the Ozarks to enjoy the fine fishing on offer, you can also find some great fishing and bait stores located in the Marinas and most popular fishing access areas. Whether you are a tournament angler of a catfish trot liner, you will be able to find a massive selection of rods, reels, lines, lures, and a great selection of live bait. From night crawlers and red wrigglers, to minnows and gold fish, there is bound to be some bait that takes your fancy. Other services include taxidermy for when you catch the monster fish of the decade!
Come to Lake of the Ozarks for the fantastic Bass and Crappie fishing. Why not employ the services of a local fishing guide—these guys can show you the best places to land the big boys lurking in the lake. If you get real lucky, you might even catch a record breaker! Winter or summer, day or night, fishing in the clear waters of Lake of the Ozarks is always more fun with an experienced and fully licensed fishing guide. Book one now and make the most of your lake time. Be warned: you might end up hooked for life…
Have you got what it takes to land a prize-winning bass on Lake of the Ozarks? If you have, you might be in with a chance of hooking yourself a whopping amount of cash, as well as a record-breaking fish. There are lots of fishing tournaments on Lake of the Ozarks every year and some of them pay out prizes in the region of $50,000! There are also loads of other smaller prizes on offer, too, so maybe it’s time to brush up your fishing skills and dust off that old rod before you book your fishing vacation to the Ozarks.
Types of Fishing in Lake of the Ozarks
- The largemouth bass is widely distributed throughout the Lake of the Ozarks. Anglers consider the largemouth bass to be the top sport fish. You will find an abundance of 5 pound plus largemouth bass, but if you are lucky the Lake of the Ozarks have produced largemouth bass over 12 pounds! The State record is held by Marvin Bushong for a massive 13 lbs 14 oz largemouth bass caught at Bull Shoals Lake on 4/1/1961. All largemouth bass less than fifteen inches in length must be returned to the water immediately. The daily limit is 6 in the aggregate including smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, spotted bass and all black bass hybrids.
- The smallmouth often called "brownie" or "bronzeback" are located at the lower lake and upper reaches of the tributaries or streams. Smallmouth bass are known by anglers for their aggressive fighting. Typical smallmouth bass weighs about a pound. All smallmouth bass less than fifteen inches in length must be returned to the water immediately. The State record is held by Kevin S. Clingan for a massive 7 lbs 2 oz smallmouth bass caught at Stockton Lake on 12/18/1994. The daily limit is 6 in the aggregate including smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, spotted bass and all black bass hybrids.
- The spotted or "Kentucky" bass like the smallmouth bass are located at the lower lake and upper reaches of the tributaries or streams. They are known by anglers for their aggressive fighting. Typical spotted bass are around a pound. All spotted bass less than fifteen inches in length must be returned to the water immediately. The State record is held by Gene Arnaud for a massive 7 lbs 8 oz spotted bass caught at Table Rock Lake on 4/6/1966. The daily limit is 6 in the aggregate including smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, spotted bass and all black bass hybrids.
- The white bass or sand bass are located during the summer months schooled up on the shallow flats. They are a fun battle, but even a better meal! They usually range between 1 and 2 pounds. The State record is held by Scott Flood for a massive 5 lbs 6 oz white bass caught at Table Rock Lake on 3/19/2002. The daily limit is 15 in aggregate including white bass, yellow bass, striped bass and all their hybrids with a limit of no more than 4 bass exceeding 18 inches in length. There is no size limit for white bass below 18 inches in length.
- Bluegills can be found all over the Lake of the Ozarks especially near boat docks, tree trunks, and tree brush. Bluegills are known for their great taste, but because of their smaller size can be a pain to clean. Most bluegills weight 1/2 pound or less, but in the Lake of the Ozarks a 3/4 to 1 pound "gill" is common. The State record is held by Robert Giovanini for a massive 3 lbs 0 oz bluegill caught in a private pond on 6/8/1963. The daily limit for fish other than those species defined as game fish is fifty 50 in the aggregate.
- Black crappies are slightly fussier about their environment and prefer cool, deep waters with abundant aquatic vegetation. Black crappie are early spring spawners, and can be found in wooded cover and main lake pockets with brush. March and April are the best months to catch black crappie. Black crappie are also know for their great taste. During the summer months, the black crappie go into deeper water and scatter, which makes them a lot more difficult to find. The State record is held by Ray Babcock for a massive 4 lbs 8 oz black crappie caught in a private pond on 5/28/1967. All black crappie less than 9 inches in total length must be returned to the water immediately. The daily limit is 15 in the aggregate including black crappie and white crappie.
- Although white and black crappies often occupy the same waters, white crappies can flourish in warmer, siltier waters than black crappies. White crappie are early spring spawners, and can be found in wooded cover and main lake pockets with brush. March and April are the best months to catch white crappie. White crappie are also know for their great taste. During the summer months, the white crappie go into deeper water and scatter, which makes them a lot more difficult to find. The State record is held by Samuel H. Barbee for a massive 4 lbs 9 oz white crappie caught in a private pond on 3/5/2000. All white crappie less than 9 inches in total length must be returned to the water immediately. The daily limit is 15 in the aggregate including black crappie and white crappie.