Explore the Lake Area
Calendar of EventsUpcoming Events
December 17, 2015
A strong winter weather system swept through the park this week leaving several inches of snow on the ground.
Park water systems have been winterized for the season including dump stations, showers and fish cleaning stations. Systems will return to service beginning in early May. There is fresh potable water available all winter at Lake Ogallala west by the south boat ramp and by the playground, Sandy Beach and Cedar Vue dump station. The electricity remains on and available at our non-peak rates at the modern campgrounds. Non-peak camping rates are posted throughout the park at self-pay stations. A Park Entry Permit is required year round at all park areas.
The Lake McConaughy Water Center “Balancing Unlimited Needs” display was recently upgraded. This display includes a giant topographical map and theater that focuses on the North Platte River watershed and the various industries that utilize this resource. The upgrade included new control computers, fiber optics and a projector.
The Parks Field Staff recently completed upgrades on tables at Little Thunder Campground and Lone Eagle Campground. Over 300 new boards were installed and all of the tables in these areas were painted. The Field Staff will now turn their focus to annual equipment and facility maintenance as well as boating access repairs.
Lake McConaughy State Recreation Area is now accepting applications for our 2016 Internship Program. The Internship Program is open to current college students or recent graduates pursuing degrees in Park Management, Agriculture, Tourism, Recreation Management or related fields. The program has the ability to cater to an individual’s career goals. For more information, visit Employment Opportunities at ilovelakemac.com.
The surface water temperature at the dam is 39° F. The lake elevation is 3255.6 or 84.4% of full pool capacity. Inflow into Lake McConaughy is 1,193 cfs with outflow of 1,330 cfs. The lake elevation has declined 0.4 feet in the last month.
Daytime angler success for walleye has decreased as the winter has progressed. Anglers have seen success vertical jigging and slabbing in 40-60 feet along the face of Kingsley Dam. The statewide daily bag limit for walleye is 4 fish with minimum size limit of 15 inches and no more than one fish over 22 inches.
Bank and boat anglers have been having moderate success on channel catfish at the unfrozen western end of Lake McConaughy. Anglers are having the best success using shad entrails, cut-bait or frozen shrimp.
All of the docks at ramps around Lake McConaughy have been removed for the season.
Surface water temperature is 38° F. Rainbow trout fishing success has been fair for bank anglers using worms, salmon eggs, dough baits or casting spinners, spoons or jigs. Most fish caught range in size from 10-14 inches with an occasional larger fish up to 16 inches. Boat anglers are trolling or casting spinners or spoons. Fly fishermen have been using bead head nymph patterns or streamers. Anglers are reminded the daily bag limit in Lake Ogallala is 5 trout with no more than one over 16 inches.
Waterfowl seasons are in full swing at both Lake McConaughy and Lake Ogallala with some success. Currently, there are lower than normal numbers of both Mallard ducks and Canada geese and that has led to lower harvest numbers. We expect with the changing weather patterns that new birds will be arriving in the area any day now and as the local waters continue to freeze, more waterfowl will pattern into Lake McConaughy.
The Lake McConaughy Visitors and Water Interpretive Center is open Monday through Saturday 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
For the latest information, like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/LakeMcConaughyNE.
Don’t forget to take advantage of the tremendous amount of information available on the Game & Parks website at www.OutdoorNebraska.gov.
For online Outdoor Reports from all over the state, visit www.outdoornebraska.gov/outdoorreports.
Lake McConaughy State Recreation Area
1475 HW 61 N
Ogallala, NE 69153