Outdoor Report

September 27 Outdoor and Fishing Report

provided by Nebraska Game and Parks

Fall fishing is in full swing at Lake McConaughy SRA with anglers finding success across the reservoir for multiple species. Water temperatures range from 65-70 degrees, with water elevation at 3255.5 or 56.8%. Water levels have dropped 6” in the last month, with nearly no change in the last 2 weeks. For more information on water levels, visit https://www.cnppid.com/lake-river-data/.

Walleye anglers are typically fishing in deeper (20-50 feet) of water, using slab spoons, blade baits and vertical jigging around the Mako and Ogallala Beach areas of the south side and from Lemoyne back to Arthur Bay on the north side. There has also been some success on an early morning and late evening bite on the southeast rocky points, casing cranks and spinnerbaits. Smallmouth anglers are still finding good numbers and excellent sizes along the southeast rocky points during the mid-morning period, throwing a number of bass rigs, but with particular success with Ned Rigs and spinnerbaits. Catfish are still being caught at a number of areas, but most anglers have been targeting the west end of the reservoir.

Bank anglers have had good luck in the Spillway and Diver’s Bay areas, casting a number of jigs and baits from shore for walleye, catfish and smallmouth bass. With lower water levels, most of the areas will involve a decent walk.

Current boat ramps available on Lake McConaughy are at Martin Bay Lakeside, Diver’s Bay and Lemoyne Lakeside.

The Martin Bay Bayside Boat Ramp and Campground remain closed for construction. The northern entrance to Martin Bay will close, around early November, for a large improvement project of the Martin Bay entrance and kiosks, but access will remain at the entrance to the southeast portion of Martin Bay, including the low water boat ramp until December. Access to the Cedar View Bayside Boat Ramp is closed this week for pavement maintenance of the parking lot, including a fog seal and lot striping and will temporarily close for the off-season, beginning in November, to allow for the construction of major improvements to the boat ramp.

The boat docks will be removed at Lake Ogallala on or around September 29th, as lake levels will be lowered around 6’ for NPPD to install a coffer dam to conduct maintenance on the Keystone Diversion Dam.

Campground amenities at Little Thunder and Lone Eagle and, including water and shower facilities and RV Dump Stations, will remain open through mid to late October, weather dependent. Lake Ogallala East water and shower facilities and Cedar View Campground shower facility will remain open until mid to late November, to allow for late fall camping and deer hunters. Electrical pedestals remain on and available all winter at any campgrounds that have them. Water is available all winter at Lake Ogallala West (by the playground), Arthur Bay RV Dump Station, Sandy Beach Campground and Cedar View Campground and RV Dump Station.

Boaters are reminded that Martin Bay is now entirely no-wake and is marked with buoys throughout the bay. Lower water levels expose several hazards throughout the bay, including sand bars. Most watercraft will struggle to go in and out of the mouth of Martin Bay, and should launch at the low water ramp in that area to access the open lake.
Experience is recommended for beach launching; there is also a list of businesses that provide launching service here:
Visitors are reminded to contact Nebraska State Patrol Dispatch at 308-535-8270 for any non-emergency law enforcement issues that arise. Officers will be patrolling areas regularly, but visitors are encouraged to assist their efforts by reporting potential violations to ensure a safe, quality weekend for our guests.
For general park inquires, contact the Park Office at 308-284-8800.
Seasonal Overview :  With over 55 square miles of water and over 70 miles of shoreline, Lake McConaughy is Nebraska’s largest reservoir and a popular year-round fishing and outdoor recreation destination.

Fall:  From Labor Day weekend through Thanksgiving, anglers slab for walleye and white bass on Lake McConaughy.   Catfish can be caught year-round, especially at the west end of the lake.

Winter:   Before the bays are iced in, success can still be found slabbing for walleye by Martin Bay or near Lemoyne.  Catfish can be caught year-round, especially at the west end of the lake. Trout can be caught from open water on Lake Ogallala all winter.  Anglers generally have success with fly-fishing small nymph patterns, as well as nightcrawlers and eggs on spinning tackle.

Spring: The walleye spawn at Lake McConaughy begins around the middle of April, and continues through the first part of May. From the middle of May to the Fourth of July, anglers target walleye and wipers using live bait or casting jigs to the shoreline.

Summer: Success with white bass, and small and large mouth bass can generally be found from May through the end of August casting jigs or lures to rocky points.  Walleye and wipers are targeted through August trolling lures and spinner baits.  Walleye and wipers are usually found off the face of Kingsley Dam or in bays off rocky points, although walleye are caught throughout the lake.  Yellow perch can be caught all summer throughout the lake.  Northern pike may sometimes be found at the west end of the lake casting lures and spinner baits. Rainbow trout, brown trout, and tiger trout can be caught in Lake Ogallala all summer, as well as in the river and supply canal. Anglers find success casting off boats or the shore as well as trolling.



Calendar of Events

8:00 am Ogallala Farmer’s Market
Ogallala Farmer’s Market
Oct 2 @ 8:00 am – 12:00 pm
The Ogallala Farmer’s Market will be held Saturdays at Rendezvous Square from June 19 through October 2, 2021.  Find something different every week – including locally raised vegetables, fruits, baked goods, honey, preserves and crafts.
all-day Halloween at the Hollow
Halloween at the Hollow
Oct 23 all-day
The Friends of Ash Hollow will host Halloween in the Hollow, a family Halloween event, Saturday, Oct. 23, 2021 at Ash Hollow State Historical Park near Lewellen from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m..  Learn more[...]
10:00 am Kayak Big Mac 2021
Kayak Big Mac 2021
Nov 6 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Kayak Big Mac 2021
“Summer is for Sissies!” Kayak Big Mac- Martin Bay, Lake McConaughy- 10 AM MST (Alternate location- Lake Ogallala) Join the Ogallala Rotary Club for their annual Kayak Big Mac fundraiser for local and international water[...]
all-day Ogallala Craft Fair
Ogallala Craft Fair
Nov 20 all-day
Contact: Keith County Chamber of Commerce (308) 284-4066