Driving directions: Located five miles north of Macon on Highway 63, then two miles west on Route AX. Long Branch Lake, located in Macon County, is a 2,400 acre Corps of Engineers flood control reservoir.
Annual Prospects Report
Largemouth bass numbers continue to be low at Long Branch Lake, but those that are caught by anglers are generally 15 inches or longer. Hybrid striped bass fishing will be good in 2023 for anglers that concentrate on fishing main lake points, keeping a watch out for schooling hybrids breaking the surface feeding upon gizzard shad. Channel catfish in the 2-3-pound range will provide good action for bank anglers and those fishing the flooded timber in the Long Branch and East Fork of Little Chariton River arms. Large blue catfish are not uncommon; jugs fished with shad are most effective in spring and early fall. Flathead catfish are more difficult to catch but are available to those willing to use live bait in the upper arms of the lake near old river channels.
White and black crappie grow slowly at Long Branch Lake, and historically a very small percentage reach 9 inches in length, a size desirable to anglers. In recent years, the size structure of the white crappie population appears to be gradually improving. The results of a fall 2022 survey indicated the abundance of desirable size white crappie was fair, with nearly 20 percent of those captured measuring 9 inches or longer. Abundant, small common carp can provide fast action for pole and line angling and bowfishing. Locations of fish attractors can be found at https://short.mdc.mo.gov/ZpN. A barrier free fishing dock near the marina enhances the fishing opportunities at Long Branch Lake.
From Macon, take Highway 36 west two and seven-tenths miles to the Long Branch Lake Road exit. Turn north on Long Branch Lake Road and immediately turn west on Visitor Center Road and follow for three miles to the marina and boat ramp.