Neosho State Fishing Lake

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Since completion in 1927, this 92-acre impoundment has been managed primarily for the recreational angler. The lake has been well developed over the years and has become an attraction for the vacationing or weekend camper/angler. Camp sites are primitive with no charge to camp. Water is available at the south restroom. The lake is well noted for its panfish and channel catfish fisheries, and receives heavy fishing pressure for a lake its size.

Recreational activities at Neosho State Lake have evolved primarily around fishing, camping and wildlife observations. The lake has three sites designated for primitive camping, 18 fishing piers, one cement ramp, three walking trails, two vault toilets, and one shelter house. 

Reservations must be made for overnight camping at the shelter house. A flat rate required fee of $26 is required for reservations and reservations can be made by calling 620-449-2539. If you are wanting to reserve the shelter house you are encouraged to make your reservations at least two weeks prior to when you are wanting to make your reservation.

Manager: Monte Manbeck
Phone: (620)-449-2539

From Parsons travel north on Highway 59 to 40th rd. Turn east and travel 4 miles.

County/Counties:
Lake News - Updated: 06/24/2019

Lake News

Partial Lake Renovation For Neosho State Fishing Lake

EMPORIA – In a cooperative study with Kansas State University to evaluate the influence of gizzard shad on food webs in small impoundments, the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism (KDWPT) will be conducting partial fishery renovations on four small impoundments this winter. Selected impoundments are Neosho State Fishing Lake, Pottawatomie State Fishing Lake No. 1, Shawnee State Fishing Lake, and Washington State Fishing Lake.

In a partial renovation, the fish population is not completely eliminated as it is during a full renovation. The first step in a partial renovation is lowering water levels, which will occur in late October when levels in these four impoundments will be lowered approximately 3 feet below normal lake elevation. When weather conditions permit in November or December, a fish toxicant called Rotenone will be applied at a concentration of 7.5 parts per billion, which is much less than the 40 parts per billion allowed in municipal water supplies. The low-dose of Rotenone is designed to target gizzard shad while not affecting sport fish. No salvage order will be issued, and sport fishing equipment and harvest regulations will remain in effect. However, anglers will be permitted to collect deceased gizzard shad from the shoreline following treatments for personal use only.

Gizzard shad present a challenge to managing small impoundments, which are designed to provide close-to-home fishing opportunities. While many anglers may recognize gizzard shad as a food source for sport fish, this mostly applies to large reservoirs where open-water fish such as walleye and wipers prey on shad. In smaller impoundments, open-water predators are rare or non-existent and gizzard shad populations can expand to levels that cause problems for more desirable sport fish. One example is direct competition for food resources between gizzard shad and young bluegill, which typically favors gizzard shad and causes a reduction in bluegill numbers. These changes can cause a chain reaction in the food web because bluegill are a preferred prey of sport fish like largemouth bass and white crappie. The result is an unsustainable sport fishery.

When gizzard shad populations exceed acceptable levels, a complete lake renovation is often prescribed to reset the fish community and rebuild a sustainable balance. A complete renovation entails draining the reservoir as much as possible, then treating the remaining water with Rotenone at levels of  2,000-3,000 parts per billion to remove all fish. A major downside of renovation is the amount of time needed for newly-stocked fish to grow to sizes sought by anglers. The partial renovation to remove gizzard shad is a new strategy that shows promise. Other fish species are more tolerant of the chemical, although unintended mortality may occur in a small portion of the population. Reservoirs will be restocked following treatment if larger than expected loss occurs.

Rotenone is a plant-based compound used primarily as an insecticide or piscicide. It is toxic to fish and other gill-breathing animals, but does not harm humans, birds, or other air-breathing animals. Similarly, animals that consume fish exposed to Rotenone will not be affected. Rotenone breaks down rapidly in sunlight and will be undetectable a couple weeks after application.

Each of these reservoirs will be closed to boat traffic on the day of Rotenone application and marked with barricades across boat ramps. Anglers are advised to contact local fisheries biologists for status of the renovations before making any trips this winter.

For more information on the partial renovation projects, contact fisheries biologist Ben Neely at (620) 342-0658 or ben.neely@ks.gov.

For other information concerning Neosho State Fishing Lake contact Neosho Wildlife Area Field office at (620) 449-2539.

General Information
Phone:
County/Counties:

Manager: Monte Manbeck
Phone: (620)-449-2539

From Parsons travel north on Highway 59 to 40th rd. Turn east and travel 4 miles.


Special Regulations

An 18-inch  minimum length limit on largemouth bass with a creel limit of five was implemented to insure quality size fish are present to improve angling success and increase predation on numerous crappie and bluegill.

A 15"  minimum length limit and a five fish creel limit have also been implemented for channel catfish. These limits help to create a higher quality fishing experience and allow a greater opportunity for all anglers.

Here is a complete list of Public Land Regulations or you can download the regulation summary.

History

Neosho State Fishing Lake was the first state lake constructed with monies of the Kansas Forestry, Fish and Game Commission, now known as the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism.

Neosho Facilities
Fishing Pier
  • Type of Facility: Pier
  • This facility is ADA accessible
  • Location of Facility: N37 25 19.594 W95 11 47.374
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     There are two floating fishing piers with handicap accessible trails, one is located on the east side of the lake near the boat ramp and the other is on the west side at the end of "Mckinnley Lake Road". Anglers are required to pick up their trash when finished!


Toilet
  • Type of Facility: Vault Toilet
  • This facility is ADA accessible
  • Location of Facility: N37 25 26.232 95 W11 50.802
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    Vault toilet


Toilet
  • Type of Facility: Vault Toilet
  • This facility is ADA accessible
  • Location of Facility: N37 25 17.916 W95 11 44.870
  • Click for more information
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    Vault toilet


Boat Ramp
  • Type of Facility: Boat Ramp
  • This facility is ADA accessible
  • Location of Facility: N37 25 20.240 W95 11 48.564
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    Boat Ramp access onto lake. Floating dock next to ramp for handicap access.


Shelterhouse
  • Type of Facility: Shelter
  • This facility is ADA accessible
  • Location of Facility: N37 25 15.931 W95 11 44.312
  • This Facility is Reservable.
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    Shelterhouse available for reservation for group functions and/or camping/picnicking. Reservations are required for overnight camping. A flat rate fee of $26 is required for reservations; if you are wanting to make a reservation you are encouraged to call 620-449-2539 at least two weeks prior to when you are wanting to make the reservation.


Neosho Trails
Nature Trail
  • Trail Season: Year-around
  • Length of Trail: 1 mile(s)
  • Trail Activities: Walking, Mt. Biking
  • There is camping located near the trail
  • Location of Start: N37 25 9.213 W95 11 46.304
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    Enjoy a walk on the trail to observe native plants, wildlife, and the geology of the spillway.