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Lake Information for Lake McConaughy


The lake is a man-made body of water that is 22 miles long, 4 miles wide at its largest point, and 142 feet deep near the dam (at full capacity) – it was constructed between 1936 and 1941 and is fed by the North Platte River. When full, the reservoir is 35,700 acres and has 105 miles of sandy shoreline making it the largest reservoir in Nebraska. It has the nickname "Big Mac".

The initial purpose of Lake McConaughy was to serve as an irrigation reservoir for southwest Nebraska and to fuel a hydroelectricity plant in conjunction with its counterpart: Kingsley Dam.

Lake McConaughy is surrounded by several small communities – Ogallala, Lewellen, Keystone, Arthur, Oshkosh, and Lemoyne. Denver is the closest metropolitan city and is located 200 miles away.

For many years Lake McConaughy has been a popular place for fishing, boating, water sports, camping and hunting in the area.

Facilities and Parks: 

There is a fish cleaning station in Martin Bay.

Fishing Description: 

Lake McConaughy is a common location for fishing tournaments and has yielded some record breaking fish for angling enthusiasts. During early spring when there is ice on the west end of the lake it provides channel catfishing. In late April-early May, walleye fishing along the dam is favorable – in June and July walleye fishermen have better luck fishing in the bays. Other common fish in Lake McConaughy and Lake Ogallala include: rainbow trout, white bass, striped bass, wipers, and large- and small-mouth bass. The current Nebraska state record for walleye was caught in Lake McConaughy and weighed 16 lb 2 oz (7.3 kg).

The Nebraska Game and Parks commission keeps a watchful eye on fish populations in Lake McConaughy. Feeding experiments and stomach content analysis tests are done on a regular basis to see what the fish are eating and what fish are eating them.

Channel Catfish
Largemouth Bass
Rainbow Trout
Smallmouth Bass
Striped Bass
White Bass
Catfish Family
Optional Information
Maximum depth: 
Surface area: 
Lake McConaughy
Lake type: 

Businesses Located Nearby

Boat Rental

    Quad R Unlimited
  • - Lemoyne, NE
  • (308) 355-8478
    Eichner's Sales & Service
  • 1210 Ogallala Beach Rd - Ogallala, NE
  • (308) 284-4852
    Ski Patrol
  • Ne-61 & Ne-92 - Lemoyne, NE
  • (308) 726-7368

Vacation Rental

    Sportsmen's Complex Incorporated
  • 101 W Highway 92 - Keystone, NE
  • (308) 726-2521

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