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1770 Highway 64 • Lebanon, Missouri 65536 • 417-532-3724
On Missouri's Beautiful Niangua River

Niangua River Fishing at Bennett Spring Trout Park

Year-round 55 degrees F. water from Bennett Spring provides habitat for trout in 1.5 miles of Bennett Spring Branch and in approximately 12 miles of the NR downstream of Bennett Spring Branch. Flow from Bennett Spring averages approximately 100 million gallons per day, and the branch doubles the flow of the NR. The spring and the branch below it are owned by the MDNR and managed as a state park.

The MDC owns and operates a trout hatchery within the park, and rainbow and brown trout are stocked annually in the park and the NR (see the Introduced and Exotic Species section). From March through October, the trout park is open daily and the trout fishery is managed on a put-and-take basis. There is no length limit on rainbow trout, 15" length limit on brown trout and the daily limit is four. The spring branch is separated into three zones, each with different lure restrictions (flies, artificials without soft plastic or synthetic substances, and bait or soft plastic/synthetic substance lures).

Winter Catch-and-Release Season is the 2nd Friday in Nov. through the 2nd Monday in February (Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday only) 8 am to 4 pm. The MDNR reported that in 1997 approximately 188,000 trout tags were sold including 2,200 during the fall/winter season.

Trout Fishing Regulations

Zone 1
From the hatchery dam upstream to the end of the area. Only flies are permitted.

Zone 2
From the hatchery dam to the whistle bridge. Only flies and artificial lures are permitted.

Zone 3
From the whistle bridge to the Niangua River. Only soft plastic bait (unscented), natural and scented bait are permitted. All flies and artificial lures are prohibited, even if natural bait or scent has been added.

Zone areas are marked in the park and maps are also available.

Trout Fishing Hours

Beginning Time
Ending Time
March 6:30 a.m.*/7:30a.m.** 6 p.m.*/7 p.m.**
April 7 a.m. 7:30 p.m.
May 6:30 a.m. 8:15 p.m.
June and July 6:30 a.m. 8:30 p.m.
August 7 a.m. 8 p.m.
September 7:30 a.m. 7:15 p.m.
October 7:30 a.m. 6:30 p.m.

* Central Standard Time    ** Central Daylight Time

Catch-and-Release Season

Beginning Time
Ending Time
2nd Friday in Nov. through the 2nd Monday in February
  (Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday only)
8 a.m.
4 p.m.

For additional information, please call (417) 532-4418 or (417) 532-7612.


  • Trout fishing is permitted in accordance with the state wildlife code and posted restrictions daily from March 1 through Oct. 31, and during the winter catch-and-release season from the second Friday in November to the second Monday in February on Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday only.
  • Each angler shall display a daily trout tag purchased on the area and bearing his or her signature.
  • Each angler shall have a state fishing permit except those 15 years and younger or Missouri residents 65 years and older.
  • Each angler shall keep their trout separate at all times and identified with their name and address.
  • Daily limit is four, only one of which may be a brown trout must be equal to or greater than 15". No length limit on rainbow trout. Possession limit is eight trout.
  • Only a single pole or rod may be used. Gigging, snaring or snagging is NOT permitted.
  • No person shall continue to fish for any species in these trout waters after having four trout in possession.
  • The use of game fish or parts thereof for bait is prohibited; chumming is not permitted.
  • No trout may be possessed in the catch-and-release area.

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Kayak Base Camp / Menagerie Campground
1770 Highway 64 • Lebanon, Missouri 65536 • 417-532-3724