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St. Louis Wedding & Travel Photographer

The Branson Scenic Overlook

We recently enjoyed a brief stay near Table Rock Lake after attending (and photographing) a friend’s wedding at Bear Creek Winery. After a few days of celebration, my husband and I stayed one extra night in Lampe, Missouri to enjoy the Fall foliage and splendid colors of the Missouri Ozarks. Needing to unwind a little, we decided to take a longer version of the Branson Scenic Highway 165 Drive along Table Rock Lake.

Branson Highway 165 Scenic Drive Map

Highways 65, 265, and 165 provide a wonderfully scenic route to view Branson and Table Rock Lake.

Branson Scenic Overlook

A fantastic view awaits visitors at the Branson Scenic Overlook.

Branson Scenic Overlook


Branson, Missouri

Nestled in the Missouri Ozark Mountains, the city of Branson is a popular tourist destination for entertainment, dining, and sight-seeing. Officially incorporated in 1912, Branson exploded into a robust midwestern entertainment district in the 1960s-1990s. Theaters built for legendary acts like Andy Williams, Boxcar Willie, the Baldknobbers, and Shoji Tabuchi attract millions of visitors annually. Branson continues to grow with the expansion of the Branson Landing shopping and entertainment district along Lake Taneycomo.

If you find yourself near Branson with some time to spare, we recommend embarking on the scenic Highway 165 Drive. This scenic route ranges from 10 to 23 miles in distance. A shorter, inner loop will bring visitors along the path to the Branson Overlook. Sight-seers can continue their journey along the outer loop that will provide ample views of Table Rock Lake and the Shepherd of the Hills trout hatchery.

Branson Scenic Overlook Vertical Image

The Branson Overlook offers a grand view of a river that feeds into Table Rock Lake.

Table Rock Lake Dam & Shepherd of the Hills Hatchery

Located near the base of Table Rock Lake Dam is the largest of all the trout-rearing hatcheries operated by the Missouri Department of Conservation. Shepherd of the Hills Fish Hatchery produces approximately 400,000 pounds of fish every year. Eighty percent of the fish reared here are released into the nearby Lake Taneycomo, with the remainder dispersed among other trout management areas in the region.

Table Rock Lake Dam Location

Table Rock Lake Dam. GPS Coordinates: 36°35’43.9″N 93°18’39.8″W

Table Rock Lake Dam

Table Rock Lake Dam. Built and operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the dam was completed in 1958.

A view of the Shepherd of the Hills Fish Hatchery.

A view of the Shepherd of the Hills Fish Hatchery. The largest trout-rearing hatchery operated by the Missouri Department of Conservation produces 400,000 pounds of fish annually.

Scenic drive with colorful trees.

A beautifully-colored road to the base of the dam.

A beautiful path leads us towards a popular fishing area.

Fisherman wade in the waters below the dam to catch trout.Fisherman wade in the waters below the dam to catch trout.

Fisherman wade in the waters below the dam to fish for trout.

Moonshine Beach Peninsula Lookout

Moonshine Beach is a recreational area located near the Table Rock Lake Dam. We visited the rockier peninsula lookout, as the sandy beach area is currently closed due to the pandemic.

A paved path allows for greater accessibility to the rocky waterfront near Moonshine Beach.

A paved path allows for greater accessibility to the rocky waterfront near Moonshine Beach.

Looking out over Table Rock Lake.

Looking out over Table Rock Lake.

Table Rock Lake Artificially made, Table Rock Lake is known for its pristine water conditions. 

Artificially made, Table Rock Lake is known for its pristine water conditions.

A view of the Table Rock Lake Dam in the distance.

A view of the Table Rock Lake Dam in the distance.

An autumnal tree at Table Rock Lake. Fall leaves along a creekbed. Lush greenery along the hatchery.


The Missouri Ozark region is exceptionally beautiful in Autumn. If you find yourself with a little extra time, we highly recommend exploring the overlook drive to see more of Branson’s natural beauty.

Technical Info: Fujifilm X100V

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