Texas is known for its abundance of bass fishing opportunities, with some of the top bass lakes in the US located within the state. The largemouth bass in Texas is particularly notable for their size, with 10-pound fish being commonplace. It’s worth mentioning that Texas also has lakes with excellent smallmouth and spotted bass fishing.
Additionally, some lakes in central Texas are home to the Guadalupe bass, a unique species of black bass that can only be found in that area. No doubt, Texas is known for producing trophy largemouth black bass and is a top state for freshwater game fishing. While many lakes in Texas have the potential to produce trophy bass, a select few stand out. For those on a quest for large bass, we have written the best bass fishing lakes these lakes in Texas.
Top 10 Best Bass Fishing Lakes In Texas (2023)
1. Choke Canyon
Choke Canyon Lake is a man-made reservoir created by damming the Frio River, which covers 26,000 acres. The lake has a variety of creek beds, timber, and structures that make it an ideal habitat for black bass. Due to South Texas’s mild climate, Choke Canyon is known for producing high-quality bass. Although the lake is somewhat remote, those who make the effort to fish there are often rewarded with large catches.
2. Lake Fork
Lake Fork, renowned as a premier destination for trophy bass fishing, attracts anglers from around the country and beyond. These fishermen know that they have a strong likelihood of catching a large, prized largemouth while fishing on Fork. With more than half of the top 50 basses caught in Texas having been caught in Lake Fork, it is a must-visit spot for dedicated bass fishing enthusiasts.
3. Lake Sam Rayburn
Lake Sam Rayburn, also known as “Big Sam,” is the largest lake located entirely in Texas. It has a reputation for producing large bass and is a popular destination for professional and amateur fishermen alike. Whether you’re a pro, a serious angler, or just looking for a weekend fishing trip, a visit to Lake Sam Rayburn may result in catching the fish of a lifetime.
4. Lake Amistad
Lake Amistad, located near Del Rio, was created by damming the Rio Grande in 1969. Its remote location and clear, expansive waters make it a charming destination. Spanning nearly 70,000 acres, the lake is shared between Mexico and the United States and is renowned for its beauty and trophy bass fishing opportunities.
5. Falcon Lake
Falcon Lake in Zapata, Texas, located on the border of Mexico, is known for its large “braggin’ size” largemouth bass. After a decade-long drought, water levels have recently risen, leading to a resurgence in the big bass population. As a result, Falcon has become one of the most reliable spots for catching quality largemouth bass in America, attracting anglers from all over the country.
6. Lake Conroe
Lake Conroe, a water source for Houston, boasts a maximum depth of 75 feet and is home to various fish species such as largemouth bass, channel catfish, and bluegill. Anglers have reported catching bass weighing over 14 pounds and bluegill measuring up to 12 inches. The best lures to use at Lake Conroe are shad imitation lures or soft plastic baits, and trolling in open water is recommended for the best chance of a catch.
7. Caddo Lake
Caddo Lake, located on the border of Texas and Louisiana, features one of the largest flooded cypress forests in the US and is known for its trophy-size bass (over 8 pounds) as well as crappie, chain pickerel, catfish, and sunfish. Spring, particularly March, is the ideal time to fish for these trophy basses.
8. Lake Texoma
Located on the Texas-Oklahoma border, Lake Texoma boasts a maximum depth of 100 feet. This freshwater lake is known for its striped bass population and offers opportunities for fishing close to the shore and around structures. Anglers may want to try using rigged worms, deep-diving crankbaits, and surface baits during the morning hours. Additionally, Lake Texoma holds the Texas record for Blue Catfish at 121.5 pounds.
9. Toledo Bend Reservoir
The Toledo Bend Reservoir is a large body of water that spans 65 miles along the Texas and Louisiana border. Covering 181,600 acres, it offers ample space for fishing. The lake is highly renowned for its bass fishing and has been named the best bass lake in America by Bassmaster in both 2015 and 2016, and often ranks in the top 10. The lake’s vast size and diverse habitats, primarily formed by the impoundment of the Sabine River and its many smaller tributaries, contribute to its exceptional fishing opportunities.
With its vast size, Toledo Bend’s lake can be daunting to navigate. However, its abundant standing timber, hydrilla beds, and other vegetation provide excellent cover for bass. Additionally, the Texas shoreline is mostly made up of state parks, national forests, and wildlife management areas, offering numerous launch sites and shore access points. A good strategy is to begin by exploring shallow cover and using crankbaits and spinnerbaits during spring and fall to catch bass.
10. Lake Meredith
Lake Meredith, located north of Amarillo, offers exceptional bass fishing in the Texas Panhandle. This 16,400-acre lake is known for its abundance of both largemouth and smallmouth bass, as well as its consistent stocking of walleye. Among the black bass species, smallmouths are the most prevalent in Lake Meredith, thriving in the lake’s rocky habitat. The lake’s steep banks and deep water, ranging from clear at the lower end to highly turbid at the upper end, provide ideal conditions for smallmouth bass, with the state record smallmouth bass of nearly 8 pounds being caught here.
Smallmouth fishing is most successful in areas with rocky drop-offs, reefs, and points. They can also be found near rocky banks when using crawfish imitations. In spring, pay attention to water temperatures as smallmouth fishing improves when the temperature reaches 60 degrees. In the summer, smallmouths can be caught in Lake Meredith, but deeper waters tend to be more productive. Keep in mind that the water level in Lake Meredith can fluctuate greatly, so the best fishing spots may change.
Largemouth bass typically inhabits specific habitats, such as backwater areas with vegetation and timber. These areas provide abundant forage, such as bluegill, gizzard shad, and crawfish. Lake Meredith National Recreation Area surrounds the lake, offering multiple boat launch facilities, shore fishing spots, and campgrounds managed by the National Park Service.
If you’re looking to go bass fishing in Texas, this list of the top 10 best bass fishing lakes is a great starting point. But keep in mind that you’ll still need to know where to go and what to do.