Fishing is an integral part of most Texans’ lives, and now that summer is in full swing, it’s the perfect time to head out on the water and try to catch yourself a nice supper. Texas has countless places for excellent fishing, but here’s ten of what many consider the top fishing spots in the state of Texas.
1) Rollover Pass
People come from all over the U.S., and maybe even the world, to fish at this renowned spot on the Bolivar Peninsula. Tons of fish swim through this man-made strait that connects the Gulf of Mexico with East Bay, which makes for wonderful opportunities to catch a great fish. Once Hwy 87 crosses over the pass, it’s the wide-open Texas Gulf and the beachfront. Easy access for all to enjoy some time fishing, back your car or truck up to the pass, pull out the chairs and umbrella, and enjoy your time with family and friends saltwater fishing. redfish, specs, flounder, croaker, sheephead, and drum are all caught from the pass depending on the time of year. A permit is required for parking which can be purchased from one of the Rollover Pass bait shops or a volunteer will be more than happy to help you purchase one.
2) Lake Livingston
Lake Livingston, located in the piney woods of East Texas, is one of the largest lakes in Texas as well as a notable white bass and catfish fishery. Though less abundant, you might also catch largemouth bass, crappie, striped bass, and bluegill. You’ll also find camping options there, from tent sites with water nearby up to campsites with full hookups. You can also rent one of 10 screened shelters, some of which are ADA accessible.
3) Toledo Bend
Arguably the best place for bass fishing in Texas, the Toledo Bend is fed by the Sabine River and many small creeks on the Texas and Louisiana side of the lake. Toledo Bend Reservoir is a reservoir on the Sabine River between Texas and Louisiana. The lake has an area of 185,000 acres, the largest man-made body of water in Texas, the largest in the South, and the fifth largest in the United States.
4) Lake Sam Rayburn
Another great place for white bass and catfish fishing, as well as crappie and largemouth bass. This has been a top fishing spot for Texans for years, and for good reason. It’s fed by the Angelina River, as well as a number of creeks and bayous, making it a fisherman’s paradise. The most popular game fish at Sam Rayburn Reservoir is the largemouth bass; an excellent year-round fishery exists. Excellent year-round crappie and catfish fisheries are also present. White bass numbers are limited but provide good fishing opportunities during the spring. Bluegill and redear sunfish are present in high numbers and provide good fishing, especially for youth or inexperienced anglers.
5) Caddo Lake
Located on Big Cypress Bayou northeast of Marshall (about 3 hours east of Dallas), you will find a variety of fish here, including largemouth bass, crappie, chain pickerel, white and yellow bass, sunfish, and catfish. At Caddo Lake State Park, you can fish, paddle, hike, picnic, camp, or stay in a cabin, look for a geocache, and go boating.
6) Choke Canyon Reservoir
Located on the Frio River about an hour and a half south of San Antonio, this is a very popular spot for fishing. Largemouth and white bass, bluegill and redear sunfish, blue, channel and flathead catfish, alligator gar, and crappie occupy the lake. White bass provide excellent angling opportunities in the main Frio River channel during the cooler months and along the northern shoreline during summer. Although crappie fishing has recently been poor, respectable catches are not uncommon.
7) Port Mansfield in Laguna Madre
This a great spot for speckled trout fishing; some anglers catch fish there ranging from 7 – 10 pounds. The lagoon’s ecosystem is protected by the Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge and the Padre Island National Seashore, as well as the privately owned King Ranch. The human history predates the formation of the Laguna Madre, and settlements have been established at Port Isabel and Port Mansfield on the lagoon’s shores.
8) Devil’s River
Though a bit challenging to navigate, this is a wonderful place to go kayak fishing. In this spot about three hours east of San Antonio, you will find healthy populations of largemouth and smallmouth bass, as well as catfish. Be prepared to pack in all supplies and water and pack out all trash.
9) Lake Texoma
Right on the Texas/Oklahoma border, his 89,000-acre reservoir is well-known for its abundance of blue and channel catfish, as well as a variety of bass. Naturally occurring mineral salts in the soil surrounding and under Lake Texoma provide just the right conditions for striped bass to spawn and grow naturally to 15 – 20 pounds at maturity, and that’s why Lake Texoma is known as the Striper Capital of The World. Literally hundreds of striper fishing guides offer all-inclusive services providing tackle, bait, and cleaning, which makes for a great day on the lake any time of year. All you need to bring is your Lake Texoma fishing license (available at local convenience stores) so that you’re legal in both Oklahoma and Texas waters.
10) Lake Tawakoni
Located 28 miles southeast of Dallas, this is a premier fishing destination for blue, channel, and flathead catfish, as well as striped, white, and largemouth bass. There’s a four-lane boat ramp and fish cleaning station. You can even borrow fishing gear at headquarters to use in the park. The Lake Tawakoni Trading Post sells souvenirs, ice, firewood, cold drinks and snacks, as well as fishing bait and tackle.