Having lived in Texas all my life and kayak fished all over this great state the last 11 years, it’s time that I let you in on my favorite hot spots. These lakes may or may not be places you are familiar with but you will definitely want to add them to your list. If you are searching for black bass out of the kayak, try these lakes.
A winding lake made from the Leon River, Belton is my home lake. The thing I love about it is the diversity of species and water type. Far north on the lake the water is muddy with boulders and timber in moderate to shallow depth. The southern part of the lake is clear, deep and full of smallmouth.
Also known as Decker, this lake is lined with bulrushes and can be great at times of the year. It is full of three to four pound fish and for those who are after numbers. It’s a power plant lake as well so warm water is available pretty much year round. The biggest knock on this lake is the entry fee. If you go on Friday, Saturday or Sunday, it’s $10.
Fish are hungry all year and numbers of catches can reach the triple digits during certain times of the year. The hardest part of fishing Bastrop is its openness and limited launches. If the wind is blowing, a pedal kayak is your friend.
I have a love hate relationship with this lake. I love to fish it. I hate to deal with the ski boats that throw waves and blast music. If you ever want to see if you’ll get sea sick in a kayak, take a summertime paddle on Austin. The fish here are huge but staying on a spot can be difficult. Keep your head on a swivel.
Often overlooked, this gem located just 15 minutes from Fork is setup wonderfully for kayak fishing. The small parks scattered along the lake make for great launch points. The many coves also make it easy to get out of the wind. Some of my favorite days have been on Winnsboro.
The one time bass mecca of Texas, Fork is home to some giant bass. Knowing that, you’ll understand that you are rarely alone in a spot on this lake. Bass boats fly by and the water is full of timber so keep your head on a swivel. The wind can howl here as well so finding a cove to hide in may be necessary.
4. Purtis Creek
The first kayak tournament I ever fished was on Purtis Creek. This is an electric motor only lake, full of trees and perfect for kayaking. A paddler can cover the entire lake fishing in a day if desired and almost everyone can catch fish. The secret jewel is night fishing under the lights.
3. OH Ivie
Out in West Texas where the Concho and Colorado Rivers collide is a fading lake of monster bass. Unfortunately drought has lowered the lake level drastically in the last few years. The lake is up some from a recent flood but it still problematic on ramps. Take a cart for your kayak and spool up some heavy braided line. The fish are hungry and on the chomp.
Near La Grange, this power plant lake offers four to six pound bass pretty readily. Fish the bulrushes in the morning and move out deeper as the sun gets up. The largest fish I’ve hooked and fought but not landed was at Fayette. I still have nightmares of that beast jumping three times and spitting my hook. I know where she lives and I will get her.
1. Lady Bird
With Barton Spring helping the water temps regulate year round, Lady Bird is my favorite place to kayak fish. The only power boats allowed are the rowing coaches’ boats (which is still weird). Rowers can be oblivious so go early and late. Night fishing is a blast and bass fishing is good year round.
Feel like I missed one? Tell me about it in the comments!