If there's one thing I love doing, it's fishing in Texas.
Fishing is one of the few outdoor activities where you can just sit back and relax. It takes very little exertion just to let the fish come to you. Most of the work is just in preparation.
Considering we live in the age of technology, you can even play games on your phone while you wait for fish to bite. As much as I enjoy outdoor activities that require a lot of activity, it really does feel good just to relax every once in a while.
Considering how much I enjoy it, as well as the fact that I'm a native Texan, I've taken it upon myself recently to research the top fishing spots in my home state. I'll be drawing on my own experience with these areas as well as my research. In no particular order, here are my top five fishing spots in Texas.
1. Choke Canyon Reservoir
Considering this fishing location is the one I most regularly visit, I felt it was probably the first one to mention. Located about an hour south of San Antonio, Choke is a very beautiful and wild lake. It hosts a diverse collection of wildlife. On land, this includes gators, hogs, and turkeys. This extends to the lake, itself, where you can catch all three types of catfish (blues, channels, and flatheads) as well as bass and crappies.
Fishing tournaments are also regularly hosted here.
2. Fork Lake
It has been said that this is simply the best lake in Texas for big bass. Located a couple of hours east of Dallas, this lake routinely produces state record setting fish. The main reason for this because the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department did a great job managing the land before the reservoir was ever inundated.
Before the dam was closed, Florida bass were introduced to small ponds and lakes throughout the area. The whole area was then covered in water as soon as the dam was closed, creating one of the best places to catch bass in the whole state. If you decide to fish here, you most certainly won't be alone. Due to its proximity to Dallas, the lake attracts a lot of traffic.
3. Victor Braunig Lake
This lake is the closest one to my neck of the woods, only 17 miles south of downtown San Antonio. It's also one of the few non-coastal places where you can catch red fish. You heard me. Those red fish you see everyone showing off pictures of whenever they go fishing at the beach can be found right here without taking the trip to the coast.
The presence of the local power plant, as well as a good mineral base, gives this lake a diverse selection of fish to catch. It even has hybrid stripers and a good channel catfish population. It's definitely worth the visit if you're in southern Texas.
4. Guadalupe River
This river is the place to go if you're looking for rainbow trout. Although rainbow trout aren't native to these waters, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department routinely introduces them to the water each winter with the intent that they will be caught by anglers. Most of these fish won't survive the rising temperature once spring passes so its worth it to get out there and catch them.
The best place on the river to go trout fishing is the Canyon Tailrace that's located a few miles below Canyon Lake. This is also one of the most beautiful parts of the Texas Hill Country with forested hills and valleys. It's only a short drive from Austin and well worth the trip.
5. San Antonio Bay
Just to be clear, the San Antonio Bay is very different from San Antonio, the city. San Antonio Bay is located between the Matagorda and Aransas Bays. It's about 55 miles northeast of Corpus Christi. This is one of the best places to go if you're looking for spotted sea trout. It's also a good spot for other sea-based fish including ladyfish, flounder, pinfish, and southern kingfish.
The wildlife preserve nearby also just makes it a good place to find exotic beach wildlife in general. As you fish, you can do so on a coast populated by cranes, herons, and pelicans. Also, the area has a good selection of clams and oysters if you want some shellfish to go with your meal.
If you're ever looking for a good place to fish in the Lone Star State, feel free to stop by any one of these perfect honey holes. Trust me, you won't be disappointed.