Best Bass Fishing Waters in USA


1 DIAMOND VALLEY LAKE Southern California, 4,500 acres

Add Diamond Valley to the list of California waters vying for the next world-record bass. It’s been open to fishing for only two years and is already producing 10- to 12-pounders and a typical weight of 3 1/2 pounds per bass. Contact: J&T Tackle Guide Service (805-630-4711; bass-fishing-guide. com).

2 CLEAR LAKE Northern California, 44,000 acres.

After a bad winter that froze baitfish and a later hydrilla issue, Clear Lake hit the skids through the 1990s. But the natural lake is back on the increase, producing quality bass and 50-fish days. Contact: Clear Lake Guide Service (707-349-1427;

3 ALAN HENRY RESERVOIR Southern Panhandle, Texas, 2,880 acres.

Alan Henry was constructed and stocked with Florida-strain largemouths nine years back. In 2005 it produced more 13-plus-pound bass than prominent Lake Fork. This young lake’s largemouth record is 14.6 pounds. Contact: Hook ‘Em Guide Service (806-470-7958;


Years of drought brought this Rio Grande impoundment some 40 feet listed below regular swimming pool, however considering that water levels began to recover two years earlier, the fishing has actually been unbelievable. At a January 2006 competition, the winning five-fish limitation went 39.66 pounds. Contact: Angler’s Lodge (830-775-1586).

5 INTERNATIONAL FALCON TANK South Texas, 60,390 acres.

Another Rio Grande impoundment back from dry spell, Falcon resembles a lake reborn. Its exposed coastline had grown in with brush; now, the flooded wood offers terrific cover to more than 35 feet deep. A 2005 tourney produced a bag of 6 fish weighing 36.7 pounds. Contact: Deborah’s Guide Service (210-241-1959;

6 ROOSEVELT LAKE Central Arizona, 13,000 acres.

This Salt River impoundment now floods acres of new plants after years of drought and an elevation of its dam. Fisheries biologists anticipate 7- and 8-pound bass this spring. Contact: Art Chamberlin C&C Guide Service (928-479-3208;

7 LAKE POWELL Southeastern Utah and north-central Arizona, 120,000 acres.

This Colorado River impoundment is yet another fishery recuperating from dry spell. Increasing waters are integrating with mistakenly introduced gizzard shad to produce arm-wearying action for larger bass, including hordes of 2- to 3-pound smallies. Contact: Bubba’s Lake Powell Fishing Guide Service (928-645-3506;

8 BROWNLEE RESERVOIR West-central Idaho, 15,000 acres.

A recognized fishery still on its method up, Brownlee has produced amazing varieties of quality smallmouths over the last few years. An area biologist says that for catch rates and average size, Brownlee is 2nd to none in the Pacific Northwest. Contact: Brownlee Tank Charters (208-866-2868;

9 HORSETOOTH RESERVOIR North-central Colorado, 1,800 acres.

Drawn down 5 years ago for dam repair and filled up in 2004, Horsetooth holds smallies that are making the most of new cover and nutrients. There’s terrific action, with some bronzebacks topping 20 inches. Contact: Lory State Park (970-493-1623 or 800-678-2267 for camping bookings).

10 LAKE MEAD Southeastern Nevada, 150,000 acres.

Smallmouth bass have actually long remained in the Overton Arm of Mead but previously have never ever truly taken off. Both here and in the Boulder Basin, the number of bronzebacks in tournament bags has actually doubled, with a lot of 2- to 4-pounders that should only grow heftier. Contact: Callville Bay Marina (800-225-5561;


11 EUFAULA LAKE East-central Oklahoma, 102,000 acres.

You may understand Eufaula as a largemouth lake, however smallmouths were stocked here for the very first time in the early 1990s. Their numbers are exploding, and 7-pounders are being captured. Contact: Eufaula Cove Marina (918-689-7723;

12 CHIPPEWA FLOWAGE Northwestern Wisconsin, 15,000 acres.

Home of the world-record muskie, this remote impoundment is starting to make its name as a bass fishery. Considering that a 14-inch minimum-size rule was placed on black bass, both largemouths and smallmouths are prospering, with great deals of 3- to 5-pounders. Contact: Wildes Guide Service (715-266-2529;

13 MISSISSIPPI RIVER Pools 9, 10, and 11; northeastern Iowa; 92 river miles.

With zebra mussels clarifying the famously muddy waters, sight-feeding smallmouths are booming in Iowa’s upper reaches of the Mississippi. Inning accordance with area fisheries biologists, a good angler can fight 40 to 50 bronzebacks each day, numerous in the 12- to 18-inch variety. Contact: J&L Bait Shop (563-586-2557).

14 LAKE JACOMO East-central Missouri, 980 acres.

Jacomo has long been an excellent white bass fishery, but enhanced management and environment make it an up-and-comer for 1- to 5-plus-pound largemouths. Expect lots of bass over 15 inches this year and next. Contact: Lake Jacomo Marina (816-795-8888;

15 LAKE SHARPE Central South Dakota, 56,000 acres.

When biologists just recently turned their focus to smallmouths at this regionally known walleye fishery, they produced impressive varieties of small bronzebacks. So 3 years earlier, they went to a slot limit. Now it’s paying dividends in the form of great deals of progressively fat fish. Contact: South Dakota Walleye Charters (605-366-1875;

16 REND LAKE Southern Illinois, 19,000 acres.

Fisheries supervisors have put over 200,000 bass in Rend Lake over the past 4 years and instituted a 14-inch minimum-size limit. Anglers are balancing 1- to 4-pound bass and consider 6-pounders to be somewhat routine. Contact: Rend Lake Resort (618-629-2211;

17 SOUTH 10 MILE LAKE West-central Minnesota, 1,411 acres.

A 21-inch minimum-size limitation stamped on both largemouths and smallmouths in 2001 is starting to deliver. Now, the typical size is way up, both species are more plentiful, and some bass are already going 6 and 7 pounds. Contact: Joy Resort (218-675-6574;


18 LAKE MURRAY Central South Carolina, 51,000 acres.

Drawn down in 2003 and refilled last year, this Saluda River impoundment has actually been revitalized with coastline plants and nutrients. Biologists anticipate great catches of largemouths and stripers. Contact: Norm Attaway Palmetto Fishing Guide (803-442-9484; 1fghp. com/Palmetto/clarkshill. html).

19 LAKE GUNTERSVILLE Northeastern Alabama, 69,000 acres.

In the ’90s, Guntersville went from having too much yard to having too little. Now it’s among the nation’s best bass lakes, with great deals of 3- to 6-pounders as well as 8- to 10-pounders. A 2004 competition produced a three-day, 15-fish limit weighing 99 pounds. Contact: Tee’s Guide Service (256-859-1465;

20 LAKE EUFAULA Southeastern Alabama, 45,000 acres.

Huge bass are back at Eufaula after being badly diminished by a bout of largemouth bass virus in 1996 and ’97. Since then, recruitment has been exceptional. There are lots of 4- and 5- pounders, and they’re growing. Contact: Eufaula Guide Solutions (770-884-9421;

21 CROOKED LAKE Central Florida, 5,538 acres.

Crooked Lake diminished through the 1970s and ’80s due to drought and remained in bad shape for 20 years. However water levels have rebounded and you can use yourself out on 2- to 4-pound fish, with a genuine chance at an 8- or 9-pounder. Contact: A # 1 Bass Guide Service (800-707-5463;

22 ORANGE LAKE North-central Florida, 13,000 acres.

Drought lowered Orange’s roughly 10,000 acres of open water to a simple 1,500. However since the rain-soaked year of 2003, the lake is back at complete pool, holding loads of 1- to 3-pound largemouths that need to just grow. Contact: Sportsperson’s Cove Resort (352-591-1435).

23 PARADISE PUBLIC FISHING AREA Southwest Georgia, 528 acres.

Two of the bigger lakes in this collection of little waters were remodelled during the early 2000s and are currently producing huge bass. 9- and 10-pounders have actually been caught, and last February, an angler boated an 11-pound 5-ounce monster. Contact: Paradise PFA (229-533-4792 or 912-285-6094;

24 LAKE LANIER North-central Georgia, 38,000 acres.

Not to motivate container biology, however illegally presented spotted bass and blueback herring, in addition to a minimum-size limitation passed in 1999, have actually included lots of 2-pound-plus spots to this well-known largemouth lake. Stripers are on the growth, too. Contact: Lake Lanier Striper & Bass Fishing Guide Service (770-967-6582;

25 CHATTAHOOCHEE RIVER Northwest Georgia, 12 river miles.

Belonging to the Chattahoochee, shoal bass had actually virtually vanished in Atlanta-area waters by 1970. However because stockings started downstream of Morgan Falls Dam in 2003, an unusual, growing, and virtually untapped fishery exists for lively 1- to 4-pound shoalies. Contact: Costs Vanderford Guide Service (770-289-1543;

26 CHICKAHOMINY AND JAMES RIVERS Southeastern Virginia, 11,500 acres combined.

The Bassmaster Classic was here in 1988, ’89, and ’90 but hasn’t returned given that drought pinched the fishery through much of the following years. After a damp 2002, the tidal rivers have actually been roaring back. Now you can catch lots of 12- to 15-inchers, with a shot at 5- to 6-pounders. Contact: River’s Rest Motel and Marina (804-829-2753;

27 LAKE LINCOLN Southwestern Mississippi, 550 acres.

Drawn way down and restocked in 2000, Lincoln was resumed in 2002 and is now on line to pump out some leviathans. Biologists expect to see 8- to 10-pounders in the next few years. Contact: Lake Lincoln State Park (601-643-9044; View/parks. asp?ID= 5853).

28 LAKE OUACHITA West-central Arkansas, 40,000 acres.

Currently the “Striper Capital of the World,” Ouachita might soon become a terrific smallmouth fishery. Lake supervisors have planted practically 100,000 Tennessee reservoir-strain smallies in the lake and strategy to stockpile to 100,000 more each year for the next four years. Contact: Lake Ouachita State Park (501-767-9366;

29 KENTUCKY LAKE AND LAKE BARKLEY Southwestern Kentucky and northwestern Tennessee,.

218,200 acres integrated.
Bass fishing in these twin lakes went downhill when vegetation passed away off in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Now, the yard is back and the action is soaring for largemouths and specifically smallies. Contact: Captain Kirk’s Guide Service (270-354-6017;

30 CEDAR CREEK LAKE South-central Kentucky, 784 acres.

This new lake is the first in Kentucky developed and handled specifically for trophy bass. Cedar Creek is currently producing fish topping the 20-inch minimum-size limitation, and the lake’s biologists want to eventually see 8- and 9-pounders. Contact: Cedar Creek Lake Outfitters (606-355-0100).

31 BIENVILLE PLANTATION LAKES Northeastern Florida, 4,000 acres.

Twenty years ago, miners hit the last of several aquifers, filling the last of these 12 connected lakes. Eight years later on, Bienville Plantation started offering assisted bass fishing and has actually since created hawg heaven. A year and a half earlier, the plantation began a lawn management program. Now, a great day suggests 50 fish from 2 to 10 pounds, with a shot at a 15-plus-pounder. Contact: Bienville Plantation (478-621-0951;


32 SPEDNIK LAKE Eastern Maine, 17,000 acres.

If you’ve been reading F&S for over 40 years, you might remember this boundary water as an oft-publicized smallmouth location. After competitors with sea-run alewives all but annihilated its bronzeback population in the 1980s, Spednik is back. Now you can head out and capture 50 to 60 smallmouths in a day. Contact: The Town Camps (207-448-7726;

33 THREE RIVERS Ohio, Allegheny, and Monongahela Rivers, southeastern Pennsylvania, 150 river miles.

Don’t laugh. Sure, the 2005 Bassmaster Classic held here is now notorious for small fish. However the catch rates were good, and those bass will quickly be topping the 15-inch variety. Plus, an outstanding year class in 2005 must suggest fast action through a minimum of 2010. Contact: Matthew Geppert Guide Services (412-841-2222;

34 ONEIDA LAKE North-central New York, 51,000 acres.

Over the previous Ten Years, zebra mussels have actually improved the water clarity and helped increase aquatic greenery in this regionally celebrated walleye fishery. Now, smallmouths are taking off in both numbers and size. BASS pros are comparing Oneida positively with Lake Champlain. Contact: Oneida Lake Marina (315-762-4865;

35 UPPER CHESAPEAKE BAY Northeastern Maryland, over 30,000 acres.

Biologists aren’t sure precisely why aquatic yards are unexpectedly taking root here. But all anglers have to know is that it’s producing terrific fishing. Some FLW pros now call the whole Upper Bay– consisting of the lower Susquehanna, Elk, Bohemia, and Sassafras Rivers– much better than the renowned lower Potomac. Contact: Karl’s Bassin’ Adventures (410-459-7445;