Largemouth Bass Fishing Outlook Better This Year

By Spencer Dumont

Largemouth bass anglers have a good selection of Big Country lakes to fish this year, and I am very optimistic about this year's bass fishing. For boat anglers, look for lakes Proctor, Brownwood, Hubbard Creek , and Fort Phantom Hill to be very good this year.

At Proctor, there should be lots of fish in the 14-16 inch range this spring and summer as the bass population continues to expand under the "new" reservoir conditions that this lake has experienced since it filled in spring of 2001.

Lake Brownwood continues to shine and produces good numbers of legal-sized bass (14 inches or longer) with an occasional eight-pounder.

Hubbard Creek Lake, despite its low water level, still produces decent numbers of bass and chances are good of catching bass over five pounds. However, please use caution at Hubbard Creek; there are plenty of old stumps and rocky islands just under the water that can really do some damage to the reckless boater. Boaters can launch at the east end of the dam at Hubbard Creek.

Other lakes that could be good include O.H. Ivie Lake and Lake Cisco. At O.H. Ivie, there is always a chance to


catch a trophy and, at Lake Cisco, there are plenty of small bass with a decent chance of catching four- to eight-pound fish if you catch it just right.

Lakes Leon and Coleman are in a recovery mode after filling up last July; there are plenty of small bass as a result of very good survival from last year's spawn. However, bigger bass may by scattered and hard to find. There is only one way to find out for sure…spring fishing.

There are several small lakes that should be good for tube/small boat anglers. The Newcastle lakes can be fun and, at New Newcastle, you even have a chance to catch a lunker bass as evidenced by the 13.38 lb. lake record that was caught last June. The Newcastle lakes are near Graham on SH 380.

Others that should be good are lakes Sealy, San Tana, Scarborough, and Memory in Coleman County. Lake McCarty near Albany filled up last May and has always been a good bass and crappie lake. T& P Lake in Baird has an excellent crappie population.

With the good news, comes the bad. There are several lakes that continue to be very low including Daniel, Sweetwater, Oak Creek, Abilene, Hords Creek, Clyde, and New Ballinger. Bass populations at Daniel, Abilene, and Clyde are very minimal, if not non-existent. Bass populations at the other lakes have been reduced significantly from their storied past.

For more information on area reservoirs and fish populations, contact the Abilene inland fisheries district office at (915) 692-0921 or email us at

Texas Parks and Wildlife Dept.
5325 N. 3rd
Abilene, TX 79603
(915) 692-0921

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