5 Florida Freshwater Fishing Destinations
Here are five of our suggestions:
1) Lake Okeechobee – 730 square miles, located in south central Florida and easily accessible from Florida’s east or west coasts. The Big “O” (as Lake Okeechobee is often called), is shallow and provides the ideal habitat for bass. It’s not uncommon for anglers to hook into a 7 to 10 pounder while fishing with either shiners, plastic worms or spinner baits. Crappies are also abundant from December through April (cooler months). Moore Haven, Clewiston, South Bay, Belle Glade, and Port Mayaca are good places to start.
2) Fred Babcock/Cecil B. Webb Wildlife Management Area – 5 miles South of Punta Gorda on Interstate 75, off of exit 158 (Tucker’s Grade). Turn East at ramp and drive .25 miles to entrance. The 395-acre lake here has record-sized bluegill, freshwater snook, and largemouth bass.
3) Lake Kissimmee – 35,000 acre natural lake located just south of St. Cloud. Bass over 10 pounds are regularly reported on this lake. Target deep water peppergrass and hydrilla during the warmer months. There are six fish camps, a state park and three boat ramps available for public use.
4) Lake George – This is Florida’s second largest lake, located 18 miles northwest of Deland, 29 miles east of Ocala. Lake George provides some key areas to wade fish for bass using plastic worms fished on the surface or topwater artificials. During spring spawning season, you’ll be most productive using shiners. Striper fishing here can be also be very good along the east side of the lake from October through April when the water is cool. Access to the lake is provided through a variety of fish camps and landings. Note, however, that there is no pier or bank fishing.
5) St. John’s River – This river stretches 260 miles from southwest of Melbourne northward towards Jacksonville. The St. John’s is home to a high population of speckled perch, crappies and catfish. Crappies are best fished from December through March along the hydrilla, water lilies and eel grass. Large catfish are typically caught here during the months of May through June. A few of the most commonly fished areas of the St. John’s are Lakes Jessup, Monroe and Woodruff.
Pack up your Texas Rigs, grab some shiners and get FRESH every once and awhile!