Bass fishing reigns supreme when it comes to sport fishing. It’s a favorite pastime of many anglers, no matter where you go in America. Personally, I enjoy traveling and aiming for a large catch. Striped, Largemouth, Smallmouth, Black, White – name it, I caught it! And to make sure that you’ll have an excellent bass fishing trip, I’ll share the best bass fishing lakes in the US. These are just some of the lakes I’ve visited in the past years, which are largely populated with bass fishes. See which one you’d like to visit next!
8 Best Bass Fishing Lakes in the US
1. Lake Guntersville, Alabama
Lake Guntersville will always be memorable for me. It’s located in North Alabama, planked between Guntersville and Bridgeport. This lake is home to largemouth, spotted, and smallmouth bass all-year-round.
This isn’t surprising because Lake Guntersville is the largest in Alabama with a shoreline that stretches up to 950 miles.
Inside the lake park, you’ll find the Town Creek Fishing Center and Pinecrest Restaurant. You can also plan a fishing weekend here because they also offer lodges and boat rentals. The place is also complete with dining amenities like The Hickory Lounge and banquets.
Before you go here, you should call their office first. They also host tournaments here where you can also join with proper booking.
Overall, they have 200 cabins at their Base Camp, where you can book a stay during your fishing trip. You can also rent boats and kayaks on their fishing center for a specific fee.
2. Clear Lake, California
If you’re in California, you shouldn’t miss Clear Lake. This is located in Lake County at the northern side of the San Francisco and Napa County. This is the perfect lake for those who are angling for largemouth.
Clear Lake is a 43,000-acre reserve, which is the largest natural lake in California. It’s also believed to be one of the oldest in North America.
Aside from largemouth bass, Clear Lake also houses a variety of catfishes and bullheads. While California isn’t always a top choice for angling, I highly recommend that you check Clear Lake.
Clear Lake is a picturesque spot in California with rolling hills and a vast expanse of foliage. The lake also changes its color per season; it turns green to vibrant copper as the natural spring water merges with the lake. It’s a great spot to spend the weekend away from the hustle and bustle of California.
3. Lake Havasu, Arizona
For those who are in the south, Lake Havasu is an excellent spot for bass fishing. It’s dubbed as ‘Arizona’s Playground’ since it’s been developed as a recreational center. You can fish, ride a hot air balloon, rent a speed boat, ride ATVs, and more. You can also book a room here for extended stays.
For anglers, Lake Havasu is a fishing paradise. It’s the perfect spot to catch some striped, largemouth, and smallmouth bass fishes. Fishing is also available here all-year-round. Just note that the place gets crowded during peak season as Lake Havasu accepts over 2.5 million visitors a year.
During sunny and warm days, you can chance on clear waters where you can easily lure fishes. As the season heats up, smallmouth fishing also becomes a favorite pastime here. Take note that even though Lake Havasu is a desert lake, it can get chilly here during winter.
4. Millwood Lake, Arkansas
In the south again is Millwood Lake, located at Lockesburg, Arkansas. This lake is an excellent spot for striped, largemouth, and spotted bass. Fishing is allowed all-year-round, thanks to its flooded timber waterways. It gives excellent cover for the fishes where you can easily hook a catch.
This is a pretty easy lake, which is ideal for beginners who want a boost of confidence for their angling skills. Millwood Lake authorities also host tournaments here with excellent success rates.
Moreover, Millwood Lake is 29,000 acres wide. Aside from bass, it’s also a top spot for crappie, bluegills, and catfish.
Overall, Millwood Lake is a quiet place where you can take the entire family for a weekend trip. There are 117 campsites all over the Millwood State Park as well as full-service marinas, biking trails, and hiking trails. If you’re planning to spend a night or two, make sure that you call the park to book your stay.
5. Lake Okeechobee, Florida
Lake Okeechobee is dubbed as Florida’s ‘Inland Sea’ since it’s the largest freshwater lake in the state. It’s a vast expanse of freshwater where you can catch a variety of bass species. This is why Lake Okeechobee has been a favorite of many anglers who want to catch the country’s biggest bass.
This lake is a 730 square mile beauty, which is one of the reasons why Florida earned the title as the country’s fishing capital. Just note that this lake is massive, so it’s best to hire a charter.
You can access the lake to any point, but the most popular is the west side, where a lot of anglers hop off. There is also a lot of boat rental and tackle shops on the west side.
If you’re a beginner, you can start with a small channel within the lake. For the best chances of catching bass, I suggest aiming for water clarity of at least two feet.
6. Lake Erie, Pennsylvania
When it comes to Lake Erie, bigger is better. This is a massive lake in the city of the same name. Lake Erie is popular for avid boaters, anglers, and tourists who want to spend some quiet time.
According to authorities, anglers catch about 1.5 million fishes each year from Lake Erie. A large chunk of this catch is bass fishes. And if you want the most abundant catch, you should head straight to the Presque Isle Bay.
Presque Isle Bay is one of the most popular and oldest spots in the Great Lakes. The park hosts thousands of anglers each year since fishing is available here 24/7.
You can catch both smallmouth and largemouth bass here. If you have the time, I suggest taking side trips around the Horseshoe Pond, Misery Bay, and the famed Marina Lake.
7. Lake St. Clair, Michigan
Lake St. Clair in Michigan is the best spot if you want to catch white and rock bass. Its waters are also home to smallmouth and largemouth bass, making it an attractive angling spot across skill levels.
Take note that half of Lake St. Clair is located in Ontario, Canada, and the best time to fish is spring through fall.
Lake St. Clair always makes it to top bass lakes in the country. Aside from being angler-friendly, Lake St. Clair houses a 1,600-foot boardwalk and a fully serviced recreational facility. This is a great place for family vacations and angling weekends.
If you want to take a break from fishing, you can dive into the Olympic-size swimming pool on the Metropark. There’s also an 18-hole golf course here as well as tennis courts. This is quite a busy place, but you can always find a good spot for fishing.
8. Grand Lake O’ the Cherokees, Oklahoma
Last but not the least, consider going to Oklahoma to fish at Grand Lake O’ the Cherokees or Grand Lake OK, as it’s fondly called. This is located right at the foot of Ozark Mountain Range, giving it a picturesque view.
The lake is surrounded by restaurants, motels, marinas, and tackle shops. With this, it’s easy to plan a fishing vacation here.
Grand Lake OK is teeming with crappie, bass, catfish, and bluegills. The lake is 1,300 miles of shoreline and 59,000 acres of water surface – more than enough for an angler to spend the day fishing.
If you plan to stay more a few days, you can check in to nearby resorts or RV sites. You can also rent a charter on marinas surrounding the lake. Grand Lake OK is very family-friendly since it’s also surrounded by tons of amenities that both kids and adults will love.
These best bass fishing lakes in the US will give you fun trips all over the country. It’s also a great way to bond with your family after months of working. Instead of settling on the nearby lake, you can go beyond to level up your angling skills.