As bass holes go, it is hard to beat the lakes in Florida. Some lakes are monstrous, while others are less daunting, but many of them offer anglers a realistic shot at big bass. Some of the best bass fishing holes in Florida are Lake Okeechobee, Lake Istokpoga, Lake George and the Kissimmee Chain of Lakes.
Kissimmee Chain of Lakes
Lakes Kissimmee, Toho, Cypress and Hatchineha make up this central Florida chain of lakes, which offer large beds of emergent and submerged vegetation that hold bass in all seasons. Early morning is the best time to find bass roaming along the edges of the vegetation. During the heat of the day, the bass move into the thick of the vegetation for the shade it provides. Successful anglers flip or pitch plastic worms to the places in the vegetation where there is something different such as an extremely thick or thin area or where two types of vegetation converge.
Part of the St. John's River, northern Florida's Lake George is the second-largest lake in the state, covering about 46,000 acres. The lake's shorelines include expansive shallow areas, and there is a drop-off at depths of 6 to 8 feet. This is a prime bass place, and the best way to catch bass is to find areas of the drop-off that offer something different. Anglers should begin the search for bass along the drop-off with fast-moving, search-type lures. Once they find an area that holds bass, anglers should switch to a slower presentation.
Southern Florida's Lake Istokpoga stretches more than 27,700 acres and offers some of the best bass catch rates of any lake in the state. The grass around the lake's many islands holds bass during all seasons, as do the mouths of the various creeks that run into the lake. As the year progresses, bass move to open-water parts of the lake. During low-light conditions, weed edges can be great places to fish topwater baits. Anglers should keep an eye on the lake's open water to try to locate schools of bass chasing shad. Dimples atop the water, or bass jumping out of the water, are good indications.
Central Florida's Lake Okeechobee is the state's best-known bass water. It can be an intimidating lake to fish because it features expansive beds of vegetation that make it difficult for fishermen to pinpoint the precise place to begin. The edges of vegetation are good spots to begin early in the day because the bass will be out along the edges. By the late morning, those bass will slide back into the vegetation for the shade. When that happens, anglers should search for emergent vegetation such as reeds and bulrushes. Other likely spots are holes in vegetation, or places where two types of vegetation converge. Bass also are located along the lake's deep-water channels.