Short Take: 186,000 acres; filled with brush, standing timber, hydrilla and eelgrass; shallow flats. One November day in 1967, Hemphill, Texas resident Tommy Martin and a friend launched their small aluminum boat in the new lake being built just out of town on the Sabine River. For weeks Martin had been watching the bulldozers—sometimes counting as many as 21 at a time—pushing down trees and brush around the Highway 21/6 bridge leading into Louisiana, and being an avid fisherman, he could hardly wait for the reservoir to fill. “All I had that day was one lure,” remembers Martin, “but it was enough. My friend and I caught 113 bass that day, and as you can see, 32 years later I’m still here and still fishing the same lake.” The lake is Toledo Bend, at 186,000 acres one of the largest man-made impoundments in the United States.
It is also one of the most famous in that it helped usher in the growing sport of bass fishing, not only to Texas and Louisiana but to the entire United States. Martin went on to become one of the premier guides on Toledo and later a top-ranked professional tournament competitor. Today, he still competes and guides regularly. Primary Species: Largemouth bass.
© 2000 Steve Price/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.