Category: Fishing

Where is the Best Fishing in Texas? 5 Spots You Can’t Miss in The Lone Star State


There are few things more hotly contested than fishing spots. Like trying to compile a list of the best pizza toppings of all time. You are bound to upset the mushroom and sausage crowd if you dare to leave it off of your list. In that way, our list of locations for the best fishing in Texas is kind of like pizza.

Have we lost you yet?

The point is, this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the best fishing in Texas. The famously sizeable Lone Star State offers more than a few options for those looking to reel in some Texas-sized fun.

(Some of) The Best Fishing in Texas

  • Toledo Bend Reservoir: Featuring excellent sunfish and largemouth bass and known as a quality year-round fishery, the Toledo Bend Reservoir is the largest man-made body of water in the South.
  • Port Mansfield: Located on the Laguna Madre, this saltwater fishing favorite features plentiful speckled trout and easy access to the Gulf.
  • Lake Texoma: If you’re in search of bass and catfish, this is your spot. Featuring abundant striped bass, smallmouth bass, blue catfish and a number of others, this large reservoir should not be overlooked.
  • Lake Fork: One of the country’s top trophy bass lakes, Lake Fork serves up plentiful largemouth bass and catfish, as well as some crappie and sunfish in the spring and summer.
  • Rollover Pass: Summer and fall fishing at its finest, this man-made straight is an extremely active fishing spot on the Bolivar Peninsula that connects East Bay with the Gulf.

If you’re an active fishing enthusiast visiting for the first time or a local who has recently caught the fishing bug, give these spots a try for some of the best fishing in Texas. Though these are far from all of the best fishing spots in the state, this list may just get you started off with a few big stories to tell. Don’t be afraid to frequent a few fishing supplies and bait shops to meet fellow boaters and anglers–they may be able to teach you a thing or two.

As always, boat safely and enjoy your time on the water!

For more fishing spots in Texas:

Catch of the Day: Which Florida Fish Can I Reel In?

Florida Fish

“Let’s go fishing.” The phrase perks the ears, raises the blood pressure and gets many a boater champing at the bit. There is nothing like hitting your favorite fishing spot at the crack of dawn, cool breeze mixing with the warmth of the day’s first rays of sunlight. Spending the day catching (or at least trying to catch) Florida fish is a Sunshine State pastime that we love.

However, Florida is such an eclectic bastion of fishing hot spots that it’s sometimes hard to figure out exactly which Florida fish are in season and where to drop your lure.

Which Florida Fish Can I Catch?

  • Grouper – Generally found at lower depths, there are multiple species of grouper found throughout West and Southwest Florida.
  • King Mackerel – Often found near shore and migrating south during cooler months, this fish is popular among tournament fishermen.
  • Red Drum – Residing in mostly shallow, salty or brackish waters of Southwest Florida, these fish used to be overfished but are now allowed to catch up to two fish per day (outside of federal waters).
  • Red Snapper – This pink-hued Florida fish is allowed to be caught in the Gulf up to nine nautical miles from shore and up to three nautical miles in the Atlantic.
  • Sailfish – A fish known for its sword-like nose, large dorsal fin and ability to jump out of the water, this beauty is a prized catch in the tropical/subtropical waters of South Florida.
  • Spotted Sea Trout – Found in the shallower waters of Indian River Lagoon and Clearwater areas, this is another extremely popular sportfish.
  • Tarpon – Though not known for its good eating, tarpon is a gamefish that’s sure to put up a noble fight. Find this super popular gamefish across the east of the state, including Tampa, the Keys, and Fort Myers.

Note that all of the fish listed above may have varying rules and regulations associated with them. To make sure you’re following Florida’s fishing regulations, be sure to check in on the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission for a comprehensive list. If you need any help finding a boat lift that can help keep your vessel safe after that big fishing trip, we may just know a thing or two. Oh, and feel free to let us know if you need help with leftovers from your fish fry.

What’s the Catch? Fishing with Bait or Lures

Bait or Lures
Spinners, spoons, poppers, jigs; no we’re not listing the latest in hip-hop slang that you’ll have to get your kids to translate. We’re talking bait and lures, one of the biggest battles raging in many a fishing household. Are bait or lures better for your favorite fishing hole? Well, we’re going to have to play Switzerland in this conflict, and for good reason: both natural bait and artificial lures have their respective pros and cons depending on your fishing spot and targeted fish. So, what do you need to know before picking the right tools for your next fishing foray?

Bait or Lures: Variations, Pros and Cons

Live Bait
Live bait is mostly utilized in freshwater fishing, including a number of small critters, such as worms, minnows, crickets, grasshoppers, beetles, snails, fish roe and leeches. Though the squeamish may have some trouble with this practice, live bait has been used for eons, preferred by many for its natural color, odor and texture. There is no beating the allure of all-natural bait when it comes to sheer, instinctual attraction for many fish.

Live bait is not without its downsides, however. For one, it’s often much more work to ensure that your bait is kept alive and kicking. Besides storage, acquiring local bait can sometimes be a tall order. Sure, you could just pick up bait from anywhere, but local bait is often much more effective since it’s familiar to the fish that you’re trying to reel in.

Artificial Lures
To the live bait fans, we say the most sincere form of flattery is imitation, and that is precisely the aim of artificial lures. Providing a level of variety and options for any fishing hole, artificial lures have live bait beat when it comes to flexibility. Though you’d be hard-pressed to find a lure that can perfectly imitate live bait, many modern lures do a pretty darn good job. Crankbaits, plugs, flies, jigs, spinners, spoons, poppers and more can all add up to an arsenal of options regardless of where you’re casting your reel.

On the downside, again, at best, these lures are simply imitations of the real prey of the fish you’re trying to catch. Not to mention the learning curve of mastering the right tool for the job. Are you looking to catch fish at the surface, subsurface or bottom levels? Should I go high or low tech? What colors or movement will work best? There are often a stifling amount of questions that could deter beginners from making a decision.

Though choosing between live bait and artificial lures is not always an easy decision to make, always remember that fishing is supposed to be fun. Don’t sweat the small stuff when planning your first fishing fun. As always, this boating and fishing community that we’re all a part of is more than happy to share a few friendly tips, so don’t be afraid to ask for some advice when picking up your gear. You may have to sit through a big fish story or two, but you may just come back from your trip with a few stories to tell of your own.

For more information on the bait or lures debate:

Five Florida Fish to Reel In on Your Next Boating Trip

florida fish

Florida: a peninsula jutting out into the Atlantic, adjacent to the Gulf of Mexico, just above the crystal waters of the Caribbean, and covered in freshwater lakes, streams and ponds. All of this considered, Hi-Tide’s home is every boater’s dream when it comes to the sheer variety that Florida provides for fishing.

Though we could write a phonebook’s worth of information on the vast variety of Florida fish you may encounter, we’ve narrowed down our list to five that you should try to reel in on your next boating trip in the Sunshine State.

  • Sailfish: Regarded as the fastest fish in the ocean (clocked at speeds of 68 mph) and Florida’s official state saltwater fish, the sailfish is one gamefish that’s sure to give you a good story to tell once you’re back on shore. Look out for its iconic dorsal fin and long, spear-like upper jaw.
  • Spanish Mackerel: Holy mackerel, indeed. These fish a relatively easy catches in warm, clear waters and are often found migrating south during the fall and winter months.
  • Largemouth Bass: This Florida fish is a thing of legend. People come from around the world to try their luck at reeling in Florida’s official freshwater fish, known as North America’s most popular gamefish.
  • Red Drum: Also known as redfish, the Red Drum is commonly found in the Mosquito Lagoon, referred to as the “Redfish Capital of the World.” Look for this fish in salt and brackish waters.
  • Tarpon: Though not necessarily a good fish for eating, this is one of Florida’s most popular gamefish. This is a great Florida fish for those looking for a challenge, as the tarpon is known to be a fighter once hooked.

These fish are just the tip of the fin when it comes to the wide and eclectic variety of fish available in and around the Sunshine State. Whether you’re a Florida native or just visiting for a weekend, take the time to hit the water and reel in some fishing fun with your family and loved ones. As always, we’ll see you on the water.
Information cited from: Visit Florida

5 Can’t-Miss Florida Fishing Spots

Safety Drills

Florida is known for many things: theme parks, beaches, sunshine and oranges all rank highly on popularity polls. However, for many boaters, Florida fishing is the real reason to call The Sunshine State home. From freshwater to deep sea, lagoons to lakes, Florida is an undeniable treasure trove for fishing enthusiasts around the world.

Though many boaters’ favorite fishing spots are often kept something like a chef’s secret recipe, we’d like to share a few popular spots to enjoy boating and Florida fishing opportunities in virtually every corner of the state.

  • Indian River Lagoon: If you want redfish, these eastern lagoons offer them in droves. These waterways are known for their natural beauty just off the eastern coast of Florida, located in Titusville.
  • Miami: This South Florida city is not only known for being home to millionaires and serving up killer Cuban coffee. Miami offers a large variety of saltwater fish to reel in on your next trip, including the prized swordfish.
  • Jacksonville: Known as The River City by the Sea, Jacksonville is a perfect mix of saltwater, freshwater, deep sea and fly fishing opportunities. Don’t miss the annual Jacksonville Kingfish Tournament if you’re planning a visit in July.
  • The Florida Keys: Not just beautiful, unique and independent beach towns, the Florida Keys boast some truly world-class Florida fishing opportunities. Sailfish, marlin, bonefish, tarpon and so many others inhabit the blue waters surprisingly close to the shores of Cuba.
  • Sarasota: Featuring offshore, deep sea and intercoastal fishing, this Gulf-of-Mexico-adjacent town is great for luring in the likes of Spanish mackerel, flounder, bluefish, tarpon, red snapper and more.

If you’re a newcomer to any of the above, fishing-friendly towns, look into asking local guides for tips on their favorite spots to cast a reel under the famous Florida sun. There’s no shortage of reasons to get out on the water, so get out the poles and have some fun with your family and friends.