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Reel Easy

Till Your Arms Ache


Anglers, mark your calendar so you don’t miss a Texas fishing tradition: the fruitful frenzy of the spring white bass run. Although white bass provide exciting action year-round, it’s easy to access a mess of them from the shore of a lake or stream from January through May.

During the spring run, large numbers of white bass head for the far upper ends or riverine sections of reservoirs, driven by the instinct to reproduce. Eager anglers wait for these dense populations of males followed by plump females and catch their limit quickly. (The statewide minimum length limit for white bass is 10 inches; the daily bag limit is 25.) Your arms might get tired from catching so many fish so quickly. Even better, they provide superb table fare. April and May can be good months for white bass as they finish spawning and migrate back to the reservoir, looking for food along the way.

White bass are excellent fighters, so load your tackle box with productive lures like twister tail jigs, hair jigs, crankbaits and topwaters. Anglers can also find success with live bait, so consider a trip to the local bait shop for minnows. 

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A great place to test the waters during the white bass run can be found northwest of Austin near Burnet, at the top of the Highland Lakes. Lake Buchanan boasts an excellent rating for white and striped bass. The fishery is also highly rated for catfish, largemouth bass and Guadalupe bass.

During the Lake Buchanan spring run, white bass (and striped bass) migrate up the Colorado River. Anglers concentrate their efforts from Beaver (Silver) Creek to the mouth of the Colorado River near Tow for late-spring action.

Colorado Bend State Park, popular with fly fishers, offers excellent access for anglers wishing to wade and bank fish for white bass in the upper reaches of the river above Lake Buchanan.

Some lake access sites include boat ramps; many have shoreline access that allows for bank fishing. Here are a few to consider: Buchanan Dam, Burnet County Park, Thunderbird Lodge, Canyon of the Eagles, Cedar Point Recreation Area and Llano County Park/Black Rock Park. Some locations require entry/access fees. Before you travel, always check out the location for fees, facilities and current conditions.

Click here for more information on Lake Buchanan fishing.

 Chase Fountain | TPWD

Other recommended white bass run sites include:

• Chandler River Park, Lake Palestine

• Grand Bluff Boat Ramp, Toledo Bend

• Granger Wildlife Management Area, Granger Lake

• Kingsland Slab RV Park, Llano River

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