9 Best Winter Fishing Spots in the South

Last Updated: 30.05.20

If you are a fan of ice fishing and you are living in the south, the task of finding a lake where you can enjoy your hobby might not be as easy as you think. However, all local fishermen, as well as those, want to get away from the coldness of the north should take a good look at the list to destinations that we have put together in an attempt to help you out. So, keep on reading and select the place that you believe best fits your needs and expectations.

Lake Okeechobee

As you probably already know, one of the best winter fishing destinations that you can go to while in the South is Lake Okeechobee. This body of water is situated in the warm state of Florida and is ideal if you are a fan of freshwater fishing. Here you can angle for some crappie or largemouth bass and you are surely not going to be disappointed.

In fact, Lake Okeechobee is said to be filled with trophy-sized bass that anglers simply love fishing it. Therefore, if you’ve been dreaming about catching a sizeable bass, this is should be your next destination this winter.  However, once you get here, it is advisable that you get some help from the local fishermen so that you find a place where to set your collapsible spinning rod.


Lake Powell

If you are an Arizona citizen, you should not miss the chance of exploring Lake Powell. This body of water is another great place to come if you are interested in bass fishing. Here, if you choose a shallow area, you can be sure that you’ll catch a largemouth bass. To better your chances, make sure that you come equipped with some crank baits.

Still, if you’re targeting smallmouth bass, you’ll have better luck if you try your chances in the open waters area. In order to catch the latter species, specialists recommend that you opt for buzz baits. Moreover, if you want to catch some stripers, you should use plastic baits. Similarly, Lake Powell is the place to go if you want to try your chances of catching walleyes or crappie.


Savannah River

Another place that you should go to whenever you want to have an ice fishing expedition is Savannah River. Located in Georgia, this lake is great for fishing sunfish and bluegill throughout the year.

Nonetheless, if you want to catch some striped or largemouth bass, we recommend that you pick a place on the southern part of the lake, as the bass are usually gathering here during the winter. Yet, we should remind you that bass fishing within the boundaries of Georgia is strictly regulated. So, before you cast your rod, make sure that you’ve read all you need to know on the subject. This way you can avoid any unfortunate run-ins with the law.


Toledo Bend Reservoir

If you’re from Texas and you enjoy fishing, Toledo Bend Reservoir is certainly a name that rings some familiar bells for you. This is a great destination if you are looking for a location to catch some largemouth bass during the cold days of late winter.

If you want to maximize your chances of catching something, it is best that you set your rod on the shallow waters of Toledo Bend, meaning in the lower part of the reservoir. Bait-wise, it might be a good idea to use some crankbaits or some spinnerbaits.  If you decide to use live bait, your chances of ending up with a catfish are increased. Here, you can also try your luck at catching some crappie.


Caddo Lake

According to the specialists, you can’t talk about the best winter fishing spots out there without mentioning Caddo Lake. If you come here in early spring or in late winter, your chances of catching some sizeable crappie are maximized.

Likewise, Caddo Lake is a great destination for white bass and largemouth fishing. If you want to catch some bass, for the best results possible it is advisable that you use spinnerbaits. If you have crappie on your mind, pick the creeks as the place to set up your road, this way, you surely won’t be disappointed.


Sardis Lake

If you are targeting crappie that is at least 2 pounds, pack your bags and go to Sardis Lake, near Memphis, Tennessee. If you come here during late winter, your chances of catching some sizeable fish are greatly increased. As baits, it is best that you use jigs and minnows.

If you want to get the best results, previous fishermen say that it is best if one uses its sonar gear to locate the fish ledges. Even more so, keep in mind that usually, fish change locations from one area of the lake to another in accordance with the clarity of the water and the penetration of the light.

Dale Hollow Lake

Another great place to aim for smallmouth is Dale Hollow Lake. Known as the Smallmouth Capital of the World, this lake does not disappoint, not even during winter. The fish are sizeable and the locals are ready to rent you the needed accommodation and gear.

For more info about what type of bait to use and where to pick your fishing spot, make sure that you talk to the local guides that are more than happy to help you out.


Greers Ferry Lake

If you want to come home with some walleyes and you are not afraid to fight the cold winter temperatures to catch some, we suggest that you take a trip to Greers Ferry Lake. Here your chances of catching an 18 pounds fish are the best.

The recommended spots to go to while fishing here are the Devils Fork, the South Fork, and the Middle Fork. For baits, you should use either minnow plugs or live bait (bluegill).


Tennessee River Reservoirs

Another place that you certainly should consider is the Tennessee River Reservoirs. Here you can catch saugers, panfish, and perch.

If you go to Kentucky Lake, the top sauger location in the country, you will certainly come back home a happy man/woman. According to the specialists, with minimal training, one can effortlessly catch some big fish that won’t fail one’s expectations.


Additional information

As expected, the anglers in the south are some of the luckiest fishing enthusiasts in the world due to the fact that they are close to some of the best freshwater sources out there. Consequently, they can enjoy fishing no matter the season.

However, before you decide to go on a new fishing adventure, you should take the time to do some reading. For instance, you should learn what you should do in case of hypothermia or in the unfortunate case when one of your friends falls into the icy water.

Moreover, if you are a novice when it comes to this type of fishing, you should always hire a local guide to show you around and to explain to you all you need to know about this activity. Last but not least, make sure that you always bring a cell phone with you so that you can call for help if necessary.



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