We are so fortunate here in Central Texas to have one massive chain of lakes fed by the Colorado River and others as this chain moves from northwest to southeast.
All of these lakes are productive bass sanctuaries that can, and probably do, hold the next Texas state record. Texas Parks & Wildlife manage each of the lakes to help us anglers try for that illusive record.
Let’s not make the mistake of thinking the Texas Colorado is the same as the mighty Colorado River that runs from Colorado to Mexico. Our Colorado gets its origin in the very eastern part of New Mexico and flows from northwest to southeast, and dumps into the Gulf of Mexico.
Anyway, back to what you are truly interested in. The first major lake in the Highland Chain of Lakes is Lake Buchanan, which stretches for 30 miles from Kingsland to the Buchanan Dam. Buchanan is an exceptional fishery that produces some outstanding stringer of bass. The lake record largemouth is 11.30 pounds and that only gets better the further you go down the chain of lakes.
Inks Lake is next in the chain and is the smallest of all the lakes in the chain, but still produces some monster bass. Inks record is 12.50 pounds. Inks is only 4.2 miles long and is regarded as one of the prettiest lakes in the chain.
Next is one of my favorites, Lake LBJ. LBJ is 21 miles long and produces giant size bags of fish. One of our club members just won our annual memorial tournament with a sack weighing in at 20 pounds, 6 ounces for the day. I followed him up a week later in another tourney with a 16 pound, 4 ounce bag. LBJ record for largemouth is 13.70 pounds and 6.46 pounds for smallmouth bass. This is not a lake you want to overlook.
LBJ flows into Lake Marble Falls. Lake Marble Falls is only 5.7 miles long but produces some outstanding catches as well. Its lake record largemouth is 11.18 pounds and smallmouth is 4.87 pounds.
I hate to admit it, but Mable Falls is often overlooked by a lot of fishermen because of its closeness to the larger lakes. However, like Inks, small lakes can produce monster bass.
Lake Marble Falls flows into the largest of the highland chain, Lake Travis. Lake Travis is over 60 miles long. Its largemouth record is 14.21 pounds and smallmouth is 4.50 pounds. I hate to admit it, but it’s one of the lakes that I have yet to fish; however, it is next on my list.
Travis then flows into Lake Austin. Lake Austin has some respectable numbers as well, with a largemouth record of 16.03 pounds and a smallmouth record of 4 pounds. I have fished the lake and when it was full of hydrilla, there were a lot of very heavy stringers that came out of the lake.
However, in an attempt to eradicate the hydrilla they put grass carp into the lake and dropped it over 10 feet to allow homeowners an opportunity to clean up around their boathouses. So now the lake is not producing as it has in the past.
Lake Austin then flows into Lady Bird Lake, which stretches through downtown Austin. Ladybird’s largemouth record is 13.50 Pounds and 5.75 pounds for smallmouth.
As you can see from the records, we here in Central Texas are blessed to have a wonderful chain of lakes within a couple of hours that do, and will, produce some exceptional fishing. Now that I have given you all this information, take a weekend and begin exploring and fishing these great lakes.
So get out there and catch a big ’un. If you have any questions and or comments send them to Hook_up66@Yahoo.com and I promise I’ll get your questions answered and take your comments into consideration. Have a great day on the water and let me see the pictures of those bass you catch on one of these outstanding lakes.
Jasper Johnson is retired from the U.S. Army and is the Copperas Cove Bass Club secretary. To contact him about the club or for any questions, call 318-218-0358 or email Hook_up@yahoo.com.