Other Lake County Florida Bass Fishing Lakes

The following information is provided by Phil & Judy Kelley, Realtors
Lake County Florida's Lakefront Property Specialists

 


Lake County Florida contains 167 square miles of water surface area with hundreds of fishable lakes.  Some are now closed to the general public but all the larger lakes have public boat ramps grandfathered in from the days when the county was less much populated.  It would be impossible to list them all, so I have listed some of the most accessible.  Lake Yale is technically part of the Harris Chain, but because it is landlocked and must be accessed by it's own separate ramp I included it in this section. 

Lake Yale

Lake Yale Bass Fishing MapLake Yale contains 4,042 acres of water.  This lake was very clear until the mid nineties when chemical weed spraying and the over stocking of grass carp removed most of the cover.  The introduction of grass carp has been the most troublesome.  Game officials have attempted to physically remove the excess carp  and even had to fence off and replant wide sections of the shoreline grass.  This man-made disaster turned the once pristine Lake Yale water to a murky algae-bloom brown.

Subsequent droughts occasionally reduced lake levels to a point where the lake was not accessible to most anglers for a period of well over a year.  The excellent water quality this lake was once known for has yet to return and it stands as a stark testament to another attempt by water managers to fix a complex problem with quick solutions.

This lake has always been a favorite of mine and contains a good population of bass.  They seem to run smaller than main Harris Chain bass but make up for it in numbers.  All the Harris Chain tactics outlined in this website work well.   The lake is deeper than most and has a hard sand bottom, making it ideal for a Carolina rig.  The large pad fields in the cove nearest to the Marsh Park boat ramp and in the area behind Rabbit Island hold bass year round.  The entire southern shoreline borders a deep offshore ditch that runs down the lake creating a great drop off for Carolina rigging.  Crankbaits take the larger bass in this lake.  The lake can be accessed from a nice ramp in Marsh Memorial Park.  The park is located a few miles north of Eustis off State Road 452.

Clermont Chain

Click here to download a printable map of the Clermont Chain

Clermont Chain Boat DockThe Clermont Chain was once a peaceful pristine chain of lakes near the little City of Clermont, Florida.  Tremendous over development in South Lake County has had a serious negative effect on this chain.  A dispute over the head waters in the Green Swamp caused water levels to plummet putting most residential boat docks far above the water.  The dispute was finally resolved but low water levels remain problematic. Incredibly, amidst all of these water supply problems the Water Management Authority approved a new water bottling plant in Clermont doubling down on the problem.

The once clear waters of Lake Minneola are now stained but the bass are still there in good numbers.  The canals connecting the lakes are especially good if you can find water in them.  These lakes are best fished on the weekdays as jet-skiers and cruisers are a distraction on weekends. 

John's Lake

The John's Lake boat ramp is about 6 miles east of Clermont on Highway 50. Even with the development of most of the shoreline and it's close proximity to Orlando, this lake produces excellent bass fishing.    Everything about this lake is right for bass.  The water color is good with a slight stain, there are many rocky bottom structures and reefs throughout the lake and there is adequate cover despite the building of huge homes around the shoreline.   During droughts this lake also suffers from severe water level problems.  Extreme care should be taken when using at the Highway 50 boat ramp in low water.  In the Spring of 2003, the State of Florida restocked the lake with 500,000 bass fingerlings and the lake has regaining it's reputation as a great bass fishery. 

Lake Dorr and the Forest Lakes

Lake Dorr in the Ocala National ForestLittle Lake Dorr is in my opinion the most beautiful bass lake in Florida.  Nestled in the Ocala National forest off highway 19, this lake looks like it came out of a picture postcard.   Surrounded by pine forest covered hills, the black tannic colored water reflects a scene out of a Canadian nature documentary. 

Bass fishing in this lake is a bonus.  Top water action can be good early in the morning with Carolina rigged worms working later in the day.  The bottom is very hard and deep and the bass are beautiful and full of fight. The lake has a nice ramp in Lake Dorr Park off highway 19 just north of the City of Umatilla. 

Throughout the Ocala National Forest there are many other small forest lakes.  Most of the bass caught in these lakes run about 1 to 3 pounds, but a few can be very large.  The National Park prints a brochure that can be obtained at the park information centers detailing all the lakes and providing access information.  Fly fisherman love these lakes as they are a treat to fish with light tackle. 

In case you're wondering about Rodman Reservoir, Lake Toho or the St. Johns River, they are not in Lake County.  Rodman is about 45 minutes north of my home in Eustis.  Lake Toho is about an hour south and some of the best fishing on the St. John's River is only about 1/2 hour from my home.

If you have any questions or comments about Lake County Florida lakes, please contact me.
 

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Phil Kelley
Lake County Florida Bass Fishing
P.O. Box 325
Tavares, FL 32778
352 223-4483
phil@lakefrontflorida.com

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