Bass Fishing in White Rock Lake: Top Place in Texas

By Tom Keer

Jul 12, 2017

Angler's living in major metropolitan cities always look for ways to get on the water, but White Rock Lake makes it easy.  Where else can you catch largemouth bass, white bass, and catfish so close to downtown?

Anglers in major metropolitan cities frequently suffer from a lack of fishing opportunities.  But the bass fishing in White Rock Lake located 15 minutes from downtown Dallas provides excellent fishing so close to an urban environment.  It's located in White Rock Lake Park, and is the best in the Dallas park system.  Over 1,000,000 people visit the park, many of them being fishermen.

White Rock Lake Fishing is relatively easy.  The 1,088 acre lake's maximum depth is 20 feet, so splitting the water column is a synch.  Boats are allowed, but there is a 9.9 horsepower limit.  Electric trolling motors are allowed as well and if you'd prefer to paddle then head to the White Rock Paddle Company and rent a kayak or a canoe.  There are eight fishing piers as well.  Swimming isn't allowed and neither is wade fishing so bank fishing it is.

Where to go for bass fishing in White Rock Lake is equally easy.  There is a good amount of submerged vegetation, and those plants provide aquatic insect life and solid baitfish populations.  Common species are water willow and bulrush stands, and they make excellent ambush points for largemouth bass.  The lake is fed by White Rock Creek and it's a tributary of the Trinity River, another of the better fishing spots in Dallas.  In the late winter and early spring the best places to fish are up river.  You'll find it to be an outstanding spot for seasonal white crappie.

Largemouth bass and catfish are two other popular species to catch, so spring, fall and winter are the best times for bass fishing in White Rock Lake. Summer temperatures can be Dallas hot, so if you're going to hit the water do so in the morning or in the evening.  Rubber worms, spinner baits, and spinners and spoons work well on the bass.  Live bait like shiners and minnows are good as well, and use chicken livers or shad on the catfish.

When White Rock Lake fishing, remember other folks use the lake as well, so be sure to share the resource with runners, sailors, and canoers.  If you find yourself in Dallas then get a fishing license and go!
Tom Keer
Tom Keer
Tom Keer is an award-winning writer who lives on Cape Cod, Massachusetts.  He is a columnist for the Upland Almanac, a Contributing Writer for Covey Rise magazine, a Contributing Editor for both Fly Rod and Reel and Fly Fish America, and a blogger for the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation’s Take Me Fishing program.  Keer writes regularly for over a dozen outdoor magazines on topics related to fishing, hunting, boating, and other outdoor pursuits.  When they are not fishing, Keer and his family hunt upland birds over their three English setters.  His first book, a Fly Fishers Guide to the New England Coast was released in January 2011.  Visit him at or at