Best Bass Lakes of 2013: Sam Rayburn

This perennial bass fishing powerhouse is on the uptick. After a major drought drawdown, the water has returned to Rayburn and with it a “new lake” effect, which has made fishing on the 114,000-acre impoundment much like it was when it opened to the public in 1965. It is taking 30-pound limits to win, and based on scads of recent tournament data, it seems the average fish weighed is right at 3 pounds. Big bass for most events are more than 10 pounds, with some nearing the 12-pound mark.

“Rayburn is an absolute bass factory,” says Texas angler Stacy Twiggs. “Anyone can come out here and have the best bass fishing day of their lives. You can catch ’em all day long, and your next cast could be the biggest bass you’ve ever hooked.”