Best Bass Lakes of 2012: Lake Okeechobee

The Big O gets its name from two Indian words: oki (water) and chubi (big). As it stands this year, the “big” references the size of bass on this fishery that covers 730 square miles (it’s the second biggest freshwater lake contained entirely in the lower 48 states).

After several years of low water levels and mediocre production, Lake Okeechobee has come back with a vengeance. Ish Monroe won the March 2012 Elite Series event here with 108 pounds, 5 ounces — his biggest 5-fish limit hitting 34 pounds, 5 ounces. There were four limits caught that topped the 30-pound mark during the event, and the fish were postspawn!