Fishing at Lake Dunlap, Texas


Largemouth Bass
Spotted Bass
Channel Catfish
Blue Catfish
White Crappie

Largemouth bass are the most popular and sought after species in the reservoir. These bass are abundant with frequent reports of large fish being boated. Spotted and smallmouth bass are also present, but in lower numbers. Although quality of crappie fishing can vary year to year, respectable catches are not uncommon in the cooler months. Channel catfish are the most abundant of the catfish species, with blue and flathead catfish present in moderate numbers. Bluegill, redear, and other sunfishes are abundant. They provide excellent angling opportunities, with some growing to 12 inches.


Largemouth bass (aka Black Bass, Green Trout, Bigmouth Bass, Lineside Bass)
Blue Catfish (aka Channel Cat, Hump-back Blue)
Channel Catfish (aka Willow Cat, Forked-tail Cat, Fiddler, Spotted Cat, Lady Cat)
Flathead Catfish (aka Yellow Cat, Opelousa Cat, Pied Cat, Mississippi Cat, Mud Cat, Shovelhead Cat)
White crappie (aka White Perch, Sac-a-lait)

Bass Identification Guide
Channel and Blue Catfish Identification Guide


Largemouth bass anglers are most successful on Lake Dunlap during the spring, fall, and winter months. Spawning period is late February to mid-April. Popular baits include spinnerbaits, buzzbaits, rattletraps, crankbaits, and soft-plastic worm or creature baits. Topwaters such as buzzbaits, Zara Spooks and Pop-R’s presented very early or late in the day near cover such as lily pads or blowdowns are very popular and can be productive throughout the day if cloud cover is present. Flipping jigs, tubes, or creature baits is another proven technique when worked in and around vegetation and boat docks.

Crappie fishing is usually best with live minnows near submerged brush and boat docks during the cooler months. Small jigs in white, pink, or black-chartreuse also can produce nice catches near submerged debris or vegetation. Catfish anglers can find channel catfish throughout the reservoir. While most catfish anglers prefer deeper water, blue and channel cats can often be found in relatively shallow timber flats or flooded terrestrial vegetation. Cheesebait and cutbait produce good catches, while live perch and shad can pay off for larger fish. Sunfish species such as bluegill, redear, and redbreast are abundant in the reservoir with several in the 12 inch class range. Target these fish with worms or crickets under a small bobber. Small artificials such as tiny crankbaits or beetlespins can also be very productive providing hours of enjoyment fishing.


Habitat in Lake Dunlap consists primarily of boat docks, piers, bulkheads, overhanging brush, and floating-leaf vegetation. Submerged trees, stumps, and brush can be found throughout the reservoir, providing excellent ambush and resting cover for most game fish species. The upper portion of the lake contains rock and gravel within the river channel, while the lower portion consist more of steep banks with a mud/clay substrate.


Native aquatic plant species present include spatterdock, water willow and strap-leaf sagittaria. These species are restricted to shallow water areas of the lake and adjacent to the river channel. Exotic vegetation present is currently limited to sparse amounts and floating fragments of hygrophila speces. Hydrilla and water hyacinth have also been problematic in the past, but through herbicide treatments and grass carp introductions these species are no longer present.


All species are currently managed under statewide regulations: Texas Parks and Wildlife Freshwater Bag and Length Limits



Maps are available from the GBRA (830) 379-5822. An online map is also available.
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