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Lake Kissimmee

Lake Kissimmee, Florida

Lake Kissimmee FishingLake Kissimmee one of the lakes on the Kissimmee Chain comprise the headwaters for the entire Everglades system. The upper part of the Chain originates in Orange County with lakes Hart and Mary Jane and continues south through many other countries. Most  lakes are acidic with tannin-stained, but despite the color most of the water is very productive. Bass fishing on the upper Lake Kissimmee Chain is generally good most of the year. However, at times decent numbers of bass can found on the South end of Lake Kissimmee, including the Kissimmee River.

The lower part of Lake Kissimmee is comprised of lots of Kissimmee grass with scattered hydrilla most all have periodic navigational problems with hydrilla at times when it thick. Lake Kissimmee is shallow and extremely sensitive to weather fronts in the winter and early spring. Those wanting to fish shiners will be the most successful under strong cold fronts. The bass divide time between the open water and the grass edges. Spawning bass start showing up in bulrush, cattails, kissimmee grass and lily pads in December or January.

Lake Kissimmee Fishing

Lakes Kissimmee is also one of the best for bluegill and shellcracker in the one-pound-plus range. The last full moon in March almost always finds bedding shellcracker, and bedding bluegill come in about the time shellcrackers are slowing down (April/May). All lakes in the lower chain are accessible from the boat basin in Kissimmee through a lock at the southwest corner of Lake Kissimmee at the entrance to the river. Other access points are at Lake Cypress Rd., off C.R.523 out of St. Cloud; and on Overstreet Rd. (Lake Kissimmee) off C.R.523, 25 miles south of St. Cloud.

Lake Kissimmee has a national reputation for high quality bass fishing. The 34,948-acre lake is located between Lake Wales and Yeehaw Junction in central Florida just west of the Treasure Coast. In 1996, the FWC revitalized 24 miles of shoreline, resulting in increased numbers of largemouth bass in the lake. Bass spawned in 1997 and 1998 are beginning show up in the lake. These Bass will provide excellent action with many reaching 10 pounds within the next four or five years. Currently, trophy Bass and high catch rates are reported regularly from guides, fish camps and tournament anglers. Bass tournament winners routinely catch a five-fish bag limit weighing 18 to 25 pounds.

Expansive stands of vegetation (maidencane, bulrush, knotgrass) account for excellent catches of Trophy Bass. Slow-trolling golden shiners and flipping plastic baits along, and within, the vegetation are proven techniques, especially during the winter and spring. During the summer and fall, bass are caught offshore with rattling crankbaits, jerkbaits and plastic worms.
Six fish camps, one state park and three public boat ramps are available at Lake Kissimmee. Wade fishing is a popular method used by many anglers and access is provided at some of the fish camps and boat ramps.