Lake Texoma Striper Fishing Blog

Lake Texoma Fishing Report :: Lake Season Is Here

Posted on May 23, 2021

  Ahh, the Lake Season is upon us, that space between Memorial Day and Labor Day when school is out of session, the weather is hot, and everyone wants do do all things water related. According to the U.S. Army Corps. Of Engineers, Lake Texoma hosts around 6 million visitors every year and a good number of those visitors will come within this 3 month period. As a result, any fishing guide worth his salt will be able to book as many days as he wants to fish. This is indeed our busy season, the time when when we fill up our winter reserves so we can hibernate the next time Mother Nature tries to freeze the lake over again. Don't expect to come down on vacation and find a fishing guide available the next day to take you fishing, you may luck out and someone has a cancellation but it is best not to count on luck. It is better to research a guide whom you will relate to, operates a good service, and will catch you fish. To book with these guides, you will need to book at least a month in advance, perhaps further if you insist on fishing on a Saturday, which by the way, is often the worst fishing day of the week due to the increased boat traffic and pressure on the fish. Luckily, even with increased traffic and pressure on the fish, the fishing is still awesome right now, even on a Saturday.

Right now, as far as the fishing patterns go, this is bait season. Sure you can still catch a lot of fish on lures but the conditions have to be right and catching fish on lures has become less reliable, but using bait right now is about as good as it gets. When your on fish and you get them worked into a frenzy, once you drop your bait down, you will only have to wait but a couple of seconds before you hook into another fish. When this happens, it only takes about 30-45 minutes to put your limit of fish in the boat. You have to be careful though, if you get the wrong guide, that's the end of your trip, 45 minutes on the water and your back at the dock cleaning fish at 7:30, of course some people are looking for that quick limit but most folks want to stay out on the water and enjoy the morning. I always make sure we are out a minimum of 4 hours on the water, and most other guides will as well, so I always ask my clients when we are nearing the limit if they want to catch and release. If so, I will stop keeping fish a few fish shy of the limit so we can keep any fish that is mortally wounded by the hook. We use circle hooks to prevent this but it still happens. On Texoma you are allowed to keep 10 fish per person with only 2 of those 10 being over 20”, these larger fish we call “overs.” Here lately, it seems everywhere I go most of what we catch are overs. Yesterday we had to catch 3 times our limit of fish just to sort through the big fish to get enough of the small ones to fill out our limit. So it may take a little longer than 45 minutes to put a limit of fish in the boat, I could think of worse problems to have though.

By the end of June, first of July, lure fishing will start picking back up and we will move into slab and topwater season. As the shad spawn hatch out, the fish will congregate in large schools and chase the bait across the lake as they feed, they are moving fast in this pattern so even though they are still feeding on bait and will hit it as soon as you get it down, the school moves by quickly so you may only have the opportunity to catch one fish a piece before having to move the boat in front of the school again. As a result, to improve the quickness of getting hooks down in front of the fish, many guides will switch over to slabs and topwaters to catch fish. This is a fun and exciting way to fish and often you can get into some big fish fishing this way.

Striper is an excellent fish to eat, my preferred of all the fish in the lake except for possible flat head catfish, but it is important to prepare it properly. After your trip all of the guides will clean your fish for you but make sure you find one that will remove the red meat, which is the lateral line of the fish. In stripers, being an open water predator, it is more prominent than other species as it is an organ which senses minute vibrations in the water, allowing them to find bait shoals in the open water. The red meat is a tougher part of the meat which contains more blood vessels and nerves and has a stronger flavor then the rest of the fish. Most guides will pull it out for you but some will not so be sure to ask when looking for a guide. Once you get your fish home, it is best to soak it in a brine of salt and sugar (don't skip on the sugar) I use about 3-4 tbs. each of equal parts salt and sugar per gallon of water, any sugar will work. I usually use honey since I'm also a bee keeper and we don't ever buy any cane sugar. It is best to soak them at least 24 hours, though 4 hours will suffice if you are looking to eat fresh fish that evening. They can soak up to 4-5 days before you cook them or you can freeze them in the same brine. Brining the fish will keep the fish moist when cooked and the sugar helps to develop that crispy caramelized crust on the outside and adds a subtle sweetness that improves the flavor. I prefer to blacken it in an iron skillet with extra virgin coconut oil, then make fish tacos with the left overs, its easy and one of the most delicious ways to cook it. It is a very versatile fish though and I enjoy cooking it many different ways. As long as you brine it, you can roll striper sushi, its so good! Striper bisque is excellent, small fish are great fried whole with the skin on, and the heads can be made into fish stock which is extremely healthy and delicious, we use the fish stock to make striper pho, if you've never tried it you're missing out. Of course they're excellent prepared the most popular way too, deep fried with tartar sauce. If all that made you hungry, good, its well known that hunger improves your ability to catch fish.

I operate my guide service a bit differently than anyone else. Other guides will charge you a set rate that ranges between $125-$150/person or higher for 3 or more persons. I have open rates and want you to pay whatever you feel is a fair rate at the end of the day. It doesn't happen often but ocasionally at certain times of the year, you may encounter a slow day of fishing or the trip is cut short due to weather. Since I have limited control of the final service I can deliver I leave it to my clients to decide what is a fair compensation for the service rendered that day according to the conditions. I've been doing business this way for around 9 years or so and I've really enjoyed it. Its not about the money for me anymore, I just enjoy being able to make a living doing something I love to do. I became a fishing guide because I love to fish, though when I started I was money focused and tried to book up as many trips as I could. I soon noticed that being over worked and focused on money I began to loose the joy of fishing. Seeing this I reevaluated and took a step back. Now I make sure to take a day or 2 off every week and I'm no longer worried about how much money I'm making, I'm always provided with everything I need and I still love to fish, and I love what I do for a living and that's worth more than money.
If you choose me as your guide we're going to go out and have a great time catching fish and having fun. You can reserve your trip online at or you can give me a call at (903)815-1609. No matter who you choose though, you will want to reserve soon before all the guides are booked up for the summer. I'll be looking forward to fishing with you.

Your Lake Texoma Fishing Guide,
Brian Prichard
Stripers Inc.