Lochloosa Lake (5700 acres) is designated as a Fish Management Area and located 5 miles south of Hawthorne near the town of Lochloosa. Most of the shoreline is bordered by old-growth cypress trees, and knotgrass and spatterdock (bonnets) are the predominant aquatic plants in the lake. A public boat ramp provides access to the lake from U.S. Highway 301 in the town of Lochloosa, and at Lochloosa Harbor Fish Camp just north of the town of Lochloosa, also accessed from U.S. 301. In addition, a public pier is located south of the town of Lochloosa on Burnt Island and is a popular fishing site for those without a boat. Lochloosa Lake offers good bluegill, redear sunfish and warmouth (bream) fishing during April through September; however, some bream can be caught year-round. Anglers targeting bream should fish with grass shrimp in deep-water spatterdock or deeper grass patches. Black crappie fishing is best from January through April in the spatterdock with grass shrimp and minnows. During summer and fall, crappie anglers should drift open water with grass shrimp and minnows.
For more and updated information please call:
Lochloosa Harbor Fish Camp 352-481-2114
Gary's Tackle Box 352-372-1791
Lochloosa continues to be the most consistent destination for anglers targeting black crappie, and the fishing during February and March proved to be some of the best relative to other nearby lakes. As the black crappie spawn winds down through March, crappie will return to open water where live minnows and artificial jigs are baits of choice. But that’s also when the bream fishing starts to heat up, which is usually best during the warmer months of May and June. There have already been reports of anglers hauling in nice creels of large shellcrackers from the pads at Lochloosa. Bluegill and redear sunfish will be bedding in the shallows throughout the lake, but the grasses on the east shore and Burnt Island, and in the pads at south end of the lake that are still submersed are good places to try. Use grass shrimp for best results.