Lake JacksonLeon County

Located just north of Tallahassee, this 4,000-acre lake has been nationally known for its largemouth bass fishery. The best bass fishing time of year is the spring through early summer (February through May). This lake has a high diversity of aquatic vegetation, but hydrilla, eelgrass, and maidencane are the best habitats to fish for bass in this lake. This lake is shallow with an average depth of about 7 feet and a maximum depth of 30 feet. After May, fishing at night becomes the norm to get away from the hot weather conditions. It is a natural sink-hole lake that periodically goes dry (about every 25 years. See an excellent article from about the history of the lake and restoration efforts. There are 5 public boat ramps around the lake and one fish camp. For additional information you may contact Red and Sam's Fish Camp at 850-562-3083.

Attention Lake Jackson Anglers:

SPECIAL REGULATION (Effective as of September 9, 2013):  Black bass bag limit is five, only one of which may be greater than 16 inches in total length.

This regulation applies to Lake Jackson proper, including Little Lake Jackson west of Highway 27, Meginnis arm of Lake Jackson north of Interstate 10, and Fords Arm of Lake Jackson west of Meridian road.

The special regulation for Lake Jackson was misprinted in the new 2014-2015 freshwater fishing regulations and is incorrect.  You do not have to release largemouth bass below 16 inches in length.  There is not a 12 inch minimum size limit for largemouth bass.  (See below for further information.)


Fishhound External Website also offers a fishing forecast for Lake Jackson External Website .

 Current Forecast:

The water level on Lake Jackson is still adequate.  The daily thunderstorms throughout much of the late summer have kept water in the lake.  Anglers should be able to launch at most landings.  Fishing for bream and shellcrackers should be good this quarter with wigglers and crickets.  Try topwater baits for largemouth bass early in the morning and late in the evening.  Be courteous to our recreational alligator hunters that should be present throughout much of the quarter.

Please note the current bass regulation on Lake Jackson: anglers are allowed no more than 5 bass per day, only one of which may be greater than 16 inches. 

Largemouth bass less than 16 inches in length may be kept.  There is NOT a 12 inch minimum on Lake Jackson.  As an example, an angler could legally keep 5 bass of the following sizes in one day of fishing: 1 8-inch bass, 1 10-inch bass, 1-12 inch bass, 1-14 inch bass, and 1 18-inch bass. If there are questions regarding this regulation, please call the Northwest regional office at 850-265-3676.

FWC Facts:
Sunshine bass are bred at FWC hatcheries by crossing white bass with striped bass. Approximately 1 million sunshine bass are stocked in Florida each year.

Learn More at AskFWC