Deer Point Lake
A 5,000-acre impoundment located 7 miles north of Panama City off US 231 and SR 77 at Southport. Deer Point Lake is fed by natural freshwater streams and supplies more than 760 million gallons of fresh water daily to Panama City and the surrounding areas. The lake can be accessed by taking US 231 north from Panama City (6 miles) to C2321 west (1.5 miles); turn right on C2311 (3.5 miles); the ramp (Highpoint) is on the left. There are also boat ramps located on C2321on either side of the dam. A fishing pier is located near the boat ramp on the west side of the dam. This lake is best known for its shellcracker (Redear Sunfish) fishing during the spring (April through June) using earthworms as live bait. Fly fishing for shellcracker during the spring can also be productive when fishing early morning, late afternoon, and evening. Bream (Bluegill) fishing is also good in the spring using crickets and earthworms. Largemouth Bass fishing is best in the spring to early summer and again in the fall using plastic worms and crankbaits. Broken-back minnow lures are also effective for bass when fished near the shoreline.
Tharp's Camp (off Resota Beach Road, 850-265-2330); 4405 Huckleberry Lane, Panama City, FL 32409.
Be careful when navigating Deer Point, as many logs and debris from Hurricane Michael have dislodged since refill of the lake. Hazards may exist where navigation was previously safe. The southern cut in the upper lake towards Econfina Creek is extremely shallow and it is easy to get a boat stuck on new log jams in this section. Largemouth bass fishing will probably slow down during the heat of the summer. Try fishing in early morning or late afternoon along the weed lines of the old creek channels in Bear, Econfina and Cedar creeks. Try fishing for bass with dark colored artificial worms, live shiners and weedless lures. Fish deep water holes with deep diving crankbaits during the heat of the day. Redear sunfish (shellcracker) will also spread out to deep holes in the lake as their spawning run ends and the summer heats up. Try fishing for redear near the bottom of these holes near structure with worms. Bluegill will continue to spawn throughout the summer and may be found on beds in shallow areas around the lake. Try fishing with worms or crickets when targeting bluegill. Catfish and butter cats (bullhead) can be found in the deep waters by the dam and the main body of the lake. Best baits include chicken livers and worms.
TrophyCatch is FWC's citizen-science program that rewards anglers for documenting and releasing trophy bass 8 pounds or larger. The following TrophyCatch bass have been submitted from Deer Point Lake:
Lunker Club (8 – 9.9 pounds): 2
Trophy Club (10 - 12.9 pounds): 2