Falcon Lake - Bass Fishing Nirvana
Feb. 25, 2008
The FLW Outdoors Texas Division Stren Series opened its 2008 season there in January, and the Bassmaster Elite Series tested its waters in April. With that said, Lake Falcon has likely become the new "favorite bass lake" for many.
Located deeply in South Texas, right along the Texas/Mexico border, Falcon spans 84,000 acres of brush-filled water where the bass grow thick as footballs and as mean as western diamondbacks.
The Lake routinely cranks out five bass limits weighing in excess of 25 pounds, but bags weighing much heavier than that are not uncommon. In many one-day tournaments, 25 pounds won't even land you in the money.
The pre-tournament hype ahead of the Stren event indicated that every bass tournament weight record known to exist could be in jeopardy Had the weather and controlling water authority cooperated, there is a distinct possibility that very thing may have happened.
Unfortunately, cold weather set in the week before the tournament got underway, dropping surface temperatures nearly 10 degrees in some areas. To make matters worse, irrigation demands across the border in Mexico caused water levels to drop as much as six inches per day leading up to the start of the tournament.
Still, despite the unfavorable conditions, the field whacked 'em. To wit:
- Louisiana pro Jeremy Guidry won it with 20 bass totaling 110 pounds, 2 ounces. His catch topped the FLW Outdoors all-time weight record by more than four pounds.
- Meanwhile, co-angler champ Bill Rogers of Jasper, Texas set a new all-time weight record from the back deck with 20 bass weighing 96 pounds, 8 ounces.
- Amazingly, three pros besides Guidry cracked the century mark and five more co-anglers weighed more than 80 pounds through four days of competition.
It took a bass weighing upwards of 12 pounds to earn big bass honors on days one and three, and an 11-pounder on day two. John Bowen of League City, Texas (41st place), was the first pro out of the check cut with 15 bass weighing 62 pounds, 5 ounces. More than 50 pros anglers averaged catching 20-plus pounds before cut day.
Falcon's heavy-hitting demeanor can be attributed to a number factors:
- Location - The lake is situated near Texas' southern-most tip. The warm climate lends itself to mild water temperatures that rarely dip below 55 degrees, which in turn allows the bass to enjoy a year-round growing season.
- Plenty to Eat - The lake is teeming with forage. In addition to crawfish and shad, the lake has an abundant population of tilapia, a high-protein fish targeted by commercial netters on the Mexico side.
- Light Fishing Pressure - The lake's remote location deters fishing traffic. The closest metropolitan area is San Antonio, about three hours away.
- New Water: This is a biggy - Falcon was built in 1954. These days it is fishing like it’s brand new. Here's why:
- Prolonged drought and steady irrigation demands in Mexico caused the lake to drop beyond 50 feet below conservation pool between 1993 and 2001. The low water spurred the growth of thick brush on thousands of acres of rolling hills, flats, humps and points -- classic bass habitat that needed only one thing to make it click: Water, and lots of it.
- The rains came in 2003 and raised the water level nearly 40 feet (about nine feet shy of full pool) within 12-14 months. The water level fell to about 30 feet below normal last year, but has since rebounded to about nine feet below full pool.
- Florida Bass: Between 2003-05 the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department supplemented the fishery with nearly two million Florida strain fingerlings. Additionally, the lake received 185 surplus brood bass dismissed from TPWD hatchery duties. Falcon anglers have been experiencing bass fishing nirvana ever since.
For more information about fishing the lake or guide trips contact:
- Charlie Haralson - 956-744-6235
- Speedy Collett - 956-236-9717