PO Box 835
Canyon, Texas 79015
Charlie Munger, Biologist
- Spearman Chamber of Commerce
PO Box 161
Spearman, Texas 79081
Palo Duro Reservoir
This area is experiencing a drought which may affect fishing and boat ramp access. Before you go, check the current lake level or contact the controlling authority for current conditions.
Current Lake Level
Conservation Pool Elevation: 2,892 ft. msl
Fluctuation: Severe, 4-10 feet annually
Normal Clarity: Turbid, visibility 1-2 feet
Reservoir Controlling Authority
PO Box 99
Spearman, Texas 79081
Scattered stands of native emergent vegetation and stands of flooded timber
Predominant Fish Species
A general information map is available from the Palo Duro River Authority (806) 882-4401.
All fishes are currently managed under statewide regulations. For walleye, this means a five fish daily bag limit, and only two of those fish can be under 16 inches in length.
Walleye are regularly stocked in Palo Duro Reservoir, and crappie are abundant. Fishing for largemouth bass can be a challenge, as water levels fluctuate dramatically.
The reservoir has extensive areas of flooded timber and flooded brush, and some areas of aquatic vegetation.
Spring and summer are the best times of year for largemouth bass. Water levels can and do fluctuate dramatically. The reservoir is relatively new and has turbid water, especially in the upper end. Spinnerbaits and suspending baits are good options. Diving baits that have a lot of action and bump the bottom will attract strikes when visibility is poor. Carolina-rigged worms and crawdad imitations are good year-round baits. The peak period for walleye fishing is from April through June. Over 90% of the walleye harvested are caught during this period. The key to successful walleye fishing is to use small tackle and fish slowly. You will be most successful with 6-pound test line or smaller. Walleye can be caught on crankbaits and spinners, but the most successful method is drift fishing minnows or nightcrawlers on a small jig head. Drift-fish your jig in about 15 feet of water along the shoreline, focusing mainly on rock outcrops and drop-offs. The abundant stands of trees and the old road bridge structure in the upper lake are good areas to look for crappie. Fish jigs vertically or use minnows as close to structure as possible.