TPWD District Fisheries Office

505 Staples Road
San Marcos, Texas 78666
(512) 353-0072
Patrick Ireland, Biologist

About the Area

Local Information

Nearby State Parks


Walter E. Long Lake

Quick Links: Fishing Regulations | Angling Opportunities | Cover & Structure | Tips & Tactics

BOATER ADVISORY: Zebra mussels have invaded this reservoir! CLEAN, DRAIN AND DRY your boat, trailer, livewells/bait buckets, and other gear before traveling to another water body. Draining water is required by law and possession and transport of zebra mussels is illegal.

Lake Characteristics

Location: Travis County, just east of the City of Austin; also known as Decker Lake
Surface area: 1,269 acres
Maximum depth: 60 feet
Impounded: 1967

Water Conditions

Normal water level: 555 ft. msl
Fluctuation: Nearly constant level
Normal Clarity: Clear to slightly stained

Reservoir Controlling Authority

City of Austin
124 W. 8th
Austin, Texas 78701
(512) 974-6700

Aquatic Vegetation

Hydrilla, pondweed species, bulrush, coontail, and southern naiad

Predominant Fish Species

Lake Records
Current Fishing Report
Stocking History
Latest Survey Report

Lake Maps

No known lake contour map exists.

Fishing Regulations

This reservoir has special regulations on some fishes. See bag and size limits for this lake.

Angling Opportunities

Walter E. Long Reservoir contains excellent populations of largemouth bass and hybrid striped bass.  Largemouth bass in the 8-10 pound range are commonly caught, but the reservoir is primarily noted for producing good numbers of slot sized (14-21 inch) bass. Hybrid striped bass are stocked annually, and fish larger than 5 pounds are prevalent. Channel and flathead catfish are present in low numbers. This reservoir has a good population of bluegill and redbreast sunfish. Many of these sunfish are more than 8 inches in length.

Species Poor Fair Good Excellent
Largemouth Bass       yes
Catfish     yes  
Crappie yes      
Hybrid Striped Bass     yes  
Sunfish     yes  
Fishing Cover/Structure

This power-plant cooling lake has an abundance of bulrush along the periphery. During some years there is also an abundance of submerged aquatic vegetation (most commonly hydrilla and pondweed species). Because most of the shoreline is owned by the City of Austin, no private boat docks/houses appear along the water's edge, but there are distinct creek channels, dropoffs, and submerged tank dams in parts of the reservoir. The water remains warm during the winter if the power plant is generating. Part of the discharge canal is open to fishing from a boat.

Tips & Tactics

Largemouth bass anglers should concentrate their efforts along the edges of submerged aquatic vegetation and in the bulrush that lines the perimeter of the reservoir.  Try pitching/flipping plastic worms and jigs into the bulrush.  Topwater baits can also be productive early and late in the day along the edge of the bulrush.  If the submerged aquatic vegetation is abundant, lipless crankbaits cranked over the top of the grass can be effective.  Other popular artificial lures include Carolina-rigged soft plastics and jerkbaits.  For live bait fishing try minnows suspended under corks along the bulrush and weedlines. 

For hybrid striped bass, live shad fished suspended in the water column or on the bottom can be very effective. Downrigging with bucktail jigs and using jigging spoons also can be effective. During the heat of the summer, look for largemouth bass and hybrid striped bass schooling as they chase shad.  Small topwater lures and leadhead curly tail grubs are effective for both species when they are schooling. 

Channel catfish can be caught using stinkbait or cutbait, whereas flathead catfish prefer live bait. Sunfish can be caught using meal worms, crickets, and earthworm pieces fished under floats in and around bulrushes and submerged vegetation. During summer, these fish can be seen and caught on their shallow water spawning beds.