Acres Of Water & Miles Of Shoreline
11,954 acres and 170 miles of shoreline
Located on the West Fork of the Trinity River, Lake Bridgeport Texas is a moderately sized lake at 11,954 acres, 20 miles long, and 170 miles of shoreline. The maximum depth of the lake is 85 feet and the water is fairly clear thanks to the rocky shoreline and bottom.
The shoreline is rolling tree-lined hills around the majority of the lake and flatter at the south end of the lake. On the north end, you'll find some great coves, smooth water, and beautiful homes. The main body of the lake can get rough if it's windy.
Lake Bridgeport offers good fishing, smooth areas for skiing, boarding, or tubing, and some coves to drop an anchor and swim. It doesn't seem like Lake Bridgeport is very well known, and as such it's not real crowded with boat traffic like some of the other metroplex lakes.
Lake Bridgeport was built in 1929 to prevent future flooding of Forth Worth as well as to give farmers and locals an opportunity to earn some money during the Great Depression. The lake was completed in 1932.
Lake Bridgeport is an hour from DFW airport and about 40 miles north of Fort Worth.
A Typical Texas Outsider Day
The main part of the lake can get rough, so we spent most of our boating time on the northwest end of the lake. This end of the lake has two narrow arms where the creeks and West Fork of the Trinity River have carved their way through the rolling hills. We'll typically find some water for skiing, boarding or tubing and then pick a cove to drop an anchor and swim.
The shoreline at the north end of Lake Bridgeport has several large beautiful homes and as such its good for cruising. Steele Island is the place to drop an anchor and party with the other boaters.
If the wind is not blowing too hard we'll cruise along the east shoreline and head down to One Stop of Texas for a good burger.
And time permitting, on the way to the lake or before heading home, we will play 18 holes of golf at The Club at Runaway Bay at the south end of the lake. Not a bad track - some fun holes, very scenic with views of the lake, and a good value. Read our review of The Club at Runaway Bay to learn more.
Other Cool Things To Do:
Other than cruise, ski/board/tube, swim, or fish we didn't find a lot of other things to do on the lake. No bars or fancy marinas and only one boat-up-to restaurant which is 1 Stop of Texas - they have a restaurant, bait, beer, and wine to go, fresh cut steaks, kayak rentals, and more. Unfortunately, we didn't have time to thoroughly explore the lower half of the lake by boat - so we may have missed something. Let us know if we did - thanks.
What To Do If No Boat:
If you don't have a boat and want to get out on the water, North Side Marina rents pontoon boats, kayaks, canoes, and paddle boats. If you are staying at Lakeview Lodge on Sid Richardson Boy Scout Ranch, they have boat rentals available for guests. See our Lake Bridgeport Boat Rental page for more information.
Within a few miles of Lake Bridgeport you'll find a couple golf courses, some tennis courts, baseball fields, some okay restaurants, a couple parks, and a city swimming pool.
Lake Bridgeport is home to the Bridgeport Camp and Conference Center which has lodging, a pool, athletic field, challenge course, and more. This is a summer camp and during off season it's available for retreats, reunions, and other events
Sid Richardson Boy Scout Ranch has 16 miles of shoreline on a beautiful peninsula that juts into the lake. The Lakeview Lodge Retreat and Conference Center is available for rent and they offer a wide variety of activities including hiking and biking trails; boat, kayak, canoe, and sailboat rentals; zip line and challenge course; and lots more.
Restaurants, Bars, & Music:
Out of luck here. The only boat-up-to restaurant that we know of is One Stop of Texas at the south end of the lake on the other side of highway 380. We hear that they have a good hamburger.
Wake Boarding & Skiing:
The northwest end of the lake is the best place to board, ski, or tube - the West Fork Trinity River arm and the Big Creek Slough are well protected and you shouldn't have any problem finding some smooth water.
See our Lake Bridgeport Lake Map to find any these forks for water activities.
Fishing Regulations -- Most fishes are currently managed under statewide regulations. The exception is largemouth bass, which has a 14-18-inch slot length limit. Only largemouth bass 14 inches long and less or 18 inches long and longer may be retained. Daily bag limit for all black bass species is 5 in any combination; for example, 3 largemouth bass and 2 small mouth bass, or 1 largemouth bass, 3 spotted bass, and 1 small mouth bass.
Fishing Cover/Structure -- Most of Lake Bridgeport's 170-mile shoreline is good bass habitat, with 7 miles of rip-rap, 90 miles of boulders, and many coves and points. Near the Lakeview Lodge on the Sid Richardson Scout Ranch, near Windy Point, Captain Kidd Point, and Steele Island, there are submerged gravel piles that were deposited when the West Fork Trinity River flowed free and uncontrolled. These piles provide excellent habitat for white bass and black bass.
Tips & Techniques
Crappie are caught most often when the fish school around structure in deep water in the winter and in the spring when they come into shallow water to spawn. Many main-lake points, ledges, and channels provide excellent wintertime habitat. In spring, two of the best spots for crappie are Bean Creek and Big Creek. Fish year round with minnows or jigs. Channel catfish are best in the spring when tributaries are running, and again in summer when the fish concentrate atop submerged flats and can be drift-fished with shrimp or cut bait. Similar baits pay off during in flow during the spring and summer.
White bass fishing is best during the spring spawning run. All main-lake points and any in flowing tributaries are good producers. In summer you are likely to see white bass anywhere: in front of the dam, near Rattlesnake Island in open water, and around submerged gravel piles. Best baits here are surface lures, plastic shad, small spoons, jigs, and live minnows or shad. Hybrid striped bass are attracted to similar locations and baits. In winter, hybrids can usually be found feeding on shad and drawing the attention of hundreds of sea gulls.
Black bass in this lake include largemouth, spotted, and small mouth bass. They can be caught almost year round, but spring and fall are tops for action. For trophies, try fishing in February and March. Effective baits in spring include a Carolina Rig worm or 6-inch lizard, a Texas rigged worm (7-inch variety), and crank baits. On into summer, jig and pig, spoons, Texas rigged worms, and crank baits work well. In fall, try crawfish-mimicking baits, spinners, and jigs in turbid and shallow water. Roll a spinner bait, bump a crank bait, or dabble a Texas rigged worm over one of the submerged gravel humps and you better be holding on to something solid.
Our thanks to Texas Parks and Wildlife for the above information.
|Hybrid Striped Bass|
*Courtesy of Texas Parks and Wildlife
Camping, Waterfront Lodging, and Day Use Parks
If you want to camp, you've got a couple choices - North Side Resort and Marina has 7 full hook-up sites and Wise County Park has RV and tent sites.
Ramps & Marinas
There are five public ramps around the lake - use our Lake Bridgeport Lake Map to find them.
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*Fishing information was provided with permission of the Texas Parks and Wildlife (www.tpwd.state.tx.us) in 2006. Texas Parks and Wildlife does not endorse Texas Outside or information presented on texasoutside.com. ©Copyright Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.