Find Great Fishing in Ohio
Guide to fishing in the Buckeye State
If you like fishing for big walleyes, monster smallmouth bass, big-and-plentiful crappie, the state of Ohio offers you some great fishing opportunities. Big lakes and reservoirs as well as small ponds and streams provide a day on the water (or ice) for some great fishing. Here, we concentrate primarily on the larger lakes and reservoirs in Ohio. The purpose of this page is to share basic information about the best fishing lakes in the state, plus the species found in each lake.
Ohio offers a rich and diverse fishing experience with a wide variety of species available in its warm water lakes, cold water environments, ponds, lakes, and rivers. Anglers in Ohio have the opportunity to target popular game fish such as bass, crappie, walleye, trout, catfish, and panfish.
Warm water lakes in Ohio are known for their vibrant populations of largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, crappie, bluegill, and catfish. These lakes provide excellent angling opportunities throughout the year, with bass tournaments and panfish outings being popular among anglers of all skill levels. The warm water lakes not only offer great fishing but also serve as recreational hubs for boating and other water-based activities.
In contrast, Ohio's cold water environments, particularly Lake Erie and its tributaries, are renowned for their world-class fishing for species such as steelhead trout, walleye, yellow perch, and smallmouth bass. Lake Erie, often referred to as the "Walleye Capital of the World," attracts anglers from far and wide who come to experience the excitement of reeling in trophy-sized walleye or battling steelhead trout during their seasonal migrations.
Ohio's numerous ponds, lakes, and rivers provide additional fishing opportunities. Anglers can explore smaller bodies of water, such as ponds, where they may find an abundance of panfish like bluegill, sunfish, and crappie. These smaller water bodies often provide a more intimate fishing experience and are popular among families and beginners.
Rivers in Ohio, including the Ohio River and its tributaries, offer diverse fishing opportunities for species like catfish, bass, walleye, and sauger. Anglers can enjoy fishing from the riverbanks or explore the waters by boat, taking advantage of the varied habitats and fishing techniques available.
Overall, Ohio's fishing scene is characterized by its wide variety of species and fishing environments. From warm water lakes teeming with bass and panfish to cold water destinations like Lake Erie for walleye and trout, anglers of all levels can find their preferred fishing experience in Ohio's ponds, lakes, and rivers. With its abundant fishing opportunities and beautiful natural surroundings, Ohio is a true haven for fishing enthusiasts.
Here, you can fish for largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, spotted bass, channel catfish, flathead catfish, black crappie, white crappie, walleye, rainbow trout, brown trout, lake trout, bluegill, green sunfish, hybrid sunfish, longear sunfish, pumpkinseed sunfish, redear sunfish, rock bass, warmouth, white bass, white perch, yellow perch, coho salmon, striped bass, hybrid stripers, bowfin, chain pickerel, longnose gar, muskie, northern pike, sauger, saugeye and tiger muskie in local lakes, rivers, ponds and/or streams.
Many of these lakes offer fishing boats for rent.
Major Ohio Lakes & Species
Lake & Fish Chart
This chart shows the major angling destinations, cross referencing these waters with the major species to be found in each lake or impoundment.
For a detailed list of primary fish species in OH, plus state fish records, see the list below.
Fishing lake sizes and locations in the state.
Acton Lake is a 625-acre lake in the southwest part of the state, 2 miles east of College Corner.
Alum Creek Lake is a 3,000-acre lake in the central part of the state, 2 miles north of Westerville.
Atwood Lake is a 1,500-acre lake in the northeast part of the state, at Dellroy.
Bass Lake is a 574-acre lake in the northwest part of the state, 2 miles south of Chardon
Berlin Lake is a 3,300-acre lake in the northeast part of the state, at North Benton.
Buckeye Lake is a 2,800-acre lake in the central part of the state, at Buckeye Lake.
Burr Oak Lake is a 660-acre lake in the southeast part of the state, 1 mile north of Bishopville.
C.J. Brown Reservoir is a 2,019-acre lake in the west-central part of the state, 5 miles northeast of Springfield.
Caesar Creek State Park Lake is a 2,600-acre lake in the southwest part of the state, at Harveysburg.
Charles Mill Lake is a 1,300-acre lake in the north-central part of the state, at Mifflin.
Clear Fork Reservoir is a 1,000-acre lake in the north-central part of the state, at Lexington.
Clendening Reservoir is a 1,800-acre lake in the northeast part of the state, at Tippecanoe.
Cowan Lake is a 690-acre lake in the southwest part of the state, 8 miles southwest of Wilmington.
Deer Creek Lake is a 1,301-acre lake in the central part of the state, at Pancoastburg.
Delaware Lake is a 1,330-acre lake in the central part of the state, 5 miles north of Delaware.
East Fork Lake is a 2,100-acre lake in the southwest part of the state, at Williamsburg.
Findlay Reservoir covers 645 acres in the northwest part of the state, 3 miles southwest of Findlay.
Grand Lake St Marys is a 12,700-acre lake in the northwest part of the state, at Celina and St Marys.
Hoover Reservoir is a 2,800-acre lake in the central part of the state, at Galena.
Indian Lake is a 5,000-acre lake in the northwest part of the state, at Lakeview.
La Due Reservoir is a 1,470-acre lake in the northeast corner of the state, at Auburn Corners.
Lake Erie, with a surface area of 9,940-square miles, borders the northeastern part of the state.
Lake Milton is a 1,700-acre lake in the northeast part of the state, at Diamond.
Leesville Lake is a 1,000-acre lake in the northeast part of the state, 2 miles northeast of Leesville.
Mogadore Reservoir is a 1,104-acre lake in the northeast part of the state, 8 miles east of Akron.
Mosquito Lake is a 6,500-acre lake in the northeast part of the state, at Cortland.
Nimisila Lake is a 742-acre lake in the northeast part of the state, 7 miles west of Greentown.
Paint Creek Lake is a 1,178-acre lake in the south-central part of the state, 4 miles northeast of Rainsboro.
Piedmont Reservoir is a 2,300-acre lake in the east-central part of the state, at Piedmont.
Pleasant Hill Lake is an 850-acre lake in central Ohio, 1 mile southwest of Perrysville.
Pymatuning Lake is a 14,600-acre lake on the eastern border part of the state, at Andover.
Rocky Fork State Park Lake is a 2,000-acre lake in the southwest part of the state, at Hillsboro.
Salt Fork Lake is a 2,900-acre lake in the east-central part of the state, 6 miles north of Cambridge.
Seneca Lake is a 3,500-acre lake in the east-central part of the state, at Senecaville.
Tappan Reservoir is a 2,100-acre lake in the northeast part of the state, 2 miles north of Deersville.
West Branch Lake is a 2,300-acre lake in the northeast part of the state, at Ravenna.
Fish Species & State Records in Ohio
World record: 22 lbs 4 oz
State Record: 13 lbs 2 oz
World record: 11 lbs 15 oz
State Record: 9 lbs 8 oz
World record: 9 lbs 8 oz
State Record: 5 lbs 4 oz
World record: 58 lbs 0 oz
State Record: 37 lbs 10 oz
World record: 123 lbs 9 oz
State Record: 76 lbs 8 oz
World record: 6 lbs 0 oz
State Record: 4 lbs 8 oz
World record: 5 lbs 3 oz
State Record: 3 lbs 14 oz
World record: 25 lbs 0 oz
State Record: 16.19 lbs
World record: 17 lbs 7 oz
State Record: 7.31 lbs
World record: 15 lbs 6 oz
State Record: 14.04 lbs
World record: 42 lbs 2 oz
State Record: 21.3 lbs
World record: 40 lbs 4 oz
State Record: 14.675 lbs
World record: 72 lbs 0 oz
State Record: 26.63 lbs
World record: 4 lbs 12 oz
State Record: 3.28 lbs
World record: 2.2 lbs
State Record: 1.2 lbs
World record: N/A
State Record: 2.03 lbs
World record: 1.75 lbs
State Record: 0.41 lbs
World record: 2 lbs 4 oz
State Record: 1.10 lbs
World record: 5.4 lbs
State Record: 3.58 lbs
World record: 3.0 lbs
State Record: 1.97 lbs
World record: 2.4 lbs
State Record: 1.32 lbs
World record: 6.8 lbs
State Record: 4.0 lbs
World record: 4.6 lbs
State Record: 1.72 lbs
World record: 4 lbs 3 oz
State Record: 2.86 lbs
World record: 33 lbs 7 oz
State Record: 13.63 lbs
World record: 81 lbs 14 oz
State Record: 37 lbs 2 oz
World record: 27 lbs 5 oz
State Record: 18 lbs 4 oz
World record: 21 lbs 8 oz
State Record: 11.69 lbs
World record: 9 lbs 6 oz
State Record: 6.25 lbs
World record: 50 lbs 5 oz
State Record: 25.0 lbs
World record: 69 lbs 9 oz
State Record: 55.13 lbs
World record: 55 lbs 1 oz
State Record: 22.78 lbs
World record: 51 lbs 2 oz
State Record: 31.64 lbs
Click the images and links above for species details.
Visit AA-Boats-Boating.com to find information about fishing boats in Ohio and other boating information.
State of OH Fishing Guides
We are also looking for information on local guides who offer services within Ohio. You can find a listing of OH fishing guides here. If you are a fishing guide in Ohio or know of a good resource, please send us information for consideration.
Fish for big bass
Excellent largemouth, smallmouth and spotted bass fishing opportunities are available to anglers.
Fishing in all states