If you are in the Dallas Fortworth Area in North Texas, Possum Kingdom is a mighty fine place to seek out for a fishing/family vacation. Affectionately called P.K. for short, this massive reservoir on the Brazos River in Palo Pinto County is a favorite haunt for camping and picnics, swimming and water sports, hiking and much more. The lake and its surrounding areas is a part of the Possum Kingdom State Park, managed by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.
History of the lake and its name
Before the building of the Morris Sheppard Dam in 1936-41, the area was full of canyons and hills of the Brazos River Valley. As it supplied a rich source of possum pelts, it was named the Possum Kingdom by a prominent Dallas businessman in the early 1900s. The reservoir and lake created by the dam inherited this name. The remnants of the canyon walls rise from the water, creating magnificent cliff structures called “Devil’s Island” and “Hell’s Gate.”
Common game fish found in the lake
Due to the natural geography of the valley, the Possum Kingdom Lake is unusually deep and has crystal clear waters. The lake is home to at least half a dozen different species of game fish, small and large. You can read more about them in detail at Texas Parks & Wildlife.
The most abundant are the white bass, which is especially plentiful the spring spawning season. The largemouth bass is another good prospect if you want a fish that offers plenty of fight, and can be found all over the lake.
There are two different species of catfish in the lake, with sizable populations of Channel Catfish and Blue Catfish. Since the best spots for them catfish are around Costello Island, you may profit handsomely from looking for some Hell’s Gate boat rental options.
Striped bass, sunfish, and crappies round off the list of fish stocked in Possum Kingdom waters. But the angling opportunities are relatively less for these three, especially the crappie. Their locations tend to fluctuate with the seasons, so you will have to hunt them out.
Best angling spots and boat rentals around Possum Kingdom
The park has a fishing pier and a fish cleaning station for anglers. And if you plan to stick to the shore, you don’t even need a fishing license. The pier, along with the many docks that dot the shore of the lake provide excellent angling spots. The woods also offer many shaded regions with good spots for fishing from the shore.
Boats are the best way to enjoy the complete Possum Kingdom fishing experience. The Bluff Creek Marina provides reliable boat rental on Possum Kingdom Lake. Their Hell’s Gate Watercraft Rentals own a fleet of boats, seadoos, Hobie sailboats and paddleboards, available at very competitive rates. The marina is just 5 minutes away by boat from Hell’s Gate and is located within the Bluff Creek Cove.
The Marina is also an authorized Sea-Doo dealer, as well as can-Am ATVs. Their other services include boat repairing and maintenance, winterization, and summerization. The Marina also provides dry and wet storage, HydroHoist boat lifts and Snag-a-slip booking facilities.