8 of the BEST Fishing Spots In & Around the Shreveport - Bossier Area

By Jenny Sites, publisher of Macaroni Kid Fredericksburg, Va. June 10, 2022

Mark your calendars because free fishing days are back. The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries announces its annual Free Fishing Weekend on Saturday, June 11 and Sunday, June 12.

Free fishing weekend provides an opportunity for anglers to fish without a fishing license on any of the state’s public waters. 

This year, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is offering a unique, incentive-based fishing experience with its Virtual Youth Fishing Rodeo, the agency announced via a release.

Did you ever think you could win a fishing derby without paying an entry fee or weighing or measuring a fish? 

Here's your chance! The Southeast Louisiana National Wildlife Refuges and the Friends of Louisiana Refuges Inc. are hosting a Virtual Youth Fishing Rodeo during Louisiana free fishing weekend June 11 -12, 2022.

All youth 15 years of age and younger are eligible to participate for free! Here’s how to join the fun:

1. Youth who are 15 years old or younger fish the location of their choice in Louisiana waters between sunrise and sunset, June 11, and June 12,. A fishing license is not required during Louisiana’s free fishing weekend.

2. Send a photo of the young angler holding their catch to or post to the Southeast Louisiana National Wildlife Refuges Complex FaceBook page @Southeast Louisiana via Facebook messenger. Youngsters should make a sign that says #GetYourFishOn 2022 or #GeauxFish 2022 and display it with their catch. Extra points for artistically decorated creative signs!

4. Have fun fishing!

Photos of anglers and their catch must be received by 4 p.m. Monday June 13.  

Prize winners will be randomly selected from the photos received and will be announced Friday, June 17.

Taking the family fishing is a great way to bond with your children and learn about nature. 

Wait! Don't stop reading: I know what you're thinking. The thought of taking your kids to a body of water and letting them throw a hook around? 

Well, sure, it could be stressful. But if you temper your expectations and plan ahead, you can make it a fun outing they'll remember ... and want to do again and again!

Here are 10 tips to catch some fun while fishing with your kids:

1. Don't worry about casting perfection

It’s very likely — pretty much guaranteed — that a child new to fishing will snag the weeds, a bush, or even a tree... or maybe not even get their fishing lure in the water. The point is that you’re having quality family time together, so don’t take it too seriously — but do make sure to let them know to be careful with hooks!

2. Plan for water safety

Have each child wear a life jacket, even if they are good swimmers and you're on shore. You will likely be distracted helping with rods and bait and might turn your attention away from a child curious about the water.

3. Research first

Do a little research before you choose your fishing hole so you know what’s biting. A good place to ask? Your local bait shop! Also, make sure you find out what type of requirements the area has for fishing licenses. 

4. Go early in the day ... or in the early evening

Typically, fish bite more first thing in the morning or when the weather has cooled in the evening. 

5. Dress appropriately

Be sure to check the weather! And don’t forget the sunscreen and bug spray!

6. Pack snacks and drinks

This is pretty much a given for any trip with kids. Pro mama tip: Always pack more than you think you'll need.

7. Plan a short trip

The first few times you go, plan to stay only a short amount of time — especially if your kids are younger. The kids will remember that they had fun with you — catching a fish is just a bonus!

8. Use a pole made for a child

While you might think that you’ll be the one baiting and casting, you will also be handing the rod over to your child. Find a simple rod that isn't too big and isn't complicated so they feel like they have full control.

9. Use simple bait

A basic nightcrawler and bobber should do the trick! Use a big enough bobber that it's easy for the kids to keep an eye on it so they know when they have a pull on their line!

10. Take your camera

If they catch a fish, you’re sure to want to catch that grin!.


Licenses and Permits

Barron's Landing & Marina

They offer a full service marina - boat stall rentals, jon boat rentals, gasoline, convenience store, live bait and fishing tackle, public restrooms.

Earl G. Williamson Park (Caddo Parish Park)

This Oil City area park offers boat ramp, covered picnic sites, fishing pier and more.

Ford Park
This area features a boat launch, tennis court, park and more.

Melvin's Landing
They offer boat slips rental, store, ballroom and more.

Municipal Pier & Boat Launch

Fishing, boat launch & pier.

Richard Fleming Park
Here, you will find a boat ramp, fishing pier, dock, and more.


Toledo Bend

This mammoth body of water is the 2nd largest man made reservoir in the U.S. covering 185,000 acres on the Texas/Louisiana border. Twice named the #1 Best Bass Fishing Lake in America by Bassmaster

Caddo Lake

American Indian folklore claims this Louisiana/Texas bordering lake was created by an earthquake hundreds of years ago. Boasting incredible scenery of cypress trees, bald eagles and waterfowl, this lake has produced its share of huge double digit sized bass.

Lake O' The Pines

According to Wkipedia, Lake O’ the Pines (formerly known as "Ferrell's Bridge Reservoir") was created by the construction of the Ferrells Bridge Dam on the Big Cypress Bayou. The reservoir was created as part of the overall plan for flood control in the Red River Basin below Denison Dam in Oklahoma.

Lake Bistineau

According to, Lake Bistineau dates back over 200 years. It began in 1800 when several thousand acres of land were flooded due to a gigantic log jam in the Red River. Gradually, however, as the area was dredged, the lake began to drain. Then in 1935, a permanent dam was built across Loggy Bayou,creating the present-day Lake Bistineau. Scattered with vast expanses of cypress trees, this is one of several lakes in the area to have hosted a BASS Professional bass angler's tournament.

Lake Murvaul

According to Texas Parks and Wildlife, Lake Murvaul, just outside of Carthage, Texas, impounded in 1958, has a surface area just under 3,400 acres. With fantastic aquatic vegetation, visiting anglers have the chance to boat one of the largest bass of their life, with scores of fish in the 10+ pound range

Grand Bayou

One of the newest bodies of water in the area, having filled up in 1996, Grand Bayou in Red River Parish has quickly become a favorite to scores of local bass anglers, Relatively a small body of water, at 2,700 acres, the lake features some of the deepest water in the area, so bass anglers very versed in electronics fare much better than others more inclined to fish the banks.

Cross Lake

From, we learn: Cross Lake is an 8575-acre man-made lake built in 1926 that is around 13.4 square miles. The lake is the primary water source for the City of Shreveport. This body of water several years ago, might have been ranked as high as #3 in the area, and even though it still boasts an incredible amount of bass, they've become harder to catch for the novice angler.

Lake Claiborne

Known more in the area for it's water sports like skiing and jet ski riding, Lake Claiborne is still one heck of a fishery. Arguably one of the top 3 crappie fishing lakes in the area, Claiborne, just outside of Homer, LA, comes in at #8 on our list for bass fishing.

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