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South Carolina Bass Fishing Guide – Best Spots

Mark Armstrong
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Finding South Carolina bass can be pretty easy when you know where to look. South Carolina is home to several species of bass, with some species, such as white bass having been introduced for fishing purposes.

The state is home to a large number of lakes and rivers, which can make deciding where to go fishing a little tricky. But we’ve narrowed it down to some of the best spots to help make it a little easier.

South Carolina Bass Fishing Guide – Best Spots - PinterestPin

Why South Carolina?

Plenty Of Fish

South Carolina has an abundance of lakes and rivers that can offer year round bass fishing. The Palmetto State also has a beautiful Atlantic coastline where you can enjoy some great saltwater fishing for various species, like snapper, bluefish, red drum and black sea bass.

While there are plenty of bass to be found across the state, the largemouth bass is probably the most popular freshwater sport fish in South Carolina. However, there are many waters around the state that can offer excellent opportunities to catch striped bass, which is the state fish of South Carolina.

Year Round Fishing

South Carolina has a subtropical climate, meaning it has hot, humid summers and mild winters. This can make for some great winter fishing conditions, with chances to catch bass all year long.

The state is also home to 47 state parks, many of which offer fantastic fishing opportunities, as well as a chance to set up camp for the night or simply enjoy the wild surroundings.

Some of the state parks that have fishing areas also have stores where you can buy a fishing license, which you’ll need before you can fish anywhere in South Carolina. You may even find that some SC state parks benefit from the Fishing Tackle Loaner Program, where you can borrow fishing rods and reels on site to use while you’re in the park.

Outdoor Recreation

It’s not just the fishing that’s good in South Carolina, there is a whole range of outdoor recreation to keep you and your family entertained before or after your fishing trip. From kayaking and whitewater rafting to hiking, biking and camping, there are plenty of activities to keep you occupied, surrounded by beautiful scenery.

Kayaking in South Carolina

5 Of The Best South Carolina Bass Fishing Locations

1. Lake Monticello

Lake Monticello is a 7,000 acre reservoir located a few miles north of Columbia and can be a great place to catch largemouth bass and white bass, as well as catfish and crappie.

The lake is also home to smallmouth bass and could be a particularly good spot to target both smallmouth and largemouth bass during the winter.

There are several boat ramps around the lake, as well as areas where you can fish from the bank or from a pier. Lake Monticello Park, on the eastern shores of the lake, can be a good spot if you don’t have a boat, as there is a large fishing pier and areas for bank fishing.

2: Lake Murray

Fishing In Lake Murray, SCPin
Courtesy: Jelene Morris on Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Just a short drive northwest of Columbia, Lake Murray covers 50,000 acres and offers fantastic bass fishing. The lake can be a particularly good spot for finding striped bass.

There are lots of boat ramps and marinas dotted around the lake, which makes it an ideal location if you plan to take your own vessel. Dreher Island State Park, on the northern side of the lake, can also be a good spot to fish, with campsites and fishing tournament shelters that can be rented out.

3: Lake Jocassee

Fishing In Lake Jocassee, South CarolinaPin
Courtesy: Sabrina Setaro on Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Lake Jocassee lies northwest of Greenville, close to the North Carolina border. It is a 7,500 acre lake that is known for its good quality smallmouth bass fishing, as well as its trophy trout. The South Carolina state record smallmouth bass and spotted bass have been caught in Lake Jocassee.

The deep lake has very clear water and is also home largemouth bass, white bass and several other species. The creeks and streams that surround the lake can be popular for fly fishing for both bass and trout.

Devils Fork State Park, on the lake’s southern shores, boasts having the only public access point to the lake, with four boat ramps, as well as kayak and canoe rentals on site.

4: Lake Moultrie

Lake Moultrie, South CarolinaPin
Courtesy: James Willamor on Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Lake Moultrie can be found just a short distance north of Charleston. Striped bass are a popular catch at Lake Moultrie but there are also largemouth bass, white bass and plenty of others. The lake is also known for its catfish and holds the state record for channel catfish.

The lake has lots of vegetation, stumps and cypress trees, which can provide good cover and structure for bass, as well as open water. There are several boat ramps and access points around the lake where you can launch a vessel. For shore fishing there is the Frank L. Day Fishing Pier on the western shores of the lake.

5: Lake Greenwood

Lake Greenwood is an 11,400 acre lake that lies between Columbia and Greenville. It’s known for its excellent year round bass fishing as well as relaxing scenery. Other species include crappie, perch and catfish. There are a number of boat ramps and launches dotted around the lake, making water access easy.

If you don’t want to take a boat out, try bank fishing at Lake Greenwood State Park, which has a fishing pier, as well as boat ramps. The area around Buzzard Roost Dam on the south side of the lake can be a good spot to look for striped bass if you have a boat.

Lake Greenwood plays host to several fishing tournaments throughout the year, which helps to boost the lake’s popularity but can mean it can be busy during weekends and holidays. However, bass are stocked in the lake to help improve and replenish fish numbers.

Video: Striper Stocking At Lake Greenwood

Gone Fishin’ (Conclusion)

Whether you’re looking to target largemouth, smallmouth, striped bass, or something else, South Carolina is home to so many great fishing spots, and these are just a few of them.

Maybe you’ve had better luck bass fishing at a lake we didn’t mention? Let us know in the comments and we’d love to hear how you got on if you’ve fished these lakes in the past. But don’t keep this to yourself, share this quick guide with your fellow anglers.

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1 thought on “South Carolina Bass Fishing Guide – Best Spots”

  1. Looking for best largemouth bass fishing lake in SC and guides. Also crappie different trip but same looking for best lake and guides and you help me out on that?


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