If you can’t wait for the federal season to open this summer, red snapper season just kicked off for the year in Texas state waters. The state waters opened up on January 1st allowing you to get back on the water for some bottom fishing. The red snapper fishing in Texas is top notch thanks to an abundance of deep structure within the 9 mile state water boundary. If you are itching to start catching these delicious fish before summer, here are the top five places in Texas to get on the fish before everyone else.
With easy access to the gulf and plenty of nearby structure, Galveston is a top pick for state water red snapper. Galveston has become a popular fishing destination because of its diverse fish species and being only an hour away from Houston. Being in close proximity to the fifth largest metroplex in the U.S. makes Galveston the perfect spot for a day trip to the coast.
Finding water deep enough to hold red snapper inside 9 miles can be tricky for ports on the northern half of the Texas coast but Galveston has plenty of options. There are oil rigs scattered throughout the Gulf and plenty of artificial reefs to the north and south that sit in over 50ft of water. Galveston also has one the largest charter fishing fleets in the state which gives you plenty of boats to choose from when you decide to hit the water.
Port A has incredible fishing in all directions because it’s perfectly located on Mustang Island just off the Texas Coast. The backside of the island has some of the best inshore fishing any angler could ask for but the Gulf side is one of the best jumping off points in the state for offshore fishing. Because Port Aransas is mid-way down the Texas coast, finding deep enough spots that are within 9 miles of the beach is much easier..
The array of oil rigs begins as soon as you leave shore which gives you plenty of places to search for a school of snapper. Port Aransas also has 3 artificial reefs within the 9 mile boundary of state waters and all of them are under 11 miles from the docks. These artificial reefs sit in 50-75 feet of water which is perfect for catching big snapper during cooler months.
Sitting on the southern half of the Texas coast, Corpus Christi is a heavy hitter when it comes to deep sea fishing for red snapper. This is an ideal location that can easily be reached by anglers in other big cities within the state while also offering great fishing opportunities. Getting to prime red snapper spots is only a short boat ride through Corpus Christi Bay to reach the Gulf of Mexico. Once you hit the Gulf, the options are endless with great fishing to the north and south.
The water surrounding Corpus is deep and clear which draws more fish to the area. The red snapper push closer to shore when the water temperatures are cooler and take full advantage of the deeper water. The oil rigs and artificial reefs hold a ton of red snapper near the Texas coast which is great news for state waters. Corpus is one of the best places to jump on a laidback snapper trip and enjoy cooler weather.
This small fishing town has been able to stay under the radar and is one of the best kept secrets of the Texas Coast. Port O’Connor has excellent deep sea fishing opportunities like the other ports on this list but doesn’t make anglers go to a bustling big city to go on a trip. There’s a surprising number of fishing charters in Port O’Connor for its size which makes it easy to pick the best snapper trip for your group.
Located halfway between Freeport and Port Aransas, Port O’Connor is surrounded by exceptional fishing. Heading out to the Gulf is easy with a straight shot through the shipping channel. From there you can target the platforms and reefs for schools of giant red snapper. There is an artificial reef (Matagorda Island-562 Port OConnor) six miles from shore and only 11 miles from Port O’Connor that covers 381 acres of seafloor in 66 feet of water. The reef has been in place for five years and has become one of the most productive fishing spots for popular fish including red snapper, gray snapper, grouper, and more.
Freeport has direct access to the Gulf of Mexico without any inlets or islands to navigate on the way out. While the town is relatively small, the deep sea fishing is a big deal. There are tons of red snapper and many of the most sought after pelagic species which are consistently caught here every year.
Sitting on the northern half of the Texas coast, Freeport has plenty of nearby oil rigs and other underwater structure to choose from. One of the most popular spots to catch red snapper is the George Vancouver Liberty Ship Reef which is just over miles from port. This artificial reef is massive and brings in huge schools of snapper. This reef is in 55 feet of water which is deep for the area and is a natural draw for giant red snapper. With an ideal location and productive waters, Freeport is an amazing spot for anglers of all skill levels to do some bottom fishing.
With red snapper already open for harvest in Texas state waters, anglers are heading out to their favorite spots to pick up where they left off. Being one of the most popular game fish in Texas, there are plenty of guides running trips for red snapper which makes it easy to find the right trip for you. Keep an eye on the fishing reports for all of the red snapper pictures to come pouring in. If you'd rather be in the pictures than look at pictures, jump in and book a trip before the spots fill up.