Lake Amistad Area Guide
Officially called International Amistad Reservior, Lake Amistad straddles the Mexican and American border and is one of the largest and most popular lakes in Texas. This gem surrounded by desert has over 850 miles of shoreline and 68,000 acres of sparkling water. Lake Amistad enjoys one of the longest and warmest lake seasons in the country, which makes it an ideal spot for boaters and fisherman. The name “Amistad” comes from the word that means friendship in Spanish. Nothing could be friendlier than long, warm summers with plenty of heat to dry you off after you swim.
Lake Amistad History
Originally named San Felipe del Rio, Del Rio , is steeped in Western history. The area was originally settled in 1635 by Spanish missionaries and since has seen Indian attacks, the coming of the railroads, the Cuban Missile Crisis, as well as a great deal more. The San Felipe Springs are one of the largest continually fed springs in Texas and has always been a favorite watering hole. The springs were named for the King of Spain in 1675. In 1869, the springs were harnessed by ranchers with an elaborate canal and irrigation system that to this day remains the major water supply for Del Rio. The springs and the San Felipe Creek provide swimming and recreation to all visitors and locals.
Lake Amistad National Recreation Area
Lake Amistad National Recreation Area offers something for everyone, whether it is snorkeling, scuba diving, the best bass fishing in the world, or one of the largest collections of archaeological sites anywhere. The area also offers over 400 Indian archeological sites, including caves, rock shelters, mounds, and pictographs for you to explore.
The lake has a limestone rock bottom, instead of mud, which allows visitors to have an unmatched clarity in this calm, aqua-blue water. The lake is fed by two gushing underwater springs, the Indian Springs and the Good Enough Springs, which add over 2 million gallons of spring water to the lake every hour.
Some of the best bass fishing can be found right here at Lake Amistad. The lake was considered under-fished for many years and with the recent increase in catch-and-release fishing, the lake continues to have many excellent stocks of America’s most popular game fish: Large Mouth Bass, Striped Bass, Crappie, and even the popular Sunfish. With all this excellent fishing, people come from all over to participate in the variety of fishing tournaments held year round.
Another popular pastime at Lake Amistad is houseboating, which is the perfect vacation with friends and family. The lake offers over 850 miles of shoreline, with more private coves and canyons than one could ever possibly explore and sheer cliff walls dotted with ancient caves for exploring. Fossil markings dating back more than 360 million years await your discovery. The Lake Amistad Marina rents fishing boats, deck cruisers, and ski boats for a reasonable price that should keep any lake enthusiast happy. Lake Amistad is one of the finest family destinations in the country and it is waiting for your discovery.