By way of description, one could say that Lake Cypress Springs is an East Texas gem. In fact, that is exactly how many who frequent the lake describe it. Located in the Texas Piney Woods of Franklin County, this is a 7-mile-long spring-fed lake situated among the towns of Winnsboro, Pittsburg, and Mt. Pleasant, Texas. The gorgeous 3,461-acre reservoir is located just eight miles southeast of Mount Vernon, and Lake Cypress Springs offers excellent fishing, as well as plenty of space for most other water sports, in addition to family-friendly picnic areas and campgrounds.
Perhaps one of the best aspects about Lake Cypress Springs is that it features a near-constant water temperature of 72 degrees. In addition to the myriad underground springs that feed the lake, it is also fed by Big Cypress Creek. What has made Lake Cypress Springs such a haven for anglers and watersports and outdoor enthusiasts in general very well could be the decision to clear the lake of timber and brush, as a way to promote all sorts of recreational activities.
A Great Place to Enjoy Fishing and Life
Some portions of Lake Cypress Springs have been zoned designated for nothing but fishing, which is why most anglers will usually find abundant stocks of largemouth bass, walleye, spotted bass, white bass, crappie, channel catfish and bluegill, among others. Largemouth bass is a particular favorite of the lake’s anglers, possibly because the record for that species of fish stands at 10.38 pounds.
The lake is very popular for boating because it stretches for seven miles and measures approximately two and a half miles at its widest point, with a maximum depth of 56 feet. That makes the lake an excellent place for more than boating and fishing, but also for waterskiing and swimming. Adjacent to Lake Cypress Springs, on the other side of the Lake Cypress Springs Dam, anglers can find extra fishing at Lake Bob Sandlin which offers an additional 9,400 acres of water, as well as the surrounding 640-acre Bob Sandlin State Park.
In addition to those offerings nearby, Lake Cypress Springs is itself is surrounded by five public parks offering numerous amenities, including beaches, camping, RV parks, hiking trails, picnic facilities and public access to swimming in the lake’s comfortable, crystal clear water, as well as marinas offering everything the boater or fisherman might need. There are homes on the lake, but most of them are weekend second homes for people who live in Franklin, Collin, and Dallas counties, although the 44.5 miles of wooded shoreline around Lake Cypress Springs features plenty of private homes and other real estate for sale or rent. Golfers can even take in the beautiful 9-hole golf course at the Cypress Creek Country Club, which is nestled among the pines and the rolling hills.
Where to Fish at Lake Cypress Springs
Access to the best fishing on the lake is primarily available from five public parks, all operated by the Franklin County Water District. They are all available for $2 per person per day or via an annual pass, although many report no cash drop box and no one manning the entrance, so they apparently use an “honor system.”
- Jack Guthrie Park is located at the north end of the dam, off I-30 in Mount Vernon. This location features a concrete boat ramp that is capable of handling boats of all sizes. There are courtesy docks, RV spaces with water and electrical hook-ups, restrooms with shower facilities, dump stations, picnic areas with charcoal grills, a swimming beach, and basketball, tennis and volleyball courts.
- Dogwood Park is located at the south end of the dam. It is equipped with a concrete boat ramp, capable of handling boats of all sizes, restrooms and a fishing dock. There are also accommodations for swimming, a 10-acre camping ground, picnic areas, including tables and charcoal grills, and restroom facilities.
- Mary King Park is located on the south shore at the middle of the lake. This park is a bit sparser, in that there is no camping available at Mary King Park. However, there is a boat ramp capable of handling boats of all sizes. There are restrooms, but access is only open dawn to dusk and largely only handles foot traffic. Many people who opt to use Mary King Park do so for its easy access to Lake Cypress Springs and Lake Bob Sandlin State Park. There is a fishing pier and there are picnic tables and grills, so feel free to have a great day of fishing, as long as you plan to head home at the end of the day.
- Overlook Park is located on the north shore at the middle of the lake. This park offers restrooms, camping and a boat launch ramp that can handle all sizes of boat. Just north of Overlook Park is Tall Tree Marina, which is open on weekends for fuel and food sales and which features boat slips.
- Walleye Park is located on the north shore of Lake Cypress Springs near the dam. Like the other parks on the lake, there is a boat ramp capable of handling any size boat. The park also features picnic facilities, and an RV park. The RV park has a number of spaces for which a reservation is not needed, but most of the spaces require a reservation before arrival. There is no traditional campground, but there are playgrounds, and the park is very pet-friendly.
There are many places all over Lake Cypress Springs to find boat rentals, or even rentals of jet skis, waverunners, kayaks and canoes, but there are also facilities offering boat tours and charters using both boats and jet skis. There are also plenty of places along the lake that rent kayaks and canoes, so it also possible to paddle your way around this beautiful water in East Texas. All of this combines to make Lake Cypress Springs an nearly perfect location for those interested in water sports of all types, as well as fishing and swimming.
A Great Lake to Enjoy Nature and Everything Else
Lake Cypress Springs is also a great place to see wildlife and birds in their natural habitat. During the winter months, bald eagles are spotted frequently, with other wildlife viewable at all times of year. Mount Pleasant is the closest community to Lake Cypress Springs, and it is named well. The town is a typically charming Texas Main Street city, which means those who enjoy shopping as part of their getaway will not be disappointed. In addition to accommodations to satisfy every taste and fine dining restaurants, cafes and tearooms, visitors will also find great shops, including boutiques and antique shops, as well as sporting goods for the anglers who are perhaps missing something. Local Mount Pleasant merchants offer everything from fish hooks to canoes, kayaks and other personal watercraft.
That is just the closest town to Lake Cypress Springs. Visitors too the lake may also find the historic city of Mount Vernon, which lies just northwest of the lake, to their liking. Mount Vernon also offers plenty of great accommodations for nearly every taste, including motels, historic homes and romantic bed & breakfasts. The city’s active Main Street area features a number of shopping and fine dining options, as well as museums and a cultural arts center, in addition to the fine antiquing experience. For nature lovers, Mount Pleasant also features two nature centers, complete with marked trails and plenty of opportunities to observe native wildlife and beautiful flora and fauna.
Take the Family to Lake Cypress Springs
Just east of Lake Cypress Springs lies the city of Pittsburg, which offers plenty of accommodations, as well as amazing gift shops and boutiques, as well as antique shops and clothing stores, museums, gift shops and a 1950’s style soda fountain. One unique feature of Pittsburg is the prayer tower in the center of town, which features Paccard bells from France and which chime every hour.
Though there are many other things to do in and around Lake Cypress Springs, it is known best as a bass fisherman’s paradise, as well as a haven for those seeking relief from the hot Texas summer sun.