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Fly Fishing Bartow | Mary Holland Park

The fly fisher will enjoy Mary Holland Park.  Pan Fish (Bluegill) and Bass (Black Bass) can be caught on top water and subsurface flies.  The fishery is conveniently located and no boats are necessary.

Fly Fishing Bartow | Mary Holland Park

 This park includes a library, playgrounds, soccer fields, exercise paths and quiet places to sit in the shade.  There are four small lakes within the park.  Three of them are not suited to the fly fisher, but the western most lake, between the park entrance and library, is welcoming to the long rod.  This lake has dark water of moderate depth.  There is some aquatic vegetation (photo,) but if you are careful, a weed guard is not a necessity.  There is some shore line vegetation, but fly casting is no problem.  Florida is famous for our “Big Swimming Lizards,” Mary Holland Park has its share, wading is not recommended.  These conditions require simple gear;

  • Recomended 4 weight fly rods  to 6 weights fly rods  (A nine foot long rod makes casting easy) for small bass and panfish.
  • A floating line and seven to nine foot leader
  • Sunglasses for safety
  • Forceps and nippers on a clip-on zinger
  • The classic popper works mornings and evenings.  Or try one of the new Boogle Bugs.  At other times of the day, tie on a Clouser Minnow in dark colors, or a Half and Half with rattle eyes.  The Pan Fish which live with Bass are a blast, so carry some flies in small sizes.

 After fishing, you might enjoy the Bartow Public Library (photo,) or the shops and restaurants nestled among historic buildings in Bartow’s downtown.

Article and Photos by Chris O'byrne

Mary Holland Park, Broadway Ave N, Bartow, FL, 33830-> Click for Google interactive map

Mary Holland Park Map


Allen Wyatt
Allen Wyatt


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