Okeechobee is Seminole for "big water," and the Florida lake known as The Big O is certainly that: At 730 square miles, it's the state's biggest lake, and probably its best freshwater fishery, too. "While there are plenty of great bass fisheries in Florida, Lake Okeechobee is better right now than it has been in years," says VanDam. Although be warned: Since the O is just 30 miles from the Atlantic Ocean, 60 miles from the Gulf of Mexico, and 45 miles from the Everglades, a casual trip can quickly turn into a grand fishing tour of southern Florida.
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