Lake Bob Sandlin Alligators

Lake Bob Sandlin lies in Camp, Franklin, Titus, and Wood Counties in northeast Texas. It covers an area of 9,004 acres with 75 miles of shoreline and a maximum depth of 65 feet. Rocky and clay ground define Lake Bob Sandlin beaches while the forest grows all the way to its water’s edge.

Lake Bob Sandlin lies about 100 miles northeast from Dallas, Texas, and 60 miles southwest of Texarkana, with Mt. Pleasant, Texas the closest town for supplies north of the lake. Lake Bob Sandlin does not have swim beaches because of the terrain surrounding it. The Lake Bob Sandlin State Park has a deck where you jump off into a swimming hole.

Does Lake Bob Sandlin Have Alligators?

Lake Bob Sandlin is within the east Texas counties that provide alligator habitats. There have been sporadic reports of alligator sightings over the years at Lake Bob Sandlin, but alligator sightings are extremely rare at Lake Bob Sandlin.

Yes, there are alligators at Lake Bob Sandlin. If you are outside of the parks or boating to the shoreline, you should be aware of alligator habitats, and keep an eye out for them. Alligators do not like to hang out where people tend to congregate and have a natural fear of humans. Most people will never see an alligator at Lake Bob Sandlin.

Do All Lakes in Texas Have Alligators?

Alligators are the largest reptiles in North America and can grow to over ten feet as adults. Alligators are a protected game animal in the state of Texas and no longer an endangered species. The Texas Parks and Wildlife (TPWD) issues permits to hunt, raise, or possess an alligator.

No, alligators have been sighted in 125 Texas counties, or almost half the state. Their populations are highest anywhere east of I-35. They have been seen, but not always confirmed, by the TPWD in these counties. The largest alligator populations are along the southern half of the Texas/Louisiana border and across the Texas coast to past Corpus Christi.

Game wardens and people have sighted alligators as far west as Denton and Grayson Counties, Texas, on the Red River border with Oklahoma and as far west as the southwestern Mexican border in Maverick, Webb, and Zapata counties. Most Texas counties are square-shaped except in the Texas Hill country.

Texas Hill Country counties are shaped by their hilly terrains. The alligator’s primary range stretches south from the Red River across the northern edge of the Hill Country counties and down to the Mexican border. All these alligator counties are in east and south Texas.

Can You Swim at Lake Bob Sandlin?

Big Cypress Creek, a wide river channel, connects Lake Bob Sandlin and Lake Cypress Springs. When you look at a map, both lakes look like one lake. The topography is the same on both lakes where you can find parks and swimming holes. Some swimming holes are accessible by boat only on Lake Bob Sandlin and Lake Cypress Springs.

Yes, you can swim at Lake Bob Sandlin, but don’t expect great swim beaches. There is a Lake Bob Sandlin State Park swim area, and as mentioned above, it has a designated swimming hole. Swim, fish, paddle picnic, hike, camp, geocache, mountain bike, and nature watch under the trees at Lake Bob Sandlin.

From Pittsburg, Texas, take FM 127 south to FM 21 south to the Lake Bob Sandlin State Park entrance. It is located at 341 State, Park Road 2117, Pittsburg, Texas. The Barefoot Bay RV Resort & Marina has a grassy shoreline abutting its RV area, and its shoreline is not a swim beach, but it is also not a swimming hole. People also love to visit Lake Bob Sandlin in autumn to see spectacular fall foliage.

Lake Cypress Springs Swimming Holes

Big Cypress Creek, a wide river channel, connects Lake Cypress Springs to Lake Bob Sandlin, and together, they look like one lake. Guthrie Park, Mary King Park, and Wallyeye Park all have swimming holes at Lake Cypress Creek, which runs just east of Lake Bob Sandlin.

The Cove has some waterfront on Lake Cypress Springs, but it has rocky and clay shorelines. It is a small park. The Cove has live entertainment, a gourmet restaurant, events, a lodge, an ice cream shop, and children’s paint parties. From Mount Vernon, Texas, take SH 37 south to FM 21 south to FM 2723 until you hit the Cove. The Cove is located at 4445 North FM 2723, Mount Vernon, Texas.

Gator Tips & Info

Never Feed a Gator: It Is Illegal

It is illegal for an extremely logical reason based on centuries of knowledge from the folks who live in East Texas, southwestern Arkansas, Louisiana, and Florida. Why? Gators instinctively fear humans, will not normally attack people, and become nuisance gators.

If only one person feeds a single gator, it poses a future threat to humans and a opens up a new gateway to the property near the feeding location to children, pets, deer, cattle, other livestock, and wildlife because the gators become acclimated to human interaction, lose their fear, and hunt the new grounds.

It is illegal in Texas to feed an alligator. Since October 1, 2003, it has been a Class C misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to $500 for anyone caught feeding an alligator in Texas. Human-fed gators are called nuisance gators. Even in non-core Texas counties, feeding a gator is dangerous to humans and the ecosystem.

Characteristics of Nuisance Gators

The presence of an alligator does not constitute a nuisance situation. If residences and commercial properties are located within or adjacent to habitats occupied by alligators, rare interactions do occur. Alligators are not naturally aggressive towards people. They avoid people and human-populated areas in their habitats, unless they have been fed intentionally or indirectly fed, such as by fish feeders or discarded fish remains thrown into the water.

Any alligator that has preyed upon or attempted to prey upon humans, pets, or livestock, or an alligator that shows aggression and lack of fear of humans by regularly approaching human activity is considered a "nuisance alligator". Leaving fish remains in water or on the waterfront is illegal in many state and federal wildlife management agencies, and is considered indirectly feeding a gator.

Alligators do not naturally patrol neighborhoods, busy beaches and waterfronts, and popular fishing areas in their habitats. The following are instances in which local authorities should be notified about a nuisance gator:

  • If you see an alligator in the roadway.
  • If an alligator is repeatedly following boats, canoes or other watercrafts, and/or maintains a close distance without submersing.
  • If you walk near the water and an alligator comes straight toward you, especially if it comes out of the water.

What to Do if You Have an Alligator Encounter

Serious and repeated attacks are most often made by alligators 8-feet in length or more and the result of chase and feeding behavior. Attacks by alligators under 5-feet in length are rare.

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Lake Bob Sandlin Weather Forecast


Mostly Sunny

Hi: 92

Friday Night

Slight Chance Thunderstorms

Lo: 73


Chance Thunderstorms

Hi: 93

Saturday Night

Thunderstorms Likely

Lo: 62


Chance Thunderstorms

Hi: 75

Sunday Night

Slight Chance Thunderstorms

Lo: 63


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Hi: 77

Monday Night

Chance Thunderstorms

Lo: 67

Lake Bob Sandlin Water Level (last 30 days)

Water Level on 5/20: 337.17 (-0.33)

Lake Bob Sandlin

Fishing Report from TPWD (May 18)

GOOD. Water clear; 82 degrees; 0.28 feet low. Crappie are good on brush in 15-20 feet of water biting on minnow and jigs. Bass are shallow in 2-3 feet of water off banks and under docks. Throwing your favorite plastics should land you some nice catches. Catfish are spawning with a good bite off rocks in 2-3 feet of water using cheese bait or cut bait. Report by Marty Thomas, Lake O the Pines Crappie Fishing.

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