Deep & Slow, 25 Fish, Stillhouse, 31 Jan.

This morning I did some scouting on Stillhouse in advance of a trip tomorrow morning.


The fish are deep and slow, and so the tactics must also go deep and slow.

Today’s fishing took place entirely over 45 feet deep and although the fish bit consistently, the tactics required were very slow and deliberate.

I found the fish bunched up heavily today, but, despite the numbers of fish present, most were simply in suspended animation with just a low percentage of the overall population willing to feed.

I boated 25 fish, including 21 white bass, 1 just legal largemouth, 2 drum, and 1 crappie.  Every fish caught came on either a 3/8 or 3/4 oz. TNT 180 slab.


TALLY = 25 FISH, all caught and released

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TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:
Start Time: 7:15a
End Time: 11:15a
Air Temp: 56F at trip’s start.
Water Surface Temp: 47F 
Wind: SSW8-9
Skies: Fair
Other Notes: 

Areas Fished with success:

** 1325 and 1327






Bob Maindelle
Holding the Line Guide Service

254-368-7411

www.HoldingTheLineGuideService.com
Salado, Texas

From “Quid Pro Quo” to “Fish Too Slow”, 20 Jan. 2014, Belton Lake, 8 Fish

This
morning I fished with long-time guests John, Kelly, and Matthew M. of Temple.



From L to R: John, Matthew, and Kelly M of Temple teamed up to tackle a tough white bass bite on Belton this morning.

If you’ve read this blog any length of time, you know I try to “keep it real” by posting exact fish counts (kept with a manual tally counter on me at all times during a trip), never exaggerating lengths or weights, and by posting my results, including all the good and all the bad.

Today we had a below average result on a day with above average winter weather conditions.

This was particularly disappointing after coming off of a day with less than optimal weather conditions in which we had above average results this past Saturday.

The early morning breeze, thin cloud cover and southerly component to the wind, in addition to the 3-day warming trend had me hopeful.  And, indeed, we got right on top of active fish just at sunrise. But, after just an hour, and with 8 fish boated, the fish just shut down and that was the end of the action.

We never saw any actively feeding birds, and I observed a number of boats, some belonging to knowledgeable locals, moving constantly which tells me they were not finding fish, either.  It was just plain tough.

Fortunately, this family has fished with me through good, bad, and average, and knows we can’t knock the ball out of the park every time.

The fish we did catch were all caught on white, 3/4 oz. TNT 180 slabs fished in 42-47 feet of water.  A majority of the fish struck as we used an “easing” tactic to draw striikes.

TALLY = 8 FISH, all caught and released

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TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:
Start Time: 7:15a
End Time: 12:10p
Air Temp: 51F at trip’s start.
Water Surface Temp: 49F 
Wind: SSE7 at sunrise, shifting and building to S14 by trip’s end
Skies: Clear
Other Notes: GT0

Areas Fished with success:

**  1324 (0 B)



Bob Maindelle
Holding the Line Guide Service

254-368-7411

www.HoldingTheLineGuideService.com
Salado, Texas

Quid Pro Quo — 50 Fish, Belton Lake, 18 Jan. 2014

This
morning I fished with fellow guide Dean Stovall of Whitney’s Almost Everything Outdoors over on Lake Whitney.  He and I met last weekend at the Central Texas Boat Show and hit it off.  Long story short we did a little bartering this morning.  I fine-tuned Dean’s sonar, while he showed me a few techniques he employs which I’d never experimented with before.



Fellow guides Dean Stovall (Lakes Belton/Whitney) & Bob Maindelle (Lakes Belton/Stillhouse Hollow) teamed up today for a 50-fish catch-and-release outing on Belton.  Here, Dean holds a nice Belton hybrid striped bass he caught from a suspended school of fish which Bob had dialed in on sonar.  Both guides fish year ’round.  Dean can be reached at 254-721-3512; Bob can be reached at 254-368-7411.


The fishing this morning was fairly “technical”, but productive as we had the first returning south wind begin to push today after several days of northerly winds and high, clear skies.

We encountered some early, helpful bird activity beginning around 8:30a, and then birds worked sporadically over top of fairly lethargic, suspended fish in deep water thereafter.

We had our best success on white bass when the fish we found were bottom-oriented and fairly tightly grouped up.  After mid-morning, such action was hard to come by, so, instead, we focused on the tougher-to-catch but still accessible suspended fish.

On these suspended fish, we encountered them in 46-51 feet of water, and they appeared from 20 to 45 feet down, with only occasional fish actually appearing on bottom.  We hovered over top of these fish, spotted them on sonar, adjusted our presentation to be at their depth, and then finessed our baits to tempt them.

When all was said and done, we’d cooperated on putting together a string of exactly 50 fish, all caught and released, including 47 white bass, 2 hybrid striped bass, and 1 largemouth bass.

We enjoyed one another’s company and sharing our experiences in the fishing guide business.

TALLY = 50 FISH, all caught and released

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TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:
Start Time: 8:00a
End Time: 12:00p
Air Temp: 33F at trip’s start.
Water Surface Temp: 49F 
Wind: Calm for first 90 minutes, then a light breeze at 6-7 from the SSE, building and shifting to SSW14 by trip’s end
Skies: Clear
Other Notes: GT30

Areas Fished with success:
**  187 (15T)
**  1324 (20T, 2L)



Bob Maindelle
Holding the Line Guide Service

254-368-7411

www.HoldingTheLineGuideService.com
Salado, Texas