20th “SKIFF” Program Trip of the Season — 48 fish on Lake Belton

WHO I FISHED WITH:  Nancy Phimmasone and her four children, Isaiah (age seven), Aiyana (age nine), Qwentin (age 14), and Asia (age 16).  Nancy and her kids have fished with me under the SKIFF program several times after Nancy’s husband passed away while on active duty, often in conjunction with the timing of Ft. Hood’s annual “Good Grief” camp for surviving family members.


Smaller bluecat were our first targets from out of large, deep schools of fish in ~40 feet of water.  From left: Asia, Aiyana, Isaiah, and Qwentin, each with a blue cat going 12-14″.  Mom (Nancy) looks on from over Qwentin’s shoulder.


The white bass got active in the final hour of light, allowing each of the kids to take several turns on the twin downriggers.  From left: Isaiah, Aiyana, Asia, and Qwentin.

WHAT WE FISHED FOR: This was a multi-species trip in which we targeted blue catfish for 2 hours and white bass for 2 hours.


WHEN WE FISHED:  Saturday evening, 09 Sept., from 4 to 8:10p.

HOW WE FISHED: The first half of this trip we focused on small blue catfish heavily congregated in deep water.  I used cut shad on tandem hooks suspended off bottom with a beefy slipfloat to present the baits to these fish which were on an above bottom, to within 4 feet of it.  We landed 20 catfish and missed many more as the kids went through the learning curve of how and when to set the hook.

The  second part of the trip we focused on white bass using downriggers in the third and fourth hours.  We fished out deep (25-30′) through 7p, and followed up shallow with the downriggers in under 20′ in the last hour. We landed 28 white bass.

OTHER OBSERVATIONS: Thanks to a NNW wind, there was very little topwater action by white bass visible in the “magic” time from 7:20 to just after 8:00pm.  This was the 20th SKIFF trip of the 2017 season.


TALLY: 48 FISH, all caught and released


Start Time: 4:00p

End Time: 8:10p

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 85F

Water Surface Temp: 79F

Wind Speed & Direction: Light NE breeze 4-6 mph

Sky Conditions: <10% white cloud cover the entire trip.

Water Level: 0.98 feet low and slowly falling with only evaporative losses; 0 cfs release at dam

GT = 0





**Area vic 973 – blue cat in 40′

**Area 903 – 1575 – downrigging for sunset white bass


Bob Maindelle, Central Texas Fishing Guide

Owner, Holding the Line Guide Service

254.368.7411 (call or text)

Website: www.HoldingTheLineGuideService.com

E-mail: Bob@HoldingTheLineGuideService.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/bobmaindelle

Twitter: www/twitter.com/bobmaindelle

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