FISH WERE IN SCHOOLS; SAM WAS NOT — 52 FISH @ BELTON

WHO I FISHED WITH:  This morning, Monday, 21 May, I once again fished with DJ Fuller, this time accompanied by his son, Sam, age 9.  As the school year winds down and the STAAR testing is all in the rearview mirror, the time was right for father and son to spend some time on the water.  During this outing Sam caught the first hybrid striped bass of his life, the first white bass of his life, and the first blue catfish of his life.

 

From left:  DJ Fuller of DB Fuller Homes and his 9-year-old son, Sam.  The pair landed 52 fish on a shortened 3-hour excursion this morning on Lake Belton.  We targeted hybrid striped bass, but also caught white bass and blue catfish, as well. 

Sam does not appear to be traumatized by missing whatever the Salado Independent School District had in store for him today.

 

WHAT WE FISHED FOR:  We targeted hybrid striped bass for about 2.5 hours this morning, then changed over to slipfloat fishing for blue catfish.  As always, we picked up white bass along the way, most of which were 2-year class fish.

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED: Monday morning, 21 May 2018

HOW WE FISHED: This morning’s trip was only 3 hours in length due to DJ’s work schedule. We fished live shad the entire trip, catching a majority of our hybrid by 8:40am, then a greater percentage of white bass through 9:10, then, to provide Sam with some variety, I broke out the slipfloat rods and we capitalized on the bluecat we had attracted to the area via out chumming.  We used cutbait on these slipfloat equipped spinning rods to put a number of additional white bass, bluecat, and one bonus hybrid in the boat.

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES:    1) Area SHAD19 produced average sized threadfin this morning, and they showed up as late as I’ve seen spawning shad run lately — about 6:43 to 6:50.  About 4 schools passed through the area in <2 feet of water over this span of time and that was it.

TALLY: 52 FISH, ALL CAUGHT AND RELEASED 

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time: 7:00a

End Time: 9:50a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 63F – air was rain-cooled from yesterday’s morning storms

Water Surface Temp:  75.1F

Wind Speed & Direction:  Steady ENE breeze at 6mph

Sky Conditions:  Grey skies

Water Level: 1.77 feet low and slowly rising thanks to Sunday morning’s storms which dropped 0.50 to 2.00 inches of rain area-wide.

GT = 195

 

Wx SNAPSHOT:    

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area  B0092C – one stop atop this area for ~3 hours yielded 53 fish

 

 

 

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@HoldingelleTheLineGuideService.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/bobmaindelle

Twitter: www/twitter.com/bobmaindelle

3 GENERATIONS ABOARD — 72 FISH @ BELTON

WHO I FISHED WITH:  This past Saturday morning I fished with returning guests Jim, Dan, and Jake Deuser — three generations of Deusers.  Jim has retired to Georgetown, his son, Dan, works in San Antonio, and Dan’s son, Jake, is a high school student in San Antonio who, by the way, is working toward earning the rank of Eagle Scout.

From left:  Dan, Jim, and Jake Deuser cashed in on some late spring Belton Lake hybrid action.  The shad spawn continued this morning, as did the hybrid bite.

 

WHAT WE FISHED FOR:  We targeted hybrid striped bass for the entire 4 hours this morning.   As always, we had white bass, as well as a few blue cat and even fewer largemouth bass blend in the mix, too.   The best hybrid bite came from 7:30 to 8:30, and then, after moving to our second area, from 9:30 to 10:00 as the wind increased fairly quickly.

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED: Friday morning, 18 May 2018

HOW WE FISHED: We fished live shad the entire trip.

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES:    1) Area SHAD18 produced really nice quality threadfin shad this morning around 6:25-6:35am. 2) Smaller sized threadfin shad and cutbait got the nod this morning; fish were again generally uninterested in large threadfin.  3) I observed several nearby boats using gizzard shad catching nil.

TALLY: 72 FISH, ALL CAUGHT AND RELEASED 

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time: 6:35a

End Time: 10:45a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 73F

Water Surface Temp:  75.4F

Wind Speed & Direction:  Steady SSE wind at 10-11, tapering up to SSE17 by trip’s end

Sky Conditions:  Light blue sky with 40-50% cloud cover.

Water Level: 1.93 feet low and slowly falling.

GT = 5

 

Wx SNAPSHOT:    

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area B0091C

**Area vic 1469

 

 

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@HoldingelleTheLineGuideService.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/bobmaindelle

Twitter: www/twitter.com/bobmaindelle

High Fence Fishing with DJ Fuller and Marty Wall — 102 Fish

WHO I FISHED WITH:  This past Friday morning I fished with Marty Wall of Killeen and DJ Fuller of Salado.  Marty draws house plans, DJ is a local home builder, and the two have worked together for some time.  This morning it was time to fish together.  DJ had never really experienced the kind of continuous catching that we enjoyed this morning.  Being a hunter, he compared the fishing to hunting in a high-fence environment in which the game animals have no where to go.  We nicknamed this “High Fence Fishing”.

 

From left:  DJ Fuller of DB Fuller Homes, and Marty Wall of The Plan Man home plans/drawing, took some down time and enjoyed a strong hybrid striped bass bite on Lake Belton this morning.  After two days of decidedly “unfishy” weather (clear skies, calm winds), the shad were spawning and the fish were biting (and the boat traffic was very light!). 

 

 

WHAT WE FISHED FOR:  We targeted hybrid striped bass for the entire 4 hours this morning.   As always, we had white bass, as well as a few blue cat and even fewer largemouth bass blend in the mix, too.  Roughly 60% of our catch of 102 fish consisted of “keeper” hybrid of at least 18 inches in length.

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED: Friday morning, 18 May 2018

HOW WE FISHED: We fished live shad the entire trip.

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES:    1) Area SHAD14 produced really nice quality threadfin shad this morning around 6:00 to 6:05am, and lots of them. 2) Medium sized threadfin shad and cutbait got the nod this morning; fish were generally uninterested in large threadfin.  3) Generally speaking, based on water temperature, time of year, and the tempo of the shad spawn, I estimate that we are past the peak of the traditional late spring hybrid bite when the great combination of quality and quantity comes together like at no other time of the year.  I suspect we’ll get another 2 weeks or so out of the hybrid before the beginnings of the thermocline begin to form and the fish begin to scatter horizontally and leave the deep water bottom haunts they’ve been in for quite some time now.  Finding threadfin shad will be tougher than the “one and done” kind of net tossing that has been the rule for the past month or so.

TALLY: 102 FISH, ALL CAUGHT AND RELEASED 

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time: 6:30a

End Time: 11:00a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 73F

Water Surface Temp:  78.4F

Wind Speed & Direction:  Steady SSE wind at 7-9, tapering up to SSE13 by trip’s end

Sky Conditions:  Light blue sky with 60% cloud cover at sunrise, slowly decreasing to 30% by trip’s end

Water Level: 1.92 feet low and slowly rising thanks to Tuesday’s storms to our west.

GT = 100

 

Wx SNAPSHOT:    

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area  B0090C – one stop atop this area for ~3 hours yielded 72 fish

**Area 717 – slower action on this area for our last hour yielded 30 fish.  This was the single best hybrid-producing morning for this area for the season thus far.

 

 

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@HoldingelleTheLineGuideService.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/bobmaindelle

Twitter: www/twitter.com/bobmaindelle

FIRST HYBRID EVER! — 69 FISH @ BELTON

WHO I FISHED WITH:  This past Wednesday morning I fished with Jerry Worley and Jerry Blalack, both of Harker Heights, TX.  The two men got to know one another when Jerry W., owner of Jerry Worley Insurance Agency, helped Jerry B. out with homeowner’s insurance.  Although we had less than ideal conditions (light cloud cover on blue skies, bright sun, and light and variable winds), we enjoyed a solid start and then moved frequently after our first two hours on the water to keep the fish coming in the boat.  When all was said and done we tallied up a catch of 69 fish.  Jerry B. landed both the first hybrid striped bass of his life and the first largemouth bass of his life.  He was raised in the Pacific Northwest and focused on trout, salmon, and sturgeon growing up.

 

Harker Heights resident and U.S. Army Vietnam-era veteran Jerry Blalack caught the first hybrid striped bass of his life this past Wednesday while fishing Lake Belton.  Jerry grew up in Washington and focused on trout and salmon growing up. 

 

Jerry Worley Insurance Agency owner Jerry Worley, also of Harker Heights came out with me for his 7th fishing trip with me through the years. 

WHAT WE FISHED FOR:  We targeted hybrid striped bass for the entire 4 hours this morning.  The majority of our hybrid came in the first 90 minutes, we then struggled for about 90 minutes when the skies were brightest and the winds were lightest, then our last hour treated us pretty well as we landed a mix of white bass and hybrid stripers with a light but consistent S. breeze blowing and some high, thin, white cloud cover taking the punch out of the sun’s intensity.

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED: Wednesday morning, 16 May 2018

HOW WE FISHED: We fished live shad the entire trip

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES:    1) No pre-dawn shad sighted this morning and no egret/heron action on this very calm morning. 2) Post-sunrise pods of spawning shad sighted and netted at SHAD18 around 6:45a running along the rocky bank in under 1.5 feet of water.

TALLY: 69 FISH, ALL CAUGHT AND RELEASED 

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time: 6:45a

End Time: 11:00a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 73F

Water Surface Temp:  75.2F

Wind Speed & Direction:  Light and variable through 10a, then steady and light S3 for the last hour

Sky Conditions:  Blue sky with 10% cloud cover

Water Level: 2.07 feet low and slowly rising thanks to Tuesday’s storms to our west.

GT = 100

 

Wx SNAPSHOT:    

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area  B0089C through 1294 – moderate, steady hybrid and white bass action with some annoying small bluecat thrown in for ~90 minutes.  54 fish.

**Area 717 – moderate, steady hybrid and white bass action in our final hour. 15 fish.

 

 

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@HoldingelleTheLineGuideService.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/bobmaindelle

Twitter: www/twitter.com/bobmaindelle

GRADUATION TRIP WITH GRANDPA ALLEN – 73 FISH @ BELTON

WHO I FISHED WITH:  This past Tuesday morning I fished with Allen Naff and his granddaughter, Logan Floyd, of Marble Falls, TX.  Logan, age 18, just graduated from Faith Academy and, after working this coming summer in the family real estate business, will be headed to Temple College in Temple, TX, pursuing a degree in accounting.  Logan had never landed a hybrid striped bass before this morning’s trip, but had enough fishing fundamentals down to do very well.  We wound up with 73 fish in right at 4 hours of fishing.

From left: Logan Floyd and her grandfather, Allen Naff, both of Marble Falls, TX, did a granddad-granddaughter trip with me on Belton this morning following Logan’s graduation from Faith Academy. 

Allen with our best fish of the trip.  We enjoyed pleasant weather and a steady bite all morning. 

WHAT WE FISHED FOR:  We targeted hybrid striped bass for the entire 4 hours this morning.  The majority of our hybrid came in the first 3 hours, then white bass made up a greater part of our catch between 9:45 and 10:45am.

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED: Tuesday morning, 15 May 2018

HOW WE FISHED: It was pretty straightforward fishing this morning with great conditions — we had just enough thin cloud cover to keep the direct sun from making it too hot, and enough breeze to disturb the water’s surface and get the fish into a feeding mood.  We fished on one area for three hours with a steady pick of fish, a majority of which were hybrid striped bass, taken on live shad.  When this area went soft, we moved and got back into fish, although the majority of the fish caught at this second area were white bass. Logan kept ’em coming in on the portside on bait while Allen worked a jig for variety’s sake and caught white bass on the starboard.  Bait definitely outperformed the artificials, but he wanted to see how this tactic worked so as to use it in other seasons back on his home waters.

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES:    1) Abundant shad spawning at Area SHAD 14 right at 6:00am.

TALLY: 73 FISH, ALL CAUGHT AND RELEASED 

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time: 6:45a

End Time: 10:45a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 73F

Water Surface Temp:  73.7F

Wind Speed & Direction:  Steady S8

Sky Conditions:  Blue sky with 20% cloud cover

Water Level: 1.98 low and steady.

GT = 20

 

Wx SNAPSHOT:    

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area  vic1555 – strong hybrid action on shad for 2 hours for 49 fish.

**Area 717/B0037C – moderate action for white bass and fewer hybrid on shad for the final hour

 

 

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@HoldingelleTheLineGuideService.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/bobmaindelle

Twitter: www/twitter.com/bobmaindelle

WE SHOULD DO THIS EVERY DAY, DADDY! — 79 FISH @ BELTON

WHO I FISHED WITH:  This past Saturday morning I fished a birthday trip with KISD high school teacher Bob Williamson, his daughters, Bobbie and April, and his son-in-law, Ian, who is married to Bob’s daughter, Mary.  The daughters all went in on a fishing gift certificate for their dad and today was the day to cash it in.  As the bite peaked around 7:30am with everyone’s rod going off nearly instantly each time we let down either live bait or cutbait, 7-year-old April said, “We should do this every day, daddy!”.  That was music to my ears, as I’m always a bit concerned about using live bait with younger guests because the ‘wait-factor’ can be a bit much for them.

From left: Bob, Bobbie, and 7-year-old April Williamson, each with a 3-year class hybrid striper taken during the peak bite, right around 7:30am during this birthday trip for Bob. 

Bob landed our longest hybrid of the trip during the slower third hour on the water. 

Bob’s son-in-law, Ian Stephenson, landed our heaviest hybrid of the trip with a larger-than-average threadfin shad as his live bait. 

WHAT WE FISHED FOR:  We targeted hybrid striped bass for 3 hours, then spent our last hour looking for white bass.

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED: Saturday morning, 12 May 2018

HOW WE FISHED:  The bite went a good bit shorter this morning than it did Thursday and Friday, going strong for about 2 hours from 6:30 to 8:30 am, then really idling back thereafter.  In our first two hours, we landed 54 fish and then landed another 25 fish in the last two hours. We fished live shad with good success for the first 3 hours of the trip, then, after hitting a number of areas and looking them over with sonar, I felt our chances of keeping 7-year-old April engaged would be best if we switched over to using artificial lures for white bass.  We did pretty well on the white bass, which I found at a crazy-deep depth of 62 feet, via smoking small, white, 3/8 oz. slabs with Hazy Eye Stinger hooks attached.  The white bass were not heavily schooled, but were holding tight to the bottom in small clusters.

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES:    1) Abundant shad spawning at Area SHAD 14.

TALLY: 79 FISH, ALL CAUGHT AND RELEASED 

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time: 7:00a

End Time: 11:15a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 3F

Water Surface Temp:  71.6F

Wind Speed & Direction:  SSE12 at trip’s start, slowly tapering up to SSE17+ by trip’s end

Sky Conditions:  Blue sky with 40% cloud cover

Water Level: 1.98 low and steady.

GT = 105

 

Wx SNAPSHOT:    

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area  1541/1555 – strong hybrid action on shad for 2 hours.

**Area vic 976 – slow action for hybrid on shad for the third hour

**Area vic 1467 and deeper (to 62′) – slow white bass action on slabs in very deep water

 

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

PRIDE OF TEXAS – 114 FISH @ BELTON

WHO I FISHED WITH:  This past Friday morning I fished with the crew from Pride of Texas Irrigation & Landscaping from the north Austin area.  With me was company owner, Justin Pride, trip coordinator and long-time client Rob Ramey, and a former co-worker of Justin’s and Rob’s, Brian Badour.

 

From left: Brian Badour, Rob Ramey, and Justin Pride.  Rob’s fish measured 24.50 inches and was the largest fish of the trip this morning. 

Rob Ramey with our second largest hybrid striper of the trip, a well-proportioned 23.50 inch fish. 

WHAT WE FISHED FOR:  We targeted hybrid striped bass for 3.5 hours, then spent our last half-hour looking for white bass.

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED: Friday morning, 11 May 2018

HOW WE FISHED:   We enjoyed the single longest run of hybrid fishing thus far this season with a full 3.5 hour-long bite taking place on top of one area.  We used live shad of various sizes, as well as cutbait, to boat 111 fish by 10:30am when the bite finally died.  Easily 75% of the fish we landed in this area were healthy, hard-pulling 3 to 4 year class fish, with a few older fish caught, as well.  The incidental white bass we caught were all 2-year class fish.  After the bite died at 10:30, we went searching for “jiggable” populations of deep white bass, and found only small pockets of fish, not the large shoals of fish I’d found a few time earlier in the week.  The scattered fish and high winds put a damper on the white bass fishing, giving up only 3 fish as we closed out our trip and headed (on a wet ride!) back to the dock.

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES:    1) No spawning shad at Areas SHAD 16 or SHAD 17  2) This was the longest-lasting hybrid bite of the season thus far.  It lasted a full 3.5 hours.

TALLY: 114 FISH, ALL CAUGHT AND RELEASED 

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time: 7:00a

End Time: 11:15a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 3F

Water Surface Temp:  71.6F

Wind Speed & Direction:  SSE12 at trip’s start, slowly tapering up to SSE17+ by trip’s end

Sky Conditions:  Blue sky with 40% cloud cover

Water Level: 1.98 low and steady.

GT = 105

 

Wx SNAPSHOT:    

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area  B0089C – 111 fish on live shad and cutbait in 3.5 hours of fishing, incl. 75% legal hybrid striped bass

**Area vic 717 – 3 white bass from a small, disinterested school in high wind conditions

 

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

Old-Timers Day – 101 Fish @ Lake Belton

WHO I FISHED WITH:  This past Thursday morning I fished with retired Lake Belton fishing guide George O’Connor, and long-time Lake Belton multi-species angler Rodney Tyroch.  This trip was in celebration of George’s recent 80th birthday.  After the (very successful) hybrid fishing, we headed over to China Cafe near the Walmart in Belton and enjoyed their food after releasing all of the fish we landed.  Both men are very helpful, selfless fellows who befriended me and aided me greatly through the years and as I worked to establish and grow my guide service.

 

From left: Rodney Tyroch, George O’Connor, and I fished together this morning in celebration of George’s 80th birthday. 

WHAT WE FISHED FOR: Today we fished from 7:00a to 10:00a for hybrid striped bass using live shad.  We then fished for white bass from 10:35 to 11:05a using slabs and Hazy Eye Stinger hooks.

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED: Thursday morning, 10 May 2018

HOW WE FISHED:  During this trip, we focused on fishing for hybrid striped bass using live shad through 10:00am.  During this time we stayed on just one area and took 76 fish, a majority of which were keeper hybrid, with a few white bass and blue catfish mixed in.  We then left fish biting to go in search of hybrid at a few areas George suggested.  We looked two areas over with sonar but didn’t find much.  In the last 25 minutes or so, from 10:35 to about 11:05, we vertically jigged for a heavily congregated and very aggressive school of nice 2-year class white bass which we located with sonar in 52 feet of water.  We used 3/8 oz. slabs with Hazy Eye Stinger hooks affixed to the line tie and put exactly 25 fish in the boat in this short span of time.  We finished the trip with George and Rodney landing a double for a total of 101 fish.

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES:    1) Heavy shad spawn from 6:20 to 6:30a at Area SHAD14

TALLY: 101 FISH, ALL CAUGHT AND RELEASED 

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time: 6:45a

End Time: 11:05a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 68F

Water Surface Temp:  70.9F

Wind Speed & Direction:  SSE9 through 9a, then shifting to S and speeding up to 14-16 mph.

Sky Conditions:  Cloudless blue sky with the lightest of white haze on occasion

Water Level: 1.98 low and steady.

GT = 0

 

Wx SNAPSHOT:    

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area B0088C- 3 solid hours of fish catching on one area producing 76 fish, of which ~70% were legal hybrid striped bass with a few whites and bluecat mixed in

**Area 717 – produced 25 white bass in about 30 minutes of effort on slabs worked vertically in 52′

 

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

RIGHT AT HOME WITH THE PULTE GROUP — 94 FISH @ LAKE BELTON

WHO I FISHED WITH:  This past Wednesday morning I fished with a group of six from the Pulte Group out of Austin.  To make this trip more enjoyable, we split this party across two boats.  I was ably assisted by fellow guide Jason Weisberg of REEL Fishing Guide Service out of Round Rock to accomplish this.  My 3-angler party consisted of Nick McIntyre, Tina Cox, and Brian Beil.  Jason’s crew consisted of Ricky Guenat, Hampton Haines, and Steve Ashlock.  The Pulte Group acquires land and develops it with homes, building under the familiar names of Centex, DelWebb, DiVosta, and John Wieland Homes.

 

From left: Bryan Beil, Nick McIntyre, and Tina Cox with one of the many hybrid stripers we landed on live shad on what was an early bite this morning. Nick came into the trip with the most prior experience on the boat, having fished for hybrid on Buchanan and on Tawakoni in the past.

 

Tina Cox had beginner’s luck going for her and caught the largest fish on the boat this morning.

 

Bryan Beil gives the “thumbs up” on his first hybrid striper of the morning.

Although hybrid stripers were the target species, when fishing live shad, largemouth bass (like this on caught by Steve Ashlock), white bass, crappie, blue catfish, and other species are often caught, as well.

Ricky Guenat grips onto a nice Lake Belton hybrid striper he took on live shad.

Although we didn’t capture any photos of Hampton Haines on this trip, this photo shows him in April 2017 with the (still current) Lake Belton catch-and-release category hybrid striper, which measured 25.75 inches.

WHAT WE FISHED FOR: During this trip, we focused on fishing for hybrid striped bass using live shad through 10:15am, we then left about a half hour to fish for white bass, primarily to demonstrate the tactics used for that species at this time of year.

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED: Wednesday morning, 09 May 2018

HOW WE FISHED:  Jason and I were both in agreement, based on observations from the past week and a half on the water, that the bite was going to happen early today.  We also agreed that splitting up would be best as neither of us has had positive experiences trying to fish groups in close proximity to one another.  Our approaches were similar, and our results were similar.  Fishing began well right off the bat using live shad on tightlines and stayed strong from 7am to 8:30am.  The bite began to decline from 8:30am until around 9:00am, after which it got very tough.  Both Jason’s crew and mine finished out our trips (the last 35-45 minutes or so) searching for some white bass to catch, but even that species had quit feeding for the morning.  When all was said and done, the Pulte Group team amassed a catch of 94 fish, including approximately 44 hybrid striped bass, and a mixed bag of white bass, largemouth, and blue catfish.

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES:    1) Early shad spawn around 6a at Areas SHAD 16 & SHAD17

TALLY: 94 FISH, ALL CAUGHT AND RELEASED 

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time: 6:45a

End Time: 11:15a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 63F

Water Surface Temp:  70.1F

Wind Speed & Direction:  SSE<3

Sky Conditions:  Cloudless blue sky with the lightest of white haze on occasion

Water Level: 1.98 low and steady.

GT = 195

 

Wx SNAPSHOT:    

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area 1384 – 2 hours of solid hybrid action yielding 49 fish, 30% of which were legal hybrid striped bass, and the balance of which 2-3 year class white bass

**Area 1385 – produced 1 keeper hybrid and 4 whites after the 9am slow down.

 

 

 

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

TUNA FISH & BUTTER PICKLES — 92 FISH @ BELTON

WHO I FISHED WITH:  This morning, Monday, May 7th, I fished with longtime friends DE Carson and Don Eddy primarily in pursuit of hybrid striped bass on Lake Belton.  The two met over forty years ago when DE was trying to put a new roof on his house in the rain.  Don came over, offered to give him a hand and, after completing the job, sat, soaking wet in the newly-roofed house eating tuna fish sandwiches and butter pickles!  The fellows are both originally from near the Sacramento River delta region of central California, but came to Texas to volunteer in ministry and have now been here longer than either anticipated.  Through all of their fishing adventures, the most DE and Don had ever landed in a single trip was 43 fish, so, you can imagine they went home pretty happy today!

 

DE Carson with a beefy Lake Belton hybrid striped bass taken on live shad in 43 feet of water. 

 

As the photo shows, we had a glassy surface and blue skies, yet, the hybrid still bit well this morning.  This was one of Don Eddy’s larger fish landed this morning.  

 

WHAT WE FISHED FOR: During this trip, we focused on fishing for hybrid striped bass using live shad through 10:15am, we then left about a half hour to fish for white bass, primarily to demonstrate the tactics used for that species at this time of year.

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED: Monday morning, 07 May 2018

HOW WE FISHED:  The hybrid bite was excellent this morning, despite the bright skies and calm winds.  We fished only one area (with no short hops) for 3.25 hours and caught hybrid the entire time.  The most aggressive bite took place through 8:10, then tapered out to a moderate, but steady pick of fish which included an occasional white bass.  When white bass became an issue, we raised baits up a bit higher and got them to leave us alone.  We put baits between 34 and 40 feet deep over a 43′ bottom, as sonar dictated.  We ended up with 78 fish from this one stop, 75% of which were legal hybrid stripers.  We saved a bit of time at the end of the trip for slabbing for white bass, mainly to demonstrate the technique of “smoking” to DE and Don.  We put 14 additional white bass in the 1-2 year class in the boat in our final half hour from out of 52 of water.  These fish were heavily congregated but were just about turned off for the morning when we got to them given that we fish for hybrid for an extended period of time as compared with last week’s bite which routinely wrapped up around 9AM or earlier.

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES:   1) I was surprised that we did as well as we did this morning, given the low wind speed and near-cloudless conditions we encountered.  2) I believe we are at that point which occurs each spring where the warming water drives up fish metabolism to where they begin to feed at times when they normally would not in colder water conditions.  3) We caught hybrid for 3.25 hours, with the last hour seeing better results on cutbait than on live bait.

TALLY: 92 FISH, ALL CAUGHT AND RELEASED 

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time: 6:45a

End Time: 11:05a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 63F

Water Surface Temp:  70.8F

Wind Speed & Direction:  SSE<3

Sky Conditions:  Cloudless blue sky with the lightest of white haze on occasion

Water Level: 1.98 low and rising.  This was a 0.40 foot jump due to Friday’s local rainfall.  As a result, there was a noticeable amount of flotsam on the surface.

GT = 0

 

Wx SNAPSHOT:    

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area B0087C – 3.25 hours of solid hybrid action yielding 78 fish, 75% of which were legal hybrid striped bass, and the balance of which 2-3 year class white bass

**Area vic 717 – deep, loosely congregated white bass taken at a slow pace on slabs as the morning bite was shutting down (~30 minutes)

**Area “SHAD16 through SHAD17” produced ample spawning shad for bait this morning

 

 

Bob Maindelle, Central Texas Fishing Guide

Owner, Holding the Line Guide Service

254.368.7411 (call or text)

Website: www.HoldingTheLineGuideService.com

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