SUMMER BREAK IS WINDING DOWN — 48 FISH WITH THE MOSS CLAN

WHO I FISHED WITH: This morning I fished with Pastor Justin Moss of Harker Heights and his two children, Lilli and Jackson.  Justin is the senior pastor at Memorial Baptist Church in Killeen.  Lilli is headed into 5th grade, enjoys dance, and is thinking about becoming a veterinarian or a surgeon.  Jackson is 7 and enjoys his karate classes at Legacy Martial Arts in Harker Heights.  The kids’ mom, Carrie, is a KISD teacher and is already back to school, so we had to leave her back on land this morning.

From left: Lilli, Justin, and Jackson Moss with two of the 48 fish Lilli and Jackson landed this morning.  We fished for both sunfish and white bass.

 

WHAT WE FISHED FOR:  This was a multi-species trip focused on sunfish & white bass.

WHERE WE FISHED: Stillhouse Hollow Reservoir

WHEN WE FISHED:  Thursday morning, 23 August 2018

HOW WE FISHED:  We devoted our first hour or so to fishing for sunfish up shallow and under low-light conditions.  The kids used bream rods with slip-float rigs to catch longear, bluegill, and green sunfish in water under 3′ deep.  The balance of the trip was devoted to the pursuit of white bass.  The bite was so-so today. We did not encounter any topwater action, we saw only one flock of terns and they were not working over feeding fish, and the fish we caught were deep and very scattered.  I did not see a single opportunity to stop and really catch a multitude of fish using vertical tactics because the fish were neither on bottom, nor tightly schooled.  Regardless, we covered water very efficiently with the downriggers and kept the action steady enough to keep the kids engaged a full 4+ hours.  Along the way we landed two sets of doubles and the remainder of our white bass came as singles.

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES:  My thermocline readings for this week:

0 feet 87.2°

5 feet 87°

10 feet 86.8°

15 feet 86.7°

20 feet 86.1°

25 feet 85.5°

30 feet 84.3°

35 feet 84°

40 feet 81.7°

45 feet 72.8°

50 feet 66.4°

55 feet 63.7°

60 feet 61.4°

 

TALLY: 48 fish, all caught and released

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time: 6:45a

End Time: 11:00a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 76F

Water Surface Temp:   85.8F

Wind Speed & Direction: Winds were calm at sunrise, building to S5-7 by 8:15a and remaining at that velocity for the balance of the trip.

Sky Conditions: 0% cloud cover.

Water Level: 7.58 feet low and falling

GT = 55

Wx SNAPSHOT:  

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area 201 & 420 for 30 sunfish

**Area 1446-1241 downrigging for 15 white bass

**Area v SH0044C – downrigging for 3 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@HoldingelleTheLineGuideService.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/bobmaindelle

Twitter: www/twitter.com/bobmaindelle

SLEEP IS FOR THE WEAK — 62 FISH, SKIFF TRIP #10

WHO I FISHED WITH: This morning I fished the 2018 season’s 10th SKIFF (Soldiers’ Kids Involved in Fishing Fun) program trip provided free of charge to the Ruth family of Harker Heights.  I welcomed aboard big brother Stephen (age 12) and his twin siblings, Sahara and Sterling (both age 9).  Mrs. Bettina Ruth, the children’s mom, and I agreed the kids would do just fine without her, so, she got to enjoy some down time while the kids and I went to hunt for fish.

SURPRISE PHONE CALL: At exactly 8:29 a.m., after Stephen had just landed a “triple” with our 16th, 17th, and 18th fish of the trip, and as Sahara was in the midst of reeling in number 19, my phone rang.  Despite having my hands pretty full, I went ahead and answered it, and was glad I did.  It was the kids’ dad, U.S. Army Colonel Stephen Ruth calling all the way from Erbil in northern Iraq to see how his kids were doing on their trip.  Each of the kids excitedly told him about their experience.  COL Ruth has been deployed for over a year and looks forward to returning to the US next month.

FUNNY CLOSING LINE: As we returned to the boat ramp, Mrs. Ruth was there waiting on us.  Immediately the kids started telling her all about their experiences on the boat.  They asked if they could go again and their mom told them they all needed to think about doing a family trip once COL Ruth had made it home.  Stephen spoke up and said, “Yeah, we could schedule a trip for the weekend he gets back!”.  To which I replied, “Well, don’t you think he might need to sleep in that first weekend after being gone for a year and after the long flight back from Iraq?”  Stephen didn’t miss a beat and said, “No, sleep is for the weak!”  Mom and I just shook our heads.

ABOUT SKIFF: SKIFF serves to put the kids of soldiers on the water at times when duty pulls parents away from their families.  Begun in 2009, SKIFF offers trips free of charge to any military family wherein kids are separated from their parent due to that parent’s military obligations from short-term commitments like gunnery or field time at Ft. Hood, to lengthy deployments, and anything in between.  Simply call me, Bob Maindelle, at 254.368.7411 to reserve a date.  SKIFF is funded by the donations and fundraising efforts of the Austin Fly Fishers and the allies they have gained along the way.

The Ruth kids, from the left: Sterling, Stephen, and Sahara landed 62 fish including a dozen sunfish, 49 white bass, and 1 largemouth bass.

Sterling landed our largest fish, which also happened to be the first taken via downrigging this morning.  This largemouth bass went just a shade under 2 pounds and came out of 42 feet of water.

WHAT WE FISHED FOR:  This was a multi-species trip focused on sunfish & white bass.

WHERE WE FISHED: Stillhouse Hollow Reservoir

WHEN WE FISHED:  Wednesday morning, 22 August 2018

HOW WE FISHED:  This morning we started off by fishing for sunfish just long enough to allow the sun to brighten the sky and to give the wind a chance to start blowing after yesterday’s post-frontal calm.  We landed a dozen sunfish on bream poles and bait and then headed to deep, clear water to see what our eyes could take in and what sonar would reveal.  We found one small congregation of fish holding adjacent to the river channel and suspended at 30 feet over a 40 foot bottom.  We worked tailspinners for these fish and picked up 8 white bass; these fish were not in an overly aggressive feeding mode, so, we moved on.  We got in on the ground floor of a heavy feed in which both white bass and largemouth were chasing young-of-the-year shad throughout the lower third of the water column in 36 to 42 feet of water, and occasionally breaking away to the surface and causing a ruckus there, which helped us keep up with the action.  We used a combination of downrigging and vertically working tailspinners to land another 41 white bass and 1 largemouth bass before the kids got too hot to press on, thanks to the clear skies, hot sun, and low wind velocity.  We wrapped up with 62 fish landed.

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES:  After a calm, bright day yesterday during which I avoided fishing and conducted an on-the-water sonar training, during which time I saw zero surface activity, today saw a return of light ESE winds and some high, thin haze.  Surface action was observed in vic. 1246 where we caught most of our fish, as well as at Area 071, which we did not fish over.

 

TALLY: 80 fish, all caught and released

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time: 6:45a

End Time: 10:30a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 76F

Water Surface Temp:   86.2F

Wind Speed & Direction: Winds were calm at sunrise, slowly starting to move at up to ESE5 by 8:00a, then maintaining at that velocity for about 2 hours before tapering down to light and variable with brief periods of calm.

Sky Conditions: 0% cloud cover, just a high, thin haze

Water Level: 7.55 feet low and falling

GT = 0

Wx SNAPSHOT:  

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area 201 for 12 sunfish

**Area SH0053C – a few fish suspended around 30′ over a 40′ bottom; caught 8 with tailspinners

**Area v1246 – downrigging and tailspinners for 42 fish over a 42′ bottom

 

 

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

80 FISH ON THE CRUZ CRUISE – SKIFF TRIP #9

WHO I FISHED WITH: This morning I fished the 2018 season’s 9th SKIFF (Soldiers’ Kids Involved in Fishing Fun) program trip provided free of charge to the Cruz family of Fort Hood.  Mrs. Katy Cruz, originally from Illinois, accompanied her four kids on this morning’s excursion, including Dakottah (age 14), Makenzie (age 12), Makayla (age 10), and Gavin (age 6).

Staff Sergeant Jose Cruz, originally from Puerto Rico, has been in the U.S. Army for 12 years now.  He has been deployed approximately 3 months on an overseas deployment which is forecast to last approximately 9 months.  SSG Cruz is a medic and is currently involved in training with NATO partners.

SKIFF serves to put the kids of soldiers on the water at times when duty pulls parents away from their families.  Begun in 2009, SKIFF offers trips free of charge to any military family wherein kids are separated from their parent due to that parent’s military obligations from short-term commitments like gunnery or field time at Ft. Hood, to lengthy deployments, and anything in between.  Simply call me, Bob Maindelle, at 254.368.7411 to reserve a date.

The girls, from the left: Dakottah, Makayla, and Makenzie, and little brother Gavin who was decidedly NOT in favor of touching the fish he caught!  During this morning’s trip, the kids all landed the first fish of their lives, thus earning TPWD First Fish Awards, and went on to land a total of 80 fish including 54 sunfish and another 26 white bass.

WHAT WE FISHED FOR:  This was a multi-species trip focused on sunfish & white bass.

WHERE WE FISHED: Stillhouse Hollow Reservoir

WHEN WE FISHED:  Monday morning, 20 August 2018

HOW WE FISHED:  We broke this morning’s trip down into two distinct parts.  First, we nailed down some basics up in shallow water by fishing for sunfish with slipfloats and live bait in under 4 feet of water, landing bluegill, green, longear, and redear sunfish.  For part two, we headed out into deeper, clearer water in search of white bass.  Fortunately, the fish were in a feeding mood this morning to the point of driving bait to the surface, making them able to be spotted with the optics I have onboard.  Once we got near the commotion, I verified the exact location of the fish and bait using sonar and we sealed the deal with the pair of Cannon downriggers rigged up with 3-armed umbrella rigs and Pet Spoons.  After making a few runs at the fish with the downriggers and connecting each time, and to provide some variety for my young clients, we identified an area with a particularly heavy concentration of white bass holding near bottom and used the Minn Kota trolling motor’s Spot Lock function to establish a hover over these fish through the i-Pilot Link system which allows the Humminbird sonar (which I use primarily for side imaging) to be used as a remote control for the trolling motor.  Once we were hovering, I equipped the kids each with a spinning outfit and showed them how to work tailspinners vertically through the fish.  When the novelty of that tactic wore off, we did one more round of downrigging and then called it a morning before the temps hit the 90’s.  In all, we landed 80 fish including 54 sunfish and 26 white bass.

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES:  A mild cold front is due in in the early afternoon today and is due to change the wind direction to northerly for the remainder of the day today and all day tomorrow.

 

TALLY: 80 fish, all caught and released

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time: 6:45a

End Time: 10:30a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 76F

Water Surface Temp:   83.8F

Wind Speed & Direction: Winds S7 at sunrise, slowly moving to SW and increasing to 12 through 9:30a, then backing off to SW9-10 for remainder of trip

Sky Conditions: ~70% cloud cover, tapering to 40% by trip’s end

Water Level: 7.47 feet low and falling

GT = 0

Wx SNAPSHOT:  

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area 201 & 420 for sunfish

**Area SH0054C thru SH0044C for white bass located beneath fish crashing bait on the surface and accompanying tern activity

 

 

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

102 FISH AND A NEW LAKE RECORD WITH THE WAGNERS

WHO I FISHED WITH: This morning I fished a multi-species trip with Kris Wagner and his sons, 14-year-old Nick, and soon-to-be 10-year-old Charlie.  Kris makes his living as a urologist at Scott & White and enjoys biking. Nick is the real fisherman of the family, looking for opportunities to fish whenever and wherever he can, be it for sunfish in Nolan Creek or catfish at summer camp.  Charlie landed our fish for the record books — a spotted bass.  More about that, with a photo, in my Sunday “Guide Lines” column on Aug. 26th, though.

 

From left: Nick, Kris, and Charlie.  Because our fish were coming up from 35+ feet this morning where the water temperature was much cooler, we had to handle our fish quickly to ensure they could be released in excellent shape.  These three fish were actually all caught by Nick at the same time on his 3-armed umbrella rig.  I unhooked them, handed one to each family member, and we snapped a photo — all in a matter of seconds.  We then watched these all dig back down to that deep, dark, cool water they’d come from.

WHAT WE FISHED FOR:  This was a multi-species trip focused on white bass.

WHERE WE FISHED: Stillhouse Hollow Reservoir

WHEN WE FISHED:  Saturday morning, 18 August 2018

HOW WE FISHED:  We fished 4 areas and found fish at three of them.  I also ran sonar over 2 other areas and passed on them due to lack of fish and bait.  When fish and bait showed on sonar, we downrigged successfully and, whenever a mass of bottom-oriented white bass would show on sonar (typically setting both downriggers off as we passed over), we would stop the boat, hover atop of them and work tailspinners vertically.  This approach yielded 54 fish including 2 drum, 1 spotted bass, and 51 white bass through around 11a.  As we headed back to the ramp, I spotted some surface feeding action on a flat adjacent to the river channel.  Sonar revealed heavy schools of young of the year shad present with white bass throughout the lower third of the water column right there with them.  We went right to working tailspinners given how concentrated these fish showed to be on sonar, and wound up staying an additional hour working these fish over, and taking our tally up to 102 fish (adding 47 white bass and 1 drum to our prior total of 54 fish).

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES:  It was surprising to see fish feeding so aggressively at Area SH0053C between 11a and noon after the strong bite we’d experienced elsewhere had clearly died to nil.  This was the best topwater action I’d seen since Monday.

 

TALLY: 102 fish, all caught and released

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time: 6:45a

End Time: 12:00 noon

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 76F

Water Surface Temp:   83.8F

Wind Speed & Direction: Light winds under 4mph from S for first 90 minutes, pick up up to WSW12 for the remainder of the trip.

Sky Conditions: ~20% cloud cover

Water Level: 7.36 feet low and falling

GT = 55

Wx SNAPSHOT:  

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area   SH0052C thru 1425 – scant

**Area  1448-495-1970 – white bass via downriggers and tailspinners

**Area SH0053C – 48 white bass between 11a & noon – location revealed by surface action in SW wind at 12 mph

 

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

Leon and the Grandsons Take on Stillhouse — 39 Fish

WHO I FISHED WITH: This morning I fished a multi-species trip with Leon Kyrish’s grandsons, Connor and Will, just about a full year since their first trip to Stillhouse Hollow with me in 2017.  The boys reside north of San Antonio and Leon lives near Canyon Lake, north and west of San Antonio.  The boys and their grandparents came down early and “staged” at a hotel in Salado to avoid an extra-early morning wake up.

 

We had to work for our catch today, but the boys stayed enthusiastic the entire morning.  We landed a total of 39 fish under cloudless skies with light winds.

WHAT WE FISHED FOR:  This was a multi-species trip focused on white bass and sunfish.

WHERE WE FISHED: Stillhouse Hollow Reservoir

WHEN WE FISHED:  Friday morning, 17 August 2018

HOW WE FISHED:   We fished 4.25 hours this morning, spending all but the time from 9:30 to 10:15 (fishing for sunfish) in pursuit of white bass via downrigging. We covered 4 large,distinct tracts of water, finding fish at just two, and that action was pretty light.  We had the brightest skies and lowest wind velocity of any day this week this morning and noted that natural sign was hard to come by.  We saw no bait moving, no largemouth schooling, no terns patrolling or diving on bait, and sonar returns were much reduced versus trips earlier this week.  We wound up catching 19 white bass, 1 freshwater drum, and 20 sunfish.  It was a pretty tough morning.

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES: Light winds, zero cloud cover and minimal natural sign today.

 

TALLY: 39 fish, all caught and released

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time: 6:45a

End Time: 11:00a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 76F

Water Surface Temp:   82.9F

Wind Speed & Direction: No wind for first 90 minutes, then picking up from SSW under 8 for the remainder of the trip.

Sky Conditions: 0% cloud cover

Water Level: 7.31 feet low and falling

GT = 25

Wx SNAPSHOT:  

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area  201 – sunfish

**Area  1447-495-1970 – white bass via downriggers and tailspinners

 

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

The Lacanne Boys Pull in 71

WHO I FISHED WITH: This morning I fished a multi-species trip with Shane Lacanne and his sons, 6-year-old Jackson, and 5-year-old Fisher.  Shane makes his living selling real estate as a broker in the central Texas area through his business, Entire Real Estate L.L.C.

 

That’s Shane Lacanne holding up his boys’ fish, and that Fisher on the left and Jackson giving the “thumbs up”.  We used 3 different tactics in 3 different areas today to provide the boys with enough change of focus and change of scenery to keep them engaged from start to finish.  They landed 71 fish.

WHAT WE FISHED FOR:  This was a multi-species trip focused on white bass,

WHERE WE FISHED: Stillhouse Hollow Reservoir

WHEN WE FISHED:  Wednesday morning, 15 August 2018

HOW WE FISHED:  Given the boys’ ages of 5 and 6, I wanted to “mix it up” over the 3.5 hours of this “Kids Fish, Too!” package trip.  Even on the best of days kids this young won’t stay interested in the same thing for very long, so, we began by sunfishing up in the shallows under low light conditions, and managed to capture 25 fish this way on bream poles, including bluegill sunfish, longear sunfish, green sunfish, blacktail shiners, and a juvenile largemouth bass.  Next, I introduced the boys to downrigging and we downrigged one area until both boys had the opportunity to catch a fish and go through the entire process of setting up the ‘riggers through to landing a fish.  As this area where we did this “intro” was not all that productive, we moved on to a second area which had an abundance of gamefish and shad present.  We continued downrigging in this local, taking another 40+ fish in this area in the form of singles and doubles striking the Pet Spoons on our 3-armed umbrella rigs routinely.  Once I saw Fisher, the younger brother, starting to play out a bit, I introduced the boys to our final tactic of the morning — that of using tailspinners.  The key to using tailspinners is parking the boat over aggressive, bottom-oriented gamefish.  Some days, ample opportunities exist to do this, on other days shots at such fish are scarce.  Today, in our last hour on the water, and in about 38-40 feet of water, we came upon exactly what the doctor ordered — abundant, feeding fish tight to the bottom.  All four of us worked the tailspinners vertically and handed hooked fish off to the boys to reel in if they weren’t already battling a fish of their own.  When all was said and done, we landed 25 small fish on the bream poles, and 51 larger fish on the downriggers and tailspinners, including 1 freshwater drum, 2 largemouth bass, and 48 white bass, most of which were in the 2-year class.  With some well-timed snacks woven in, the boys stayed engaged the entire time and were already asking when the could go again as they disembarked back at the boat ramp.

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES: 

This week’s thermocline measurements were as follows:

0 feet 84.5°

5 feet 83.8°

10 feet 83.8°

15 feet 83.8°

20 feet 83.8°

25 feet 83.7°

30 feet 83.7°

35 feet 83.6°

40 feet 80.1°

45 feet 70.7°

50 feet 66.8°

55 feet 63.5°

60 feet 61.4°

 

TALLY: 71 fish, all caught and released

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time: 6:45a

End Time: 10:30a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 73F

Water Surface Temp:   84.3F

Wind Speed & Direction: SSW wind at 8-9 through 8am, then ramping up another 3-4 mph to S13-14 thereafter.

Sky Conditions: ~20% cloud cover

Water Level: 7.26 feet low and falling

GT = 25

Wx SNAPSHOT:  

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area  201 – sunfish

**Area  1447-495-1970 – white bass via downriggers and tailspinners

 

 

 

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

Catchin’ with the Cox Boys — 75 Fish on Stillhouse

WHO I FISHED WITH: This morning I fished a multi-species trip with Adam Cox of Cedar Park, TX, accompanied by his two sons, 13-year-old Jackson, and 11-year-old Addison.  Adam works in the information technology department at Yeti (as in ice chests, etc.), and runs his own 18′ fishing boat, primarily on Lake Travis.  Aside from catching fish, Adam wanted to see my overall approach to summertime fishing after realizing he and the boys do a lot more fishing than catching.

Big fish honors this morning when to Addison who landed this well-proportioned 8.00 pound largemouth on a tailspinner from out of 36 feet of water.  The fish was mixed in with a group of white bass we spotted on sonar and stopped over top of to work vertically for.  Because the fish put up a great fight and Addison had no choice but to reel it in slowly, it decompressed on its way to the surface and released cleanly with no fizzing required and no signs of barotrauma.

 

In our final hour on the water, Adam landed this nice 15+ inch white bass built more like a purebred striper.

 

Jackson stayed focused the entire trip and landed fish consistently via both downrigging and vertical jigging.  This was one of his largest white bass of the morning.

 

WHAT WE FISHED FOR:  This was a multi-species trip focused on white bass,

WHERE WE FISHED: Stillhouse Hollow Reservoir

WHEN WE FISHED:  Tuesday morning, 14 August 2018

HOW WE FISHED:    Our approach from start to finish this morning was to use sonar to find fishable populations of white bass in the vicinity of large concentrations of bait, then to use downriggers to both catch them and to find active, bottom-oriented schools of white bass which we could hover atop of using the Minn Kota’s Spot Lock feature and catch them using tailspinners.  We enjoyed steady action all 4 hours with the first hour being slowest, with moderate action the second hour, the best action in the third and into the fourth hour, and a rapid slowdown in the final half of the last hour.  We landed only one 1-year-class white bass — all others were 2 and 3-year-class fish.  Of the 75 fish landed, 2 were freshwater drum, 4 were largemouth bass, and the balance were white bass.   We fished three distinct areas but found fish from 32-36 feet deep at all three areas as this is where the “band of life” at the top of the thermocline positioned this morning.

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES:    Stillhouse’s brief rise from the weekend’s rains ended today as evaporation took back over and reversed the rising water.  We’re now at 7.25 feet low.

TALLY: 75 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:   84.3F

Wind Speed & Direction: SSW wind at 8-9 through 8am, then ramping up another 3-4 mph to S13-14 thereafter.

Sky Conditions: ~25% cloud cover

Water Level: 7.25 feet low and now once again falling

GT = 40

Wx SNAPSHOT:  

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area  SH0040C thru 1569 thru SH0052C – first hour

**Area  1239 thru 1969 – second hour

**Area 1222-1970 – final 2 hours

 

 

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

A “Double Triple” for the DeLeon Brothers! — 55 Fish

WHO I FISHED WITH: This morning I fished a Ft. Hood SKIESUnlimited program trip with the DeLeon brothers, Uziah and Santino, who are headed to 6th and 3rd grade, respectively.  The boys were accompanied by their mom, Rhoda, who signed the boys up for this “Fishing 101” activity from among the many options open to military and DoD kids through the SKIESUnlimited program.  If interested, contact Brenda Brown at 254.287.4592.

From left: Uziah and Santino DeLeon with a “double triple” — that’s 2 sets of 3 fish — 6 fish total, all caught at the same time.  We found very aggressive white bass and largemouth bass feeding under terns in open water as heavily clouded grey skies continued for the fourth day in a row, keeping temperatures low and fish on the prowl.

WHAT WE FISHED FOR:  This was a multi-species trip focused on white bass and sunfish

WHERE WE FISHED: Stillhouse Hollow Reservoir

WHEN WE FISHED:  Monday morning, 13 August 2018

HOW WE FISHED:    We started the morning looking for topwater action where it had consistently appeared last week prior to my shift to Belton.  Unfortunately the recent rains had discolored the water a good bit, and the heavy early morning clouds kept the shallows fairly darkened, so, although we saw a few pods of fish feeding, this did not produce for us.  We moved on an did a bit of sunfishing which the boys had looked forward to on their previous trip with me, but which rain had prevented.  After an “intro” to sunfish in which the boys landed 4 fish, we were headed to a second sunfishing area under still-murky conditions thanks to the lingering cloud cover, when I spotted a flock of about a dozen terns feeding over top of topwater feeding whites and largemouth.  This was just right for downrigging.  Over about a 75 minute span, this area produced exactly 40 white bass and a single largemouth bass, included 4 sets of triples (3 fish at a time on a single rod’s 3-armed umbrella rig).  We left about 45 minutes at the end of the trip to do some more sunfishing during which time we landed 10.  We wrapped up right at 10a so Santiago could make it to on-post swimming lessons on time.

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES:    

TALLY: 55 fish, all caught and released

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time: 6:45a

End Time: 10:00a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 73F

Water Surface Temp:   84.1F

Wind Speed & Direction: Calm through 8:40a, then a SW wind tapering up to 9 and slowly shifting through S. to ESE while maintaining a steady velocity.

Sky Conditions: 100% cloud cover

Water Level: 7.19 feet low and rising thanks to locally heavy rains over the weekend

GT = 0

Wx SNAPSHOT:  

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area 201 and 203 for sunfish

**Area 1043 to 1512 to 056 – areas triangulating aggressive white bass and largemouth bass feeding under terns in 27-33 feet of water.  Caught via downrigging

 

 

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

Zack Marhover: Recipient of most recent free SKIFF program fishing trip — 50 fish caught!

WHO I FISHED WITH: This morning I fished a SKIFF (Soldiers’ Kids Involved in Fishing Fun) program trip with Zack Marhover, age 14, the son of Lieutenant Colonel Eric Marhover.  Zack will head into the 8th grade where he enjoys participating in band and robotics classes.  LTC Marhover has been in the military a total of 28 years and is currently the battalion commander for a military police battalion based at Fort Hood, but which is spread over all of the SW United States.  As a result, he spends about 40% of his time on temporary duty assignments away from Fort Hood and his family, doing his best to be home on the weekends.  Since we planned this trip many weeks in advance, his travel status was unknown at the time of the reservation, and, as it turned out, he was able to join Zack for this experience this past Saturday, although he did not wet a line.

SKIFF serves to put the kids of soldiers on the water at times when duty pulls parents away from their families.  Begun in 2009, SKIFF offers trips free of charge to any military family wherein kids are separated from their parent due to that parent’s military obligations from short-term commitments like gunnery or field time at Ft. Hood, to lengthy deployments, and anything in between.  Simply call me, Bob Maindelle, at 254.368.7411 to reserve a date.

 

14-year-old Zack Marhover caught 50 fish this past Saturday morning during a SKIFF trip provided free of charge to kids who are separated from their parents due to those parents’ military duties.

 

WHAT WE FISHED FOR:  This was a multi-species trip focused on white bass

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED:  Saturday morning, 11 August 2018

HOW WE FISHED:   Although the timing of today’s bite was very similar to yesterday’s (i.e. light surface action up shallow for the first hour, a lull in the second hour, and an open-water surface feed for the 3rd and 4th hour, the intensity of today’s bite was much less than yesterday’s.  I suspect that this is because we had a weather change on Friday, and only a continuation of that weather on this day.  Still, there were lots of fish feeding on the surface making for simple fishing for my young client.

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES:   Today’s bite followed the same timing as yesterday’s, but lacked the intensity.

TALLY: 50 fish, all caught and released

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time: 6:20a

End Time: 10:00a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 73F

Water Surface Temp:   84.1F

Wind Speed & Direction: Calm through 8:40a, then a SW wind tapering up to 9 and slowly shifting through S. to ESE while maintaining a steady velocity.

Sky Conditions: 100% cloud cover

Water Level: 7.75 feet low and rising thanks to locally heavy rains overnight from Fri. to Sat.

GT = 20

Wx SNAPSHOT:  

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area  1924 thru 903 – downrigging and casting to surface feeders lightly feeding under low light conditions

**Area  B0098C thru B0099C – open water surface feeding over a 2 hour span

 

 

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

Winds from the West, Fish Bite Best — 208 Fish @ Belton

WHO I FISHED WITH: This morning I fished with Mr. Mike White and his friend, Mr. Chris Lester, both returning clients who first came out with me last fall just as the water temperature was beginning to fall steadily.  When Mike booked the trip about a month ago, I let him know that summer fishing, although fairly predictable, does not typically yield the numbers that fall and spring trips to.  He acknowledged this and let me know that his aim was to better understand the tactics needed to pursue summertime fish.

 

Chris Lester with our largest fish of the trip.  With 208 fish landed, only about 6 were hybrid, and just one of those was of legal size.  The white bass certainly dominated the surface bite today.

 

The white bass we caught today were primarily 2-year class fish (~70%) with the balance being smaller 1-year class fish like the one in Mike’s (green shirt) left hand.

WHAT WE FISHED FOR:  This was a multi-species trip focused on white bass

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED:  Friday morning, 11 August 2018

HOW WE FISHED:   We spent our first 60 minutes throwing popping corks to distinct, small groups of fish (perhaps 30ish in number), which were showing themselves on the surface as they chased shad under low light conditions from 6:30a to 7:30a.  We put 24 fish in the boat during this time and then encountered a lull as the winds were calm and the sky darkened as a band of storms, of which we were on the eastern edge, moved from south to north.  Things were very quiet for about an hour as this weather change occurred, with little topwater action other than by occasional rough fish rolling.  Then, it happened … the winds began to blow from the west, going from 0 to ~12 mph over the next 45 minutes.  As that significant environmental event took place, a massive open water white bass feed began to take place involving thousands of fish spread over many acres.  Groups of several hundred fish would drive young-of-the-year threadfin shad to the surface and feed on them for as long as the baitfish stayed pinned there — typically for 6-10 minutes at a time.  At any given time, 6-10 pods of such activity could be seen across the lake’s surface.   Once the baitfish escaped, another melee would erupt nearby, and so it went until the last shad was consumed at around 11:10am.  During this time, Mike and Chris landed exactly 208 fish including just a handful of short hybrid and one legal hybrid.  Although the popping cork rig produced well, a long-casting 8′ spinning rod combined with a Pflueger Arbor reel and a compact 3/8 oz. slab in a natural baitfish color performed even better primarily because the longer casts provided for more coverage and greater standoff distance from these fish which definitely left about a 40′ “buffer” around the boat when it was being propelled by the trolling motor.

OBSERVATIONS/NOTES:  This was one of the two most massive feeds I’ve ever witnessed on Lake Belton in 26 years of fishing this body of water.  Spectacular!!  After the west wind began, no more rain fell, although the skies were heavy and grey and it remained quite humid.  All storms passed to our west and from S. to N.

TALLY: 208 fish, all caught and released

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time: 6:20a

End Time: 11:10a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 73F

Water Surface Temp:   83.4F

Wind Speed & Direction: Calm through 8:40a, then a W wind tapering up from nil to 12mph over about 40 minutes, then scaling back to ~8mph

Sky Conditions: 100% cloud cover

Water Level: 7.88 feet low

GT = 35

Wx SNAPSHOT:  

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area  793 – 1791 topwater action under low light early morning conditions

**Area  174-1463-1391 extended topwater action over open water in conjunction with a weather change

 

 

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