WHO I FISHED WITH: This morning, Tuesday, August 11th, I fished with father-and-son team Kyle and Luke Halfmann of Rosebud, TX. This trip was a gift from Luke’s grandparents, Grammy and Papa, from this past Christmas.
Luke will turn 8 in September and had done a bit of fishing previously, primarily for small bass in a stock tank using closed-faced gear.
Kyle is a construction superintendent in the family’s building/real estate business.
Our first order of business was to get Luke up to speed on casting with spinning gear so he could fling his lures far enough to tempt the white bass feeding on topwater which we were anticipating. After 4-5 tries he got the hang of this, so, we headed out just before sunrise to hunt fish.
PHOTO CAPTION #1: Kyle Halfmann and his son, Luke, caught and released 100 fish on Lake Belton during their 4-hour morning trip today.
WHEN WE FISHED: 11 August, 2020, AM
WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake
HOW WE FISHED: We began our day looking intently at the choppy water for telltale signs of white bass forcing shad to the surface. Although hard to see, they were present. We sight-cast to these fish before they left the surface about 15 minutes before the sun’s direct rays struck the water (a bit earlier than has been the case lately). During this feed, we landed 18 white bass.
Next, we moved to an area where white bass had begun “popcorn” schooling a bit earlier than usual. These fish would herd shad to the surface, feed there for just a few seconds, then sound. We made one attempt at getting to these and sight-casting, but quickly realized we’d seen multiple briefly-appearing schools from a distance, not just one school feeding at length. Understanding this situation, we went with a downrigging approach and put a steady stream of fish in the boat until the topwater action subsided and we moved on.
We hit a new patch of water this morning and, upon arrival, found fish holding in abundance on bottom in 26 to 30 feet of water. We evidently arrived just as the fish were beginning to feed here, as our first couple of attempts at Spot-Locking on the fish and working MAL Lures for them vertically got a so-so reception. As we stuck with it, the feeding intensity grew greater and greater, then peaked, then, around 9:55, began to fall off. By this time our tally stood at 70 fish, including 69 white bass and 1 largemouth. Both Kyle and Luke got the hang of using Garmin LiveScope in conjunction with their MAL Lures.
At seven years of age, Luke had hung in there longer than I though he would, but, he was definitely ready for a change of pace, so, we finished off the trip up in shallow water with some fast-paced sunfish action. Luke went through exactly 30 sunfish in as many minutes. We stopped fishing as the 100th fish was swung aboard.
TALLY: 100 fish caught and released
OBSERVATIONS: Low-light topwater fish were tough to see this morning due to the chop on the water. As occurred under similar conditions one day last week, the high winds correlated with a much shorter topwater bite, ending 12-15 minutes before the direct sun struck the water’s surface.
Start Time: 6:30A
End Time: 10:45A
Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 79F
Elevation: 1.92′ low, -0.06′ 24-hour change, 51 CFS flow
Water Surface Temp: 82.9F
Wind Speed & Direction: S12 before sunrise, increasing slowly to S14
Moon Phase: Last quarter with 52% illumination
GT = 30
AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:
**Area 010 to 1656 – drifting with the wind and sight-casting to low-light, topwater whites with MAL Lures; 18 fish
**Area vic B0030G – some sight-casting leading to downrigging; 8 fish
**Area vic B0172C through 691 through B0040C; 44 fish; most on MAL, then downrigger for mop up after the fish got finicky
**Area B0033G – 30 sunfish
Full-time, Professional Fishing Guide and Owner of Holding the Line Guide Service
Belton Lake Fishing Guide, Stillhouse Hollow Fishing Guide
254.368.7411 (call or text) Website: www.HoldingTheLineGuideService.com