I fished with Englishman Richard H. today, originally from Sheffield, U.K., and his son, Alec. I suppose, then, that I could blame the London fog we had shrouding us the first two hours of the day on these chaps! Indeed, I’ve never in 18 years fishing on Belton and Stillhouse found fish feeding aggressively during foggy conditions and today was no exception. We struggled to boat just 4 fish in the first 2 hours of the day downrigging between Areas 502 and 509, and near Area 133. However, by around 9:30 things started “looking brighter” literally and figuratively.
Alec boated this 1.50 pound, 14 7/8 inch white bass to clinch the Jr. Angler lake record for Belton Lake, previously set in August of 2008 (1.28 pounds)
Not to be outdone, Richard landed our largest fish of the day, a nice 3.75 pound hybrid that fell for a TNT 180 in the 3/4 oz. size.
Around this time, we headed to Area 551 to 132 and looked along the long east-west breakline here separating 20 foot water from 30 foot water. Sonar showed some interesting signs on bottom near Area 132, so we hovered in this general area and began to pick up fish with a jigging approach. Soon, we began to see action on top (BA: 20HG) and the action ramped up, peaked, and tailed off over a 75 minute period. During this time, we primarily used a smoking technique with both 3/4 and 3/8 oz. TNT 180 slabs to boat 61 fish including a 3.75 pound hybrid striped bass landed by Richard, and a pending new Junior Angler Belton Lake record white bass landed by Alec. It tipped the scales at 1.50 pounds on a certified Boga Grip and measured 14 7/8 inches (mouth shut, tail pinched as required by TPWD). When the smoking tactic cooled off, we jigged, and when the jigging tailed off, the bite was over in this locale so we continued the search.
I looked over one deepwater area, but this entire week deepwater has just not been holding fish. Most all action I’ve found all week has been in 27 feet or less.
We headed to the vicinity of Area 689 and were blessed to discover some topwater action taking place here, too (BA: 5 HG) with fish chasing shad ~3 inches or more in length to the surface and popping at them. These fish were, on average, a bit smaller (~11 inches or so) than we’d found previously, but hit better on the larger 3/4 oz. TNT 180 as it did a better job of imitating the bait they were feeding upon.
By the time this brief flurry had come to a close, we’d boated an additional 18 fish for our efforts. It was now around 11:30 and I didn’t hold much hope that we’d see any more action from this point through midday, so we called it a great morning with 83 fish boated including the new lake record, and headed back to the dock.
TALLY = 83 FISH, all caught and released
Start Time: 7:05a
End Time: 11:30a
Air Temp: 58F at trip’s start.
Water Surface Temp: ~62.9F
Wind: Winds were S at 7 at sunrise, increasing to S11 for the remainder of the trip.
Skies: Skies were foggy until around 9:15, then went 80% cloudy.