A Day of Firsts for Drake and Grayson — 71 Fish — Stillhouse Hollow — 25 July 2011

This morning I fished with Mr. Rob R. of Round Rock, and his two sons, Drake and Grayson.

From L. to R., Rob, Drake and Grayson show the best 6 of the 68 white bass we boated today. We also landed 2 largemouth and a drum.

Though not yet in their teens, both boys have had a great variety of angling experiences from bank fishing ponds for catfish to pursuing offshore grouper and kingfish in the Gulf and the Caribbean. Despite all the experience, neither boy had ever landed a white bass before, and with a strong white bass bite going on at Stillhouse right now, we set out to change that statistic. We met before sunrise, did some practice casting in case we found topwater, then we did some practice jigging in case we found white bass near bottom, then we set out on the hunt for fish.

We encountered abundant, scattered, suspended white bass along the contour running from Area 258 to Area 040 to Area 854. From sunrise to exactly 8:57am we boated 24 fish, including 23 white bass and one keeper largemouth bass.

At exactly 8:57, I spotted the first (and only) school of congregated, bottom-oriented white bass that we would find this trip. I buoyed them and we went to work with our TNT 180 slabs. In about 35 minutes’ time, with all three of my guests boating fish each time they jigged, we took our fish count from 24 up to 69. Of these 45 fish, 44 were white bass and 1 was a freshwater drum. This was our second “first” of the trip, as Drake had never boated a drum before, so, he got to add another notch to his species belt with that accomplishment While the bite was hot, I had all three using slabs. When the intensity began to fade, I left the boys using the slabs, and had dad turn to a “blasting” technique to try to coax fish in from around the perimeter of the boat to the boys’ slabs. This extended the bite a bit and netted us a few extra fish. This bite took place on top of Area 854.

Once this bite died, the morning bite was all but over. We returned to downrigging and combed back over this area taking only one lone largemouth (a short fish) for our efforts.

We packed up and headed to between Areas 855 and 495 and, despite seeing tremendous amounts of bait, came up with only two short whites to close out our trip with a tally of 71 fish.

TALLY = 71 FISH, all caught and released


Start Time: 6:30a

End Time: 10:50a

Air Temp: 78F at trip’s start.

Water Surface Temp: ~85.2F

Wind: Winds were SW5 at trip’s start turning WSW and increasing slightly to 8mph near trip’s end.

Skies: Skies were ~10% cumulus clouds on a blue sky. A grey cloud bank in the east obscured the sunrise for ~15 minutes, then cleared to bright and near-cloudless for the remainder of the trip.