On Thursday, May 12th, I fished with Mr. Steve Niemeier and two of his grandchildren, 11-year old Caleb Fowler, and 8-year-old Macy Fowler. The grandkids all call Steve “Baboo” which is an African word for grandfather which Steve picked up on one of his many mission trips to that continent.
From left: 11-year-old Caleb Fowler, Steve “Baboo” Niemeier, and 8-year-old Macy Fowler with two Belton Lake hybrid the kids landed just seconds apart during a very aggressive feed spurred on by grey clouds and a westerly wind in advance of stormy weather.
As they walked from the minivan down to my boat, Caleb, decidedly NOT a morning person, was still shaking out the cobwebs, while Macy was bubbling with anticipation, and Steve was just glad to be away from the office with the two of them for a few hours.
Fishing was pretty straightforward today thanks to slowly but steadily increasing water temperatures pushing the fish to feed routinely for the first 4 hours of light and the last 3 hours of light.
We fished only 2 areas this morning catching mainly legal hybrid stripers at our first stop, and a mixed bag of white bass and hybrid stripers in the 1, 2, and 3 year classes at our second stop. All of our fish were caught on live shad.
The kids both came to appreciate how necessary it is to keep a constant vigil over the rod when bait fishing. Fish can attack a bait, move off with it, pull the rod tip down, and tear the bait off the hook, thus allowing the tip to return to its original position, all in a matter of about 2 seconds. If you are snacking, looking away, or otherwise distracted, an opportunity can be lost. This point was driven home during the last hour of the trip as the kids’ attention span began to wane and Steve began to outcatch the kids three or four fish to their one.
As we approached the end of the morning bite, around 10:45, a storm cell to the west which I’d been keeping an eye on via my smartphone for over 3 hours, was getting a bit too close for comfort. We pulled lines in right at 10:45 and were back to the launch site by 10:55. As my crew was leaving the parking lot, the first drops of rain began falling, and, after going through all of my post-trip chores, I got a good dousing complete with thunder and lightning on my drive home.
We finished our morning with 74 fish landed, including a personal best (largest fish of her life) for Macy.
TALLY = 74 fish, all caught and released
Start Time: 6:50a
End Time: 11:00a
Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 72F
Water Surface Temp: 74.2F
Wind Speed & Direction: Winds were W11-12
Sky Conditions: 100% grey cloud cover.
Water Level: 7.10 feet above full pool with a fall of 0.20 feet in the last 24 hours with a release of ~4890cfs ongoing.
GT = 20
AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:
**Area 1294 – 80% keeper hybrid on live shad
**Area 1298 – mixed sizes of whites and hybrid on live shad
Owner, Holding the Line Guide Service
254.368.7411 (call or text)