A Bear Market — 16 Fish, Belton, 28 May

This past Saturday, May 28, I fished with Mr. Greg Meyer, his wife Daryl, their daughter Makenzie, and Makenzie’s friend Kynesha Nisbett. Greg serves as the Assistant Athletics Director for Development for the Baylor Bear Foundation at Baylor University.  He contacted me hoping we could connect his family with some hard-pulling hybrid stripers.


Makenzie scored our first “keeper” hybrid (18 or more inches in length) of the trip on a live shad in 28 feet of water.


Go Mom!!  Daryl saved the best for last, taking this hybrid striper, which went just shy of 4 pounds, toward the end of our morning on the water.


Shortly after Makenzie broke the ice, Kynesha (decidedly NOT a morning person) landed this hybrid and, if I’m not mistaken, spoke her first word of the morning at about the same time!
Thanks to severe weather the previous Thursday, I missed fishing that morning due to lightning, and had not fished on Belton since the previous Saturday. Over that timeframe there had been much environmental change. We got a tremendous amount of rain, the Leon River went out of its banks, the Corps of Engineers stopped releasing water, and Belton Lake began to rise very quickly.

All of this environmental change seems to have thrown the fish into a funk. I spent over an hour beginning at 6:30 AM searching for fish in the main basin, and found nothing that led me to even put a line in the water.

I decided to head up into one of Belton’s tributaries, and we were able to find a few fish, but never really got a solid, continuous bite going. The fish have definitely moved up shallower, as has the bait, and what we caught came in dribs and drabs of 2 to 3 fish at a time with occasional singles mixed in. On several occasions we had large schools of fish, which I suspected were white bass, show directly beneath the boat on sonar. Despite working our slabs immediately in the midst of them, and seeing the slab mixed in the presence of these fish on sonar, we simply did not get hit.

When fish did respond to live bait, I watched sonar as the hooked fish were fought to the boat, and never once did any schoolmates follow a hooked fish up off bottom.  I checked in with fellow guide, Charles Howard and with several Belton “regulars”, and they all reported soft results during this same time frame.

I extended our trip for 2 additional hours hoping a wind shift or light level change would help things out, but that was not to be.  When all was said and done we had landed just 16 fish today with 14 of them coming on live bait, one on a downrigged umbrella rig, and one on an “eased” slab.

I appreciate Greg’s approach to things — seeing that we were having a slow day, he passed all of the fish that hit on his rod off to one of the ladies.


TALLY = 16 fish, all caught and released



Start Time: 6:30a

End Time:  12:30a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 67F

Water Surface Temp:  75.4F

Wind Speed & Direction:  Winds SSE7-8

Sky Conditions:  100% grey cloud cover for the entire trip.

Water Level: ~8 feet above full pool with no release of water currently ongoing.

GT = 20






**Area 1629-1672 live shad

**Area 1573 live shad


Bob Maindelle

Owner, Holding the Line Guide Service

254.368.7411 (call or text)

Website: www.HoldingTheLineGuideService.com

E-mail: Bob@HoldingTheLineGuideService.com

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