WHO I FISHED WITH: This morning I fished with Adan Tijerina, accompanied by his mom, Mandie Tijerina, who serves on active duty in the U.S. Army. Mandie scheduled this trip for her son through the Ft. Hood SKIESUnlimited Program, which offers activities of all sorts, from art to cooking to dance to martial arts and more, to military and DOD kids, all led by qualified, background-checked professionals who enjoy introducing kids to their area of interest. The activity I lead is called “Fishing 101”, and it is a 3.5 to 4 hour introduction to fishing by boat just right for kids from Kindergarten right up through high school.
Those interested in such activities may go see Brenda Brown, Instructional Program Specialist, Child & Youth Services in Bldg. 121, 761st Tank Battalion Ave., Room 145, Fort Hood, Texas, or visit with her by phone at 254-287-4592.
Adan really picked up on detailed things very quickly, which allowed him to do far better than most 7-year-olds I have aboard. Once I told him and then showed him something, he was off and running on his own and doing well.
After starting our trip with a run of 23 sunfish, our first shot at downrigging yielded these much larger fish (one is a white bass and the other is a largemouth), which came as a double (2 fish on the same 3-armed umbrella rig at the same time). Adan didn’t leave his jacket on for very long as he worked up a sweat reeling in the big ones.
WHAT WE FISHED FOR: This was a multi-species trip focused on sunfish & white bass.
WHERE WE FISHED: Stillhouse Hollow Reservoir
WHEN WE FISHED: Saturday morning, 08 September 2018
HOW WE FISHED: We began our morning up shallow fishing for sunfish with live bait under slipfloats. Adan landed the first 5 bites he got and I knew right then it was going to be a good trip because he was very coachable and listened very well. We went on to land 23 fish on slipfloats, including longear, green, and bluegill sunfish, as well as a single blacktail shiner. After this, we graduated up to “big fish” and caught them with a variety of tactics. First, we used downriggers to catch loosely schooled, suspended fish holding over top of bottom-oriented bait. Next, we found the gamefish getting more active and beginning to drive bait throughout the water column and to the surface. Once we observed plentiful topwater action, we sight-cast using shad imitating lure with enough heft to be cast long distances. We started out with me casting (accurately) and Adan reeling the bait in through the fish, then progressed to him casting. We also enjoyed a few episodes of working tailspinners for bottom-hugging fish, as well as casting those tailspinners horizontally for more white bass action.
OBSERVATIONS/NOTES: We experienced a long, aggressive topwater bite on a westerly wind with cloud cover in advance of a slow-moving cold front which shifted winds to the north around 5pm later the same day. As cloud cover increased and the skies darkened, the bite intensified; as clouds thinned and the skies brightened, the bite weakened. This went on and on from ~8:00 – 10:45am.
TALLY: 54 fish, all caught and released
Start Time: 7:00 am
End Time: 11:00 am
Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 75F
Water Surface Temp: 85.0F
Wind Speed & Direction: Winds were light SSW at sunrise under 4mph, then swung more and more westerly as the morning went by, ending up at WSW8 by trip’s end.
Sky Conditions: 100% cloud cover thru 9am, then thinning to ~70% with some blue sky showing thru the breaks.
Water Level: 8.05 feet low and rising slowly thanks to scattered storms and reduced evaporation
GT = 0
AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:
**Area 201 – 23 sunfish
**Area 1246-1241 – downrigging, sight-casting, and tailspinners for a mix of 30 largemouth and white bass
Bob Maindelle, Central Texas Fishing Guide
Owner, Holding the Line Guide Service
254.368.7411 (call or text)