WHO I FISHED WITH: This past Friday morning, November 30th, I fished with Mike and Tammy Thompson.  Their daughter, Elizabeth, got them a fishing gift certificate for Christmas last year and today was the day they decided to cash that in. Mike retired from Extraco bank and Tammy retired from the Texas Dept. of Transportation.  They spoke highly of their church, First United Methodist Church in Belton, where they serve together as volunteers in a food bank ministry.

We originally scheduled for this past Tuesday, but the 30F sunrise temperature forecast for that day deterred them.  In the mean time, multiple additional Belton Lake boat ramps opened, and I was able to fish with them on Lake Belton.  This was my first trip with clients since the flooding began in mid-October.

Mike and Tammy Thompson enjoyed the balmiest day in quite some time on newly reopened Lake Belton.  Tammy took this hybrid on a 3/4 oz. slab this past Friday, November 30th.  By trip’s end the couple had amassed a catch of 80 fish.

PHOTO CAPTION #2: White bass have begun to orient on bottom in non-current induced areas away from the river channel.
PHOTO CAPTION #3: A bumper crop of drum is present on Lake Belton, possibly a positive side-effect of the zebra mussel invasion.

WHAT WE FISHED FOR:  This was a multi-species trip focused on white bass.  We also landed numerous drum, hybrid striped bass, and largemouth bass.


WHEN WE FISHED: Friday morning,  November 30, 2018


The first fish we located were on bottom in about 28 feet of water. I saw a few birds tentatively searching in this area and suspected that bait, if not game fish, were present. We started off with an aggressive vertical tactic which I call “smoking.”

This was too aggressive as I noted the fish stayed put on bottom and did not respond well to this retrieve. We scaled back and slowed down and instead used a snap-jigging tactic. This got results, but we could see that there were many more fish present than were willing to feed, so we left this area to return to it later and moved on.

The second stop we made was under aggressively working birds — a mix of gulls and terns. About 30 birds fed on shad forced to the top of the water by white bass and hybrid striped bass beneath them.

These fish were obviously aggressive and did fall for the smoking tactic as we presented larger, ¾-ounce slabs to them.

 Once the birds settled down and rested on the water, we once again downshifted and used smaller baits with a snap-jigging tactic close to the bottom. Once the fish turned off to this, we moved.


We returned to the first area we had fished and found those fish now more cooperative, although there was no more helpful bird activity observed the remainder of the morning.

We continued using the snap-jigging tactic with lighter, 3/8-ounce slabs through the conclusion of our trip at around 11:45 a.m.

By that time, we had amassed a catch of 80 fish, including hybrid striped bass, white bass, largemouth bass and freshwater drum. Our largest fish was a 4-pound hybrid striper which fell for a ¾-ounce slab as we fished under the birds.

OBSERVATIONS:     Temperature profile from 0 to 60 feet:

0 feet 58.2F

5 feet 58.2F

10 feet 58F

15 feet 58F

20 feet 58F

25 feet 58F

30 feet 58F

35 feet 57.8F

40 feet 57.8F

45 feet 57.8F

50 feet 57.6F

55 feet 57.6F

60 feet 57.6F


TALLY: 80 fish, all caught and released



Start Time: 7:00a

End Time: 11:45a

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start:  67F

Water Surface Temp:  58.3F

Wind Speed & Direction:  SSE6-10

Sky Conditions:  100% grey cloud cover

Water Level: 4.37 feet high and falling by about 0.57 feet daily w/  ~3,700 cfs flow from dam

GT = 40

#WhiteBassFishing #LakeBelton #StillhouseHollow




**Area B0104C under low light –  snap-jigging

**Area B0105C/6C/7C – best action of the morning under birds ~35 minutes – snap-jigging

**Area B0104 to 1804 to 812 – snap-jigging

**Area B0108C – snap-jigging


Bob Maindelle, Belton Lake Fishing Guide

Full-time, Professional Fishing Guide and Owner of Holding the Line Guide Service

Belton Lake Fishing Guide, Stillhouse Hollow Fishing Guide


254.368.7411 (call or text)




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