WHO I FISHED WITH: This past Thursday morning I fished what has become an annual event with “The Chief”, including Temple Fire Chief Mitch Randles, Temple Police Chief Floyd Mitchell, and Belton Police Chief Gene Ellis. These public servants are all stand-up fellows, earnestly concerned about the communities they live in and serve, and have a love for their own families that is, unfortunately, uncommon these days. I look forward to this trip from the moment they schedule it a year in advance.
PHOTO CAPTION: Temple Fire Chief Mitch Randles with an early morning Lake Belton hybrid striped bass. A very short sunrise bite took place this morning, and then the impacts of the unstable weather kicked in an really ate into our hybrid catch this morning.
PHOTO CAPTION: Temple Police Chief Floyd Mitchell with one of a pair of hybrid he landed on live shad before a cold east wind put a damper on the hybrid bite.
PHOTO CAPTION: Belton Police Chief Gene Ellis with one of the six hybrid we landed on live shad Thursday morning before setting our sights on white bass.
WHAT WE FISHED FOR: Hybrid striped bass using live shad, and white bass using artificials
WHERE WE FISHED: Lake Belton
WHEN WE FISHED: 02 May 2019, AM
HOW WE FISHED: The hot streak of hybrid fishing which began on 21 April faltered today thanks to some “wonky” weather which entered our area in the form of an outflow boundary (think of a mini-cold front) oozing out of the significant weather system that slammed into the DFW/north Texas area the day before. Just hours before the trip there was thunder, lightning, and strong northwest winds. By 7am, the winds had gone easterly, there was a chill in the air, and the humid, tropical feel to the atmosphere was gone. In our first 3+ hours on the water, we managed only 6 legal hybrid and 2 white bass as we targeted hybrid with live shad.
Knowing that our results were driven by weather, not by failing to search where hybrid typically locate, I relocated us and, with the chiefs’ consent, shifted our focus to white bass using artificial lures. In under 90 minutes’ time were were able to make up for some lost time and succeeded in putting a final 42 fish in the boat, including 3 short hybrid and 39 white bass, all taken from about 26 feet of water on a combination of Hazy Eye Slabs with Hazy Eye Stinger hooks, and tailspinners.
As I bid farewell to the chiefs, I touched base with other anglers in my network. One retired gentleman who is a very good hybrid angler reported just one hybrid caught by around 10am, and, as of 12:30pm, one of the other guides I spoke with had yet to land a single legal hybrid. I noted that several other groups of anglers whom I typically see in pursuit of hybrid at this time of year were moving frequently in search of these weather-impacted fish.
OBSERVATIONS: Area SHAD014 produced only scant results this morning. A few shad moved onshore, then moved right back out and it was all over in a matter of minutes. I managed to get enough netted to make up for what we would use for the morning, but not much more. Also saw two small pods of shad, thanks to egret action, at SHAD022 , but did not attempt netting them.
TALLY: 50 fish caught and released – including 6 legal hybrid
Start Time: 7:00a
End Time: 12:15p
Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 63F
Elevation: 1.7 feet high with a 0.25 foot 24-hour drop, and a flow of 2700 cfs
Water Surface Temp: 69.1F
Wind Speed & Direction: ENE9-13mph
Sky Conditions: Grey skies with varying levels of cloud thickness through the morning
GT = 30
#WhiteBassFishing #LakeBelton #StillhouseHollow
AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:
**Area B0150C – low light bite for hybrid on live shad
**Area B0087C to B0088C – hybrid on live shad
**Area 708 to 788 – white bass on slabs/tailspinners
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)