WHO I FISHED WITH: This past Sunday evening I fished with returning guests Brian Parker and Lucindy Packer, accompanied by Brian’s niece, Jamie Johnson from North Carolina, and Brian’s sister, Ruth Guy, from Florida.
Most of you know I don’t fish on Sundays, but, I made an exception for Brian. He scheduled this trip some time ago in conjunction with his relatives’ travel plans, and we were supposed to fish on Saturday morning. High winds and 0.75 inches of rainfall on Saturday forced a cancellation, and Jamie and Ruth were due to depart today, Monday, May 18th.
So, after church I grabbed lunch, got in a quick nap, and loaded up the boat to take on the Sunday afternoon recreational traffic at Lake Belton.
Despite the clear, bright skies, and light, northerly winds, the fishing actually exceeded my expectations.
PHOTO CAPTION: From left: Ruth, Jamie, Brian, and Lucindy, each with a stocky Lake Belton white bass taken via a smoking technique using 3/4 oz. Hazy Eye Slabs.
WHEN WE FISHED: 17 May, 2020, PM
HOW WE FISHED: Due to the bright, near-calm conditions, I looked as deep as I could find life on the sonar — just shy of 50′ — for starters. Right off the bat I located a bottom-oriented school of white bass holding on a breakline. We stopped atop them and tried vertical jigging, but they were locked down tight. So, given the fish were spread over an area perhaps 40 yards in diameter, I gave downrigging a try with a single 3- armed umbrella rig. We put 8 white bass in the boat, including a triple, in 4 passes over the area before the fish dispersed.
We moved on and continued looking for fish, and were fortunate to essentially drive right to a very active school of white bass. We got on top of these fish and never left them until sunset shut them down, only repositioning a few yards at a time if the bite started to wane. Once everyone got the hang of the smoking with the 3/4 oz. Hazy Eye Slabs we were using with a smoking tactic, I layered in the use of LiveScope and it was like kids in a candy store. All of the ladies were uber-competitive, calling out their individual tallies each time another fish was landed.
As the sun set in the west, this deep-water bite quickly ended. By this time we’d amassed a catch of 104 fish.
TALLY: 104 fish caught and released
Start Time: 4:20P
End Time: 8:20P
Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 79F
Elevation: 0.48′ high, 0.05′ rise, 17 CFS flow
Water Surface Temp: 74.5F
Wind Speed & Direction: Light, under 3mph from NW entire trip
Sky Conditions: Blue sky with no cloud cover
GT = 215
AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:
**Area vic 1743 – 8 whites on downrigger
**Area vic B0149C – 3 solid hours of white bass action on smoked slabs – 3 short hops
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)