WHO I FISHED WITH: This morning, Monday, November 30th, I fished with returning guest Shawn DeJournett and his father-in-law, Darryl Kaczmarczyk.
Shawn serves in law enforcement and is a U.S. Army veteran. Darryl works as a nurse at one of our local hospitals and is also a veteran of the U.S. Army.
I actually texted Shawn at the close of my trip on Saturday to let him know the extended forecast did not look good for today. Aside from the cold, which can be twarted by dressing well, we were due to have straight-line winds in excess of 18 mph with higher gusts. Fortunately, as the next 36 hours unfolded, the wind speed forecast reduced and the overnight low temperature increased.
As we met at the ramp this morning, it was 37F with a pretty good wind chill factor generated by a NNW wind at 16 mph — uncomfortable, but fishable, so, off we went! The conditions were “nautical” — high winds, cold temps, big waves and spray, but, life is short so we fished on!
PHOTO CAPTION #1: Shawn DeJournett with one of six hybrid striped bass we landed as we targeted abundant, aggressive white bass feeding heavily in open water this morning.
PHOTO CAPTION #2: Darryl Kaczmarczyk with another open water hybrid. This fish was already dripping milt.
WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake
WHEN WE FISHED: Monday (AM), 30 November 2020
HOW WE FISHED:
The fishing stayed strong today as the cold-front induced northwest winds reached a peak, plateaued, and then began to taper during our time on the water this morning. The fish were so active, in fact, that they were hard to pin down until late morning when they stopped moving as quickly as they did in the first 2.5 hours of the morning.
We were blessed to have helpful gull activity all morning, with the first terns showing up in the fish-eating bird mix for the first time this fall.
We found high numbers of mature white bass in three distinct areas this morning, each covering perhaps a football-field-sized area (about 1 1/3 acres), with each group moving generally into the wind at a slow pace.
Although I did bring some magnum Sassy Shad baits just for hybrid, the strong winds made me keep them idle and opt for the vertical presentation made with my MAL Lure rods, which accounted for 100% of our fish this morning.
We used Garmin LiveScope in conjunction with the MAL Lures to capitalize on both bottom-hugging and suspended fish using a smoking tactic. No adjustment to the standard tactic was called for due to the minor water surface temperature drop experienced since Saturday.
Our tally of 152 fish included 6 hybrid striped bass, 3 largemouth bass, 1 smallmouth bass, 1 freshwater drum, and 142 white bass. Very few white bass (under 12 total), were below the legal length of 10″. This represented the greatest percentage of legal white bass as a percentage of the whole white bass catch I’ve seen thus far since turnover.
See the MAL Lure here: https://whitebasstools.com/
See tutorial video on how to work the MAL Lure here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jDSvfXgrAUE&t=239s
TALLY: 152 fish caught and released
OBSERVATIONS: Once again, the gulls fed hard for 4 solid hours, pointing the way to fish all morning. The fish were moving actively and rapidly, necessitating “spot-hopping” routinely in the first 2.5 hours.
Start Time: 7:30A
End Time: 11:45A
Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 37F
Elevation: 0.83 low with a 0.03’ 24-hour drop and 34 CFS flow thru the dam
Water Surface Temp: 62.1F
Wind Speed & Direction: NNW16 at trip’s start, slowly tapering to NNW13 by trip’s end
Sky Condition: Bluebird skies as cold front was passing through
Moon Phase: Full moon
GT = 0
AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:
**Area triangulated by B0042G/B0098C/B0026C; all fish on MAL Lures (SP)
**Area 1205 through 152; all fish on MAL Lures (SP)
**Area B0040G thru BG0026; ; all fish on MAL Lures (SP)
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) Website: www.HoldingTheLineGuideService.com
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