WHO I FISHED WITH: This morning, Monday, October 18, I welcomed back the Gann family from Academy, Texas. Roy and Julie treated their son, Austin, to a fishing trip in celebration of his 14th birthday. Joining Austin was his buddy, Harley Higgins, age 13, also of Academy.
The Ganns first came out with me back in mid-August this year after we got acquainted over the donation of a fishing trip to the Academy FFA Boosters, which Austin is a part of. After pizza at home last night with family and friends, it was an early wake-up on this school holiday to a 48F morning and a boatload of white bass to be caught.
My crew of four would land 236 fish this morning. Details follow…
My next three openings will be on 1, 2, and 6 December. Weekday mornings are always best.
PHOTO CAPTION: From left: Roy & Julie Gann, Harley Higgins, and Austin Gann, all out on the water in celebration of Austin’s 14th birthday.
PHOTO CAPTION: The MAL Heavy Lures were a good match size-wise and color-wise for the threadfin shad the white bass were gorging on today. On top is the MAL Heavy with white blade/chartreuse tail used for horizontal work, and beneath it is the MAL Heavy with silver blade and white tail for vertical tactics. The shad was regurgitated by one of the white bass we landed.
WHERE WE FISHED: Lake Belton
WHEN WE FISHED: Monday (AM), 18 October 2021
HOW WE FISHED:
It was pretty chilly this morning, in fact, this is the first time I’ve worn long pants since late April or early May. The air was at 48F, while the water was around 76F, thus causing “sea smoke” to form to about 80 yards above the lake’s surface. This was thin enough to let some light through, but just thick enough to make fast boat travel hazardous. No matter … we searched carefully near our launch point and found our first bunch of catchable white bass, 41 to be exactly, chasing shad in the lower two-thirds of the water column and occasionally breaking the surface as they chased even farther.
We would go on to fish a total of six additional locations. The fishing stayed good until the low clouds burned off. Then, with bright, clear skies and little wind, things got slower, although we still caught fish steadily.
Around 9:30 the first wind stiff enough to ripple the surface and keep it that way began, and, from that point on, the fish loosened up, fed hard, and provided my crew with some high-numbers fishing and continuous action.
At each place we fished, save the last, we began fishing MAL Heavy Lures with silver blades and white tails vertically, then changed over the MAL Heavy Lures with white blades and chartreuse tails for our horizontal work once the vertical bite slacked off. We typically kept fishing horizontally once we began, except when an obvious, sizeable school of white bass showed on Garmin LiveScope. When this happened, we’d fish them until they disappeared (typically 2-4 minutes later), then returned to horizontal work until another school showed beneath us, and so on.
The best run of catching came right before the fish quit feeding altogether. At our final stop, which we fished for only about 25-30 minutes, we landed 72 fish with all four anglers catching faster than I could run around and take their fish off for them.
We finished up with 236 fish. As our trip concluded, Harley told the Gann’s he was going to ask for a fishing trip for his 14th birthday in April, and, he told Austin that if it worked out, he’d be invited!!
Of the 236 fish landed, 227 were white bass, with 1 largemouth bass and 8 juvenile hybrid striped bass in the mix.
MAL Lure fishing tutorials:
MAL Lures are found here: https://whitebasstools.com/
TALLY: 236 fish caught and released
OBSERVATIONS: Return of south winds following post-frontal calm meant excellent fishing. We spotted this fall’s first migrating bald eagle. It was a juvenile, with a fully white head but a mottled brown/white tail. Lots of ospreys are also showing up.
Start Time: 7:10A
End Time: 11:30A
Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 48F
Elevation: 1.01 feet low, 0.03 fall, 58 CFS flow
Water Surface Temp: 76.85F
Wind Speed & Direction: Light S winds under 5 through 9:30, then picking up quickly to S9 thereafter.
Sky Condition: Clear skies all morning.
Moon Phase: Waxing gibbous moon at 96% illumination.
GT = 0
AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:
**Area B0101G – 41 fish, MAL Heavy vert. & horiz.
**Area B0102G – 39 fish, MAL Heavy vert. & horiz.
**Area 164 – 35 fish, MAL Heavy vert. & horiz.
**Area 1658 – 32 fish, MAL Heavy vert. & horiz.
**Area 409/1679 -17 fish, MAL Heavy vert. & horiz.
**Area B0186C – 72 fish, MAL Heavy vert. only
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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