WHO I FISHED WITH:  On Thursday, June 1, I fished with first-time guests Bret, Grayson, and Bryson Necessary.

Brett is a civil engineer working for MW Builders, and the boys, ages 17 and 15 respectively, are working their way through high school.

Here is how the fishing went…


Here’s an up-to-date calendar so you can check availability: https://holdingthelineguideservice.com/available-dates.php

Next available dates are July 5, 6, 10 (all AM)


PHOTO CAPTION: From left: Grayson, Bret, and Bryson Necessary with a sampling of the white bass they caught and released from Lake Belton.  Imitating young-of-the-year shad was critical as the fish are very focused on those small baitfish.



WHEN WE FISHED: Thursday, 01 June 2023 (AM)

HOW WE FISHED: We got going at 6:15 AM this morning, anticipating a low-light top water feed.

Note that this is not the same sort of topwater as we had just a short week ago. That topwater at that time consisted of gamefish pushing adult shad, which were spawning, toward the shore and toward the surface to trap and eat them.

A rapid transition is now taking place with gamefish focused on the very small young of the year shad. These shad are generally located away from the bank and the fish feeding on them are much harder to visually detect, because the shad are so easily slurped in that they require very little effort on the gamefishes’ part to overtake and ingest. Thus, no, splashing, typically accompanies this sort of feeding.

I checked several areas before finding enough topwater action to keep us in business. Once located, I used a combination of drifting with the wind, repositioning with Spot-Lock, and the jogging function on my trolling motor to keep my three anglers within a reasonable casting distance of the schooling fish. Our 100th fish came over the side at 8:20 AM. These fish all came from a roughly 300 yard area.

These fish were all taken on the new MAL Mini Rig.  This consists of a substantially downsized MAL Lure designed to imitate small, young-of-the-year baitfish.  Ahead of the small MAL is a 3/4 oz. weight to provide enough heft to cast the rig out and beyond the feeding fish so the retrieve can be made through the entire school.

PHOTO CAPTION: The MAL Mini, designed to imitate young-of-the-year shad, shown below three (of 8) shad regurgitated by a single white bass during this morning’s trip.

Once the gray, low cloud cover began to burn off, this feed ended fairly quickly. I looked around for remnant schools, found one area which gave up six more fish, then that chapter closed for good around 8:40.

As the sky brightened, but still with fully clouded skies, adult threadfin shad began to get forced to the surface out in open water. The fish chasing these we’re doing so more aggressively and throwing some spray up into the air which could be seen with a trained eye.

Additionally, occasional visits out over open water by blue herons gave the general location of this sort of action away. I hustled to the scene of the crime, and we were able to finish out the remainder of our trip at first racing MAL Lures vertically through fish suspended around 20 to 25 feet deep, then, after sonar revealed these fish were pulling up even higher in the water column, we began to cast MAL Heavies, and let them sink to a four count before retrieving.

Once the winds calmed a bit, and the skies brightened as the clouds thinned, we begin counting down further to six, then eight, then once the fish got back down as low as the 20 foot mark, the feed came to an end.

The action had just about cooled by 9:50 AM, and by 10:10 AM we decided to give downrigging a try as a “mop up“ effort. The fish were shut down hard enough by this time that the downrigging did not even produce. We called it a day right at 10:20 with 169 fish landed including two blue catfish, one largemouth bass, and the remainder of white bass.

TALLY: 169 fish caught and released

Find the entire family of MAL Lures  here: https://whitebasstools.com/

OBSERVATIONS:   Generally speaking, fish are heavily focused now on young-of-the-year shad, thus, downsized baits are a must.



Start Time: 6:15A

End Time: 10:20A

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 68F

Elevation: 12.64 feet low, 24 CFS flow, a 0.01′ fall over the past 24 hours

Water Surface Temp: ~78.4F on the surface.

Wind Speed & Direction: SE6 all morning

Sky Condition: 100% grey cloud cover until ~8:20, then rapidly dissipating to blue skies and 30% white cloud cover.

Moon Phase: Waxing gibbous moon at 91% illumination.

GT = 100




Area vic B0202C thru 1796 — 100 fish by 8:20AM on MAL Mini Rigs

Area 1795 – 6 fish on MAL Mini Rigs

Area vic B0092G – 63 fish on a combination of smoking and counting down MAL Heavies



Bob Maindelle

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

E-mail: Bob@HoldingTheLineGuideService.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/bobmaindelle

Twitter: www.twitter.com/bobmaindelle

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