A GIFT OF FISHING – 134 FISH @ BELTON

WHO I FISHED WITH: This past Monday morning, November 9th, I fished with two fellows who’ve been fishing buddies for decades: Brad Phillips and Jim Davis.

Brad ran an industrial supply business in Temple for many years and currently does home inspections.  Jim recently retired from the commercial banking business.

Brad received this trip in the form of a gift certificate from Linda Hankins, a close friend of his who operates the Belton Small Animal Clinic.

Linda, Jim, and Brad (and a few others) have travelled internationally to fish together through the years, and I enjoyed having experienced anglers aboard.

 

PHOTO CAPTION #1:  Jim Davis with one of the hybrid we took while fishing MAL Lures vertically primarily for deep white bass this morning.

PHOTO CAPTION #2:  This 4 lbs. largemouth was a bit of a surprise.  I came up off bottom after Brad’s MAL Lure as we fishing in 47 feet of water.  Most largemouth I take as bycatch when fishing for white bass tend to be smaller 1 to 2.5 pound class fish.

PHOTO CAPTION #3:  We caught a nice mess of white bass today, with above average-sized fish being the norm today as compared to the last 6 weeks’ worth of trips which have included a lot of small fish.

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED: Monday (AM), 09 November 2020

HOW WE FISHED:

As we got to know each other a bit at the start of the trip, I learned that Brad and Jim were both experienced, well-travelled anglers.  This actually concerned me a bit because oftentimes experienced anglers (and especially male experienced anglers) will not follow the guidance I provide very closely and wind up doing below average as a result.

Fortunately, when I tried to tactfully express this concern, both men understood what I was getting at, and had witnessed examples of other who failed to follow their guide’s suggestions do poorly.

Both fellows got the hang of using the MAL Lure very quickly and, as a result, they caught fish consistently from start to finish, landing 134 fish.

Things started a bit slow with a surprise layer of light fog settling in just before sunrise.  However, it dispersed quickly and we then got down to catching and stayed catching right up until the fish quit at around 11:30.

In all, we hit 5 areas, and each produced white bass which began on bottom (where we located them with sonar) and then climbed higher into the water column as the fish we caught created commotion and drew them upwards.

In all, we landed 134 fish, including 2 legal hybrid striped bass, 4 legal largemouth bass, and 129 white bass.

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: 134 fish caught and released

OBSERVATIONS:   No helpful bird activity witnessed this morning.

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time:  7:00A

End Time: 11:30A

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 64F

Elevation:  0.59′ low with a 0.01’ 24-hour drop and 0 CFS flow thru the dam

Water Surface Temp: 65.8F

Wind Speed & Direction:  Winds were ~S6 with the fog, then picked up to S12-14 after the fog lifted.

Sky Condition: Light fog developed right before sunrise, then remained for about 40 minutes thereafter.  When it dissipated, 100% grey skies remained then began clearing around 10AM.  By trip’s end we had 50% white cloud cover on blue skies.

Moon Phase: Waning gibbous at 40% illumination

GT = 40

Wx SNAPSHOT:

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area 1152; 49 fish on MAL Lures (SP)

**Area B0157C ; 6 white bass on MAL Lures (SP)

**Area B0051G; 20 white bass on MAL Lures (SP)

**Area vic 593; 14 white bass on MAL Lures (SP)

**Area vic 346; 45 white bass on MAL Lures (SP)

 

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

#WhiteBassFishing #LakeBelton #StillhouseHollow #BeltonFishingGuide #LakeBeltonFishingGuide

#BeltonLakeFishingGuide #stripers #stripedbassfishing #rockfish #sandbass #freshwaterfishing #fishing

#bass #bassfishing #whitebass #panfish #crappie #fishingonaboat #fishingtackle #fishinglife #fishingsport

#fishingaddict #fishingpicoftheday #fishingtime #fishinggear #fishingday

#Fitec

100 FISH & 1,000 QUESTION — CAMDEN THORNAL’S BIRTHDAY TRIP

WHO I FISHED WITH: This past Saturday morning, 07 November, I fished with the Thornal family — Eric and Michelle, and their kids, Camden and Maddie.  Michelle’s mom, Donna, also joined us.  This event was in celebration of Camden’s 8th birthday. It was a “Kids Fish, Too!” trip specifically for the kids, so the duration was shorter than for an adult trip, and only the kids did the fishing.

Camden, who, according to his mom, watches hours and hours of fishing videos on YouTube, must have asked a thousand questions this morning, but, his first one was the one that impressed me most.  He asked, “Will we be using the MAL Lure today?!?”.

I said, “Wow, you must have done your homework.”  He explained that his neighbor, Mr. Holle, had told him about the lure, after which Camden went and watched the tutorial video about that bait.

I greatly appreciate the Niemeier/Haberer crew referring this family my way.

 

PHOTO CAPTION #1: From left: That’s 8-year-old Camden, the birthday boy, joined by his mom and dad, Michelle and Eric, and by his 10-year-old sister, Maddie.  The kids landed exactly 100 fish this morning.

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED: Saturday (AM), 07 November 2020

HOW WE FISHED:

Well, we pulled a rabbit out of the hat this morning!  Under clear, calm conditions, we fished just two areas and pulled 91 white bass from Lake Belton in right at 3 hours’ time before the white bass put on the brakes.  This family must be living right, because those kind of results don’t typically happen with that kind of weather.

We found one small patch of white bass in about 36 feet of water just as the sun was rising and caught our first 8 fish there (at Area 1791) and, more importantly, got the kids trained up on how to use the MAL Lure, working the kinks out of their retrieve and cadence.  These fish only stayed fired up around 15 minutes or so.

We moved on and searched out a group of fish near the old river channel.  They were hard to made out on sonar because of the presence of timber, but, once we got them fire up, they stayed active for nearly 2 solid hours.  Many of these were small fish, but, with kids, quantity is much more important than quality, so we stuck with these fish as long as they lasted.  Once the kids showed they were able to use the MAL Lure  well, I layered in Garmin LiveScope, and, with mom and grandma Donna helping Maddie and Eric helping Camden.

By the time 9:45 rolled around, our fish count stood at 91 white bass and the fishing was dying hard.  I wasn’t sure if the shallows would warm up enough to draw sunfish given the cool overnight temperatures, but, I brought sunfish tackle so as to be able to offer the kids variety.

We put our final 30+ minutes into sunfishing up shallow and, by 10:35, put our 100th fish in the boat.  The 9 sunfish the kids landed included bluegill, green, and longear sunfish.

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: 100 fish caught and released

OBSERVATIONS:   No helpful bird activity witnessed this morning.

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time:  6:45A

End Time: 10:30A

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 50F

Elevation:  0.56′ low with a 0.02’ 24-hour drop and 0 CFS flow thru the dam

Water Surface Temp: 65.5F

Wind Speed & Direction:   Light and variable all morning

Sky Condition: Clear skies and calm winds all morning

Moon Phase: Waning gibbous at 61% illumination

GT = 0

Wx SNAPSHOT:

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area 1791; 8 white bass on MAL Lures (SP)

**Area 355/1152 ; 83 fish (1 largemouth, 82 white bass) on MAL Lures (SP)

**Area B0045G; 9 sunfish on bait under slipfloats

 

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

#WhiteBassFishing #LakeBelton #StillhouseHollow #BeltonFishingGuide #LakeBeltonFishingGuide

#BeltonLakeFishingGuide #stripers #stripedbassfishing #rockfish #sandbass #freshwaterfishing #fishing

#bass #bassfishing #whitebass #panfish #crappie #fishingonaboat #fishingtackle #fishinglife #fishingsport

#fishingaddict #fishingpicoftheday #fishingtime #fishinggear #fishingday

#Fitec

Josh “The Situation” Farris & the Bates Nissan Crew – 288 Fish

WHO I FISHED WITH: This past Friday morning I welcomed back the great crew of anglers (mainly) from Bates Nissan over in Killeen.  Clay O’Dell, the corporate manager, ramrodded the whole event and was joined by his brother, Robin O’Dell, a product specialist, and by Mike Farris, the parts director.  Robin’s son, Tyler, who owns a trucking company in the Cedar Park area joined us, as did a newbee — Mike’s 19-year-old son, Josh Farris.

Josh quickly earned the nickname “The Situation” for reasons only previously known to the rest of the crew, but now herein shared freely with all of you:  tangled lines, fish reeled in too far, more tangled lines, being the youngest guy in the group and therefore the butt of most jokes, etc., etc.   All of this builds character on one’s journey from occasional fisherman to accomplished angler.  Josh made big strides this trip toward this end (according to him!).

All kidding aside, Josh was very conscientious about following my guidance for working the MAL Lure consistently all morning, and his results were right up there with everyone else’s.  To his credit, Josh landed the first hybrid striped bass of his life toward the close of this trip.

PHOTO CAPTION #1: This was my crew for 06 November: from the back, forward:  Josh Farris, Mike Farris, Robin O’Dell, Tyler O’Dell, and Clay O’Dell.

PHOTO CAPTION #2:  Clay O’Dell with a nice Lake Belton hybrid striped bass taken on the MAL Lure.   If you peek at that LiveScope screen behind Clay, you’ll see there were more hybrid where that one came from!

PHOTO CAPTION #3: That’s Josh “The Situation” Farris with the first hybrid striped bass of his fishing career!

 

PHOTO CAPTION #4: And that’s Tyler O’Dell with a hybrid of his own.

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED:  Thursday (AM), 06 November 2020

HOW WE FISHED:

This morning brought with it the warmest and most overcast morning of the week.  We had both heavy grey cloud cover and patchy fog (for the first hour or so).

I really prefer some cloud cover, as I believe it extends the overall length of the feeding period, but, it also causes the feed to begin later.

We had a slow 35 minutes at the front end of the trip, but, the fish stayed biting until right around 11:35, which is about an hour longer than normal, so, we netted about 30 more minutes of fishing versus a day with clear skies.

Long story short, these fellows put noses to the grindstone and kept their technique sound for the entire morning, resulting in a catch of 288 fish which included a single smallmouth bass, a single freshwater drum, 5 legal hybrid striped bass, and 281 white bass.

Thanks to a prolonged warming spell with southerly winds all week, the water temperature saw a net rise for the week, settling in the mid-60’s.

We caught fish at 4 distinct areas this morning, all in 34-44 feet of water.  The first area gave up 56 fish, the second areas gave up 65 fish, the third area gave up 136 fish, and then the bite died as we fished our fourth area, which gave up a final 31 fish.

Every last fish was landed on either a chartreuse or white MAL Lure retrieved with a moderate cadence.  I layered in the use of LiveScope at our last three areas once everyone had the baseline retrieve method down pat.

The use of LiveScope increases efficiency because it allows each client to stop their retrieve and allow their lure to return to bottom if no fish are seen responding, and because it allows each client to continue their retrieve as fish are seen chasing and overtaking their bait.

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: 288 fish caught and released

OBSERVATIONS:   No helpful bird activity witnessed this morning.

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES:

Start Time:  6:45A

End Time: 11:35A

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 61F

Elevation:  0.50′ low with a 0.02’ 24-hour drop and 0 CFS flow thru the dam

Water Surface Temp: 65.5F

Wind Speed & Direction:  SSE breeze blowing ~8 the entire trip

Sky Condition: 100% grey skies with thin fog in the first hour, clearing to 90% white/grey cloud cover by trip’s end

Moon Phase: Waning gibbous at 71% illumination

GT = 70

Wx SNAPSHOT:

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area 083/2055 – slow bite under murky grey skies and light fog; 56 fish  (SP)

**Area B0201C; 65 fish (SP)

**Area B0050G; 136 fish (SP)

**Area 1209; 31 fish  (SP)

 

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

#WhiteBassFishing #LakeBelton #StillhouseHollow #BeltonFishingGuide #LakeBeltonFishingGuide

#BeltonLakeFishingGuide #stripers #stripedbassfishing #rockfish #sandbass #freshwaterfishing #fishing

#bass #bassfishing #whitebass #panfish #crappie #fishingonaboat #fishingtackle #fishinglife #fishingsport

#fishingaddict #fishingpicoftheday #fishingtime #fishinggear #fishingday

#Fitec

A LITTLE DADDY-DAUGHTER TIME — 134 FISH @ BELTON

WHO I FISHED WITH: This past Wednesday morning I fished a daddy-daughter trip with Brad Allen of Killeen, and his daughter, 8-year-old Peyton Allen.  Brad received a fishing gift certificate from his wife over the summer and we scheduled the trip for early last week, but the cold, rainy conditions just weren’t right to have a child out on the water, so, we rescheduled for today and hoped for good weather, which we were afforded.

Brad is the service manager at a commercial truck company in Waco, and Peyton is working her way through grade school at the same school in the Killeen Independent School District where her mom teaches both in-person and online classes.

PHOTO CAPTION #1: Brad and Peyton Allen with our largest fish of the trip, a nice 19.5″ hybrid weighing in at 3 1/8 pounds.  This one fell for a chartreuse MAL Lure.

 

PHOTO CAPTION #2: This freshwater drum was Peyton’s largest fish of the trip.  

 

PHOTO CAPTION #3:  The majority of our catch was comprised of white bass in the 0-3 year class.  All 134 of our fish caught this morning came on either chartreuse or white MAL Lures.

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED:  Wednesday (AM), 04 November 2020

HOW WE FISHED: 

As good as the fall fishing is, if there is one thing to fault about it, it is that it can be a bit one-dimensional.  Nearly every last one of my trips since turnover has involved 4+ hours of working MAL Lures vertically, and today was no exception.  Downrigging and sunfishing are still possibilities, but, to her credit, Peyton stayed engaged in the vertical presentation from start to finish.

For the second consecutive morning, a handful of gulls indicated right where we needed to begin our fishing as they circled and dipped to the water, sipping crippled shad from the surface — shad which were injured by gamefish below.

We fished only three distinct areas this morning, and found prolonged action at each.  Our first area (under those birds) produced 43 fish, our second stop produced 56 fish, and our final stop (with 2 short hops) produced a final 35 fish.

Our catch consisted primarily of white bass with a sprinkling of hybrid stripers and drum.

Thanks to cool nights and warm days balancing one another out, the water temperature has remained stable in the mid-60’s this week.

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: 134 fish caught and released

OBSERVATIONS:   Just a handful of gulls pointed the way to our first bit of action this morning.

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES: 

Start Time:  6:45A

End Time: 10:45A

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 46F

Elevation:  0.50′ low with a 0.02’ 24-hour drop and 0 CFS flow thru the dam

Water Surface Temp: 64.5F

Wind Speed & Direction:  SSE breeze blowing ~8 the entire trip

Sky Condition: <5% white cloud cover on a blue sky

Moon Phase: Waning gibbous at 87% illumination

GT = 0

Wx SNAPSHOT:  

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area vic 083/1483 — 43 white bass on the MAL Lure (SP)

**Area vic B0157C — 66 white bass on the MAL Lure (SP)

**Area vic 152/1385 — 2 short hops: 15 white bass on the MAL Lure @ 1st hop and 10 more @ 2nd hop (SP)

 

 

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

#WhiteBassFishing #LakeBelton #StillhouseHollow #BeltonFishingGuide #LakeBeltonFishingGuide

#BeltonLakeFishingGuide #stripers #stripedbassfishing #rockfish #sandbass #freshwaterfishing #fishing

#bass #bassfishing #whitebass #panfish #crappie #fishingonaboat #fishingtackle #fishinglife #fishingsport

#fishingaddict #fishingpicoftheday #fishingtime #fishinggear #fishingday

#Fitec

HE ELECTED … TO GO FISHING, 104 FISH @ BELTON

WHO I FISHED WITH: This past Tuesday evening, Election Day 2020, I fished with Killeen Police Department’s Sergeant Shawn Dejournette.

Shawn is a husband, father, U.S. Army veteran, Christ follower, and beekeeper originally from Missouri and although he had fished before and owned a bass boat at one point in time, he’d never fished as we did today.

Shawn was eager to learn and willingly coached, and his results reflected that.

 

PHOTO CAPTION #1:  The photo is a bit grainy because we worked right up until the fish absolutely quit at dark in our efforts to put 100 fish in the boat this evening, which we did by right around 6PM, well after the sun had set.

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED:  Tuesday (PM), 03 November 2020

HOW WE FISHED: 

Shawn and I got going at 1:30PM.  To his credit, he had done his homework and watched my MAL Lure tactic video before arriving, so he was already familiar with the “tutorial” I provided him in preparation for using the MAL Lure as our primary tool to catch white bass.

This afternoon’s bite was definitely not as intense as either the morning bite or the afternoon bite on those afternoon trips I’d fished as recently as last Saturday.

As you can see from the list of areas we had to stop at to put together our catch, it far exceeded the typical 3-4 stops it normally takes to make a solid trip.

The fishing was the same at each location right up until the sun dipped below the western horizon.  Up until sunset we “parked” atop strong congregations of white bass and fished the MAL Lure vertically with a moderately-paced “smoking” style retrieve.  After sunset, as the depths dimmed, those fish remaining active shifted briefly toward the surface and began feeding in the top 7 feet of the water column.  As we watched the nearly calm surface, we could see them form individual boils of water and/or shad skipping away from them.  About one in three casts resulted in a hookup over a ~25 minute span to help up land our final 17 fish, and eclipse the 100 fish mark.

TALLY: 104 fish caught and released

OBSERVATIONS:   This afternoon’s bite was a bit tougher than expected, especially given a mild warming trend and southerly breeze.  The fish weren’t locked down, but just a bit lackadaisical.

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES: 

Start Time:  1:30P

End Time: 6:00P

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 76F

Elevation:  0.50′ low with a 0.02’ 24-hour drop and 0 CFS flow thru the dam

Water Surface Temp: 66.3F

Wind Speed & Direction:  SSE breeze blowing ~12 at trip’s start, slowly tapering to light and variable by sunset

Sky Condition: <5% white cloud cover on a blue sky

Moon Phase: Waning gibbous at 93% illumination

GT = 55

Wx SNAPSHOT:  

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area vic 192 — 22 white bass on the MAL Lure in our first 35 minutes  (SP)

**Area vic 993/1814 — 14 white bass on the MAL Lure (SP)

**Area vic 0153 — 15 white bass on the MAL Lure  (SP)

**Area vic 310 — 14 white bass on the MAL Lure (SP)

**Area vic 709 – two short hops here for 11 white bass on the MAL Lure (SP)

**Area vic 192 (revisited) – 11 white bass on the MAL Lure (SP)

**Area 1657 – sight casting to whites feeding near (not at) the surface for a final 17 white bass

 

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

#WhiteBassFishing #LakeBelton #StillhouseHollow #BeltonFishingGuide #LakeBeltonFishingGuide

#BeltonLakeFishingGuide #stripers #stripedbassfishing #rockfish #sandbass #freshwaterfishing #fishing

#bass #bassfishing #whitebass #panfish #crappie #fishingonaboat #fishingtackle #fishinglife #fishingsport

#fishingaddict #fishingpicoftheday #fishingtime #fishinggear #fishingday

#Fitec

WISH THEY MADE THAT SCENT IN A CAR JAR – 204 FISH @ BELTON

WHO I FISHED WITH: This past Tuesday morning, Election Day 2020, I fished with father-and-son Gary and Nathan Smith of Belton.  The Smiths heard good things about the fishing from the Niemeiers and decided to give it a try.

Gary is the president of Centrifugal Castings in Temple, which is an employee-owned company he’s been a part of for several decades.

Nathan works as an accountant for Baylor Scott & White.

Since Gary lives just a few blocks from the Arrowhead Point boat ramp and requested I pick him and Nathan up there, I gladly did so.

 

PHOTO CAPTION #1:  Gary Smith with our largest fish of the trip — a hybrid striped bass which was the first fish out of a large school of fish to rise quickly after Gary’s white MAL Lure and engulf it.

 

 

PHOTO CAPTION #2:  Minutes after Gary took two nice hybrid from the same school, Nathan came up with one of his own, also on a white MAL Lure worked vertically.

PHOTO CAPTION #3:  In addition to the hybrid, we landed several white bass in the 3-year class.

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED:  Tuesday (AM), 03 November 2020

HOW WE FISHED: 

We got off to a bit of a slow start thanks to calm conditions as sunrise.  We looked deep hoping depth would reduce the light levels which the calm surface and lack of wave action did not accomplish.  We found a small school of fish right around 7:35 after about 30 minutes of searching.  This school fired up for a short while, giving up 8 fish as Gary and Nathan got the kinks worked out of their MAL Lure retrieval technique.

Next, just as the SE wind began to ripple the surface, the season’s first light bird action on Belton led us to two groups of fish within 200 yards of each other.  These two areas produced the lion’s share of our fish.  As I observed the birds and tried to zero in on the fish they were indicating, I noted the odor of baitfish being fed upon wafting in the air.  This isn’t really a fishy smell – it is more like a cross between cut grass and watermelon rind.  It means gamefish are tearing up bait and the oil from that bait is rising to the surface where the wind carries that odor downwind.  I’ve speculated that because shad eat algae, and algae contains chlorophyll, the odor of the chlorophyll (also found in green grass and the green rind of a watermelon) gives it something in common with those other two forms of plant life.

I love that smell because I know some serious catching is about to happen – I wish Yankee Candle made that in a manly Car Jar.

Anyway, once these fish wound down, around 10:05, we moved one final time to 44’ of water and worked over one last school of white bass until they quit, right at 10:50.

100% of our fish came on white MAL Lures fish vertically an at a moderately-paced retrieve.  We landed 4 legal hybrid striped bass, 1 short hybrid, and 199 white bass with one largemouth which escaped by jumping right at the boat (and which was therefore not counted).

TALLY: 204 fish caught and released

OBSERVATIONS:   Today marked the first day this autumn where migratory, fish-eating birds helped lead the way to fish.  Although few gulls are present, approx. 7 ring-bill gulls worked a ~2 acre patch of water and helped me find two distinct schools of fish.  When we arrived under the birds, the air smelled of shad (cut grass/watermelon rind), further indicating a feed was underway.

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES: 

Start Time:  6:45A

End Time: 10:50

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 46F

Elevation:  0.50′ low with a 0.02’ 24-hour drop and 0 CFS flow thru the dam

Water Surface Temp: 66.3F

Wind Speed & Direction:  SSE breeze starting light and variable and slowly ramping up to 12-13 at trip’s end

Sky Condition: <5% white cloud cover on a blue sky

Moon Phase: Waning gibbous at 93% illumination

GT = 55

Wx SNAPSHOT:  

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Areas vic 354 – white bass on vertically retrieved MAL Lure; count to 8 (SP)

**Area vic B0078C /B0149C – white bass on vertically retrieved MAL Lure; count to 24 (SP)

**Area vic 1483/B0031C– white bass on vertically retrieved MAL Lure; count to 146 (SP)

**Area vic 682– white bass on vertically retrieved MAL Lure; count to 204 final (SP)

 

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

#WhiteBassFishing #LakeBelton #StillhouseHollow #BeltonFishingGuide #LakeBeltonFishingGuide

#BeltonLakeFishingGuide #stripers #stripedbassfishing #rockfish #sandbass #freshwaterfishing #fishing

#bass #bassfishing #whitebass #panfish #crappie #fishingonaboat #fishingtackle #fishinglife #fishingsport

#fishingaddict #fishingpicoftheday #fishingtime #fishinggear #fishingday

#Fitec

CARL SCHWENKE’S TRIP — 151 FISH @ BELTON

WHO I FISHED WITH: This past Monday morning, 02 November 2020, I fished with 74-year-old U.S. Air Force veteran Carl Schwenke of Salado.

Carl recently purchased his own tri-toon which he keeps stored at BLORA on Lake Belton.  He has a Minn Kota GPS-type trolling motor and a Garmin sonar unit on this rig and has scheduled an on-the-water sonar training with me in the near future, but wanted to get on the water and see similar equipment in use first so he could get the most our of training time.

PHOTO CAPTION #1: Although the lion’s share of our catch consisted of white bass, a few hybrid, largemouth, and drum also fell for the MAL Lure.

 

PHOTO CAPTION #2: The frequency of “by-catch” largemouth continues to increase on a daily basis, indicating these fish are moving to deeper water.

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED:  Monday (AM), 02 Novembr 2020

HOW WE FISHED: 

The catching started right off the bat this morning.  That said, due to a poor result in my attempts at low-light downrigging last week, I decided to move my trip start times back a bit to coincide with sunrise instead of getting started well before sunrise as I do in the warmer parts of the year.

As I moved away from the launch area and was going over pre-trip “admin” (safety briefing, reel handle adjustments, technique review, etc.) I had sonar running and noted a school of white bass holding in right at 30 feet of water over several yards of bottom as we drifted.

Once I finished all the admin (which I went through quickly in order to get lines in the water while the fish were beneath us), we got lines in the water and, using MAL Lures fished vertically, put 17 fish in the boat in no time.  As the sun began to clear the horizon and shine brightly through the cloudless sky, this bite wound down pretty rapidly.

From that point on was hunted white bass congregations using sonar in 36-46 feet of water, finding 3 cooperative schools which fed right through our wrap-up at 11:20.

Each of these three locations fished the same – fish started off tightly holding on bottom, rose up off bottom as we began working the MAL Lures, and then as we began pulling fish in routinely, some of the most active individuals would rise to the midpoint of the water column.

Fishing with a “plain-Jane” retrieve using a moderate cadence once the spinner blade had begun turning was the key to consistent action.

We finished up with exactly 151 fish for our efforts, which included drum, hybrid, largemouth, and white bass in the 0, 1, 2, and 3-year classes.

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: 151 fish caught and released

OBSERVATIONS: Start time adjusted to 6:45AM following end of Daylight Saving Time.  I was launching at 7:15A, but, with the decline in the low-light downrigging bite last week, decided to push the start time 30 minutes later (as it would have been 6:15AM after the time change).

 

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES: 

Start Time:  6:45A

End Time: 11:20A

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 41F

Elevation:  0.48 low with a 0.02’ 24-hour drop and 0 CFS flow thru the dam

Water Surface Temp: 66.1F

Wind Speed & Direction:  WNW wind at 13 at trip’s start, fading to calm by 9:45, then turning SE at 5-7 thereafter

Sky Condition: Clear blue skies with <5% cloud cover

Moon Phase: A waning gibbous at 97% illumination

GT = 35

Wx SNAPSHOT:  

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Areas vic B0194C – white bass on vertically retrieved MAL Lure; count to 17 (SP)

**Area vic B0075C – white bass on vertically retrieved MAL Lure; count to 75 (SP)

**Area vic B0157C– white bass on vertically retrieved MAL Lure; count to 137 (SP)

**Area vic 682– white bass on vertically retrieved MAL Lure; count to 151 final (SP)

 

 

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

#WhiteBassFishing #LakeBelton #StillhouseHollow #BeltonFishingGuide #LakeBeltonFishingGuide

#BeltonLakeFishingGuide #stripers #stripedbassfishing #rockfish #sandbass #freshwaterfishing #fishing

#bass #bassfishing #whitebass #panfish #crappie #fishingonaboat #fishingtackle #fishinglife #fishingsport

#fishingaddict #fishingpicoftheday #fishingtime #fishinggear #fishingday

#Fitec

 

NO TRICKS, JUST TREATED TO 125 FISH @ BELTON

WHO I FISHED WITH: This past Saturday evening, Halloween 2020, I fished with three generations aboard.

Richard Kusak arranged this trip after being referred my way by Belton chief of police, Gene Ellis.  Richard, a former military policeman and Belton police officer, brought along his dad, Randy Kurzinsky, and his 12-year-old son, RJ Kusak.

Randy is part of the United Steel Workers’ Union up in Ohio and works as a heavy machinery mechanic in a scrap yard there.  He loves leaving the cold behind and visiting Texas, especially this time of year.

RJ is working his way through middle school with the Belton Independent School District and is attending class in person where he plays bassoon in addition to his academics.

PHOTO CAPTION #1:   From left: RJ Kusak, Randy Kurzinsky, and Richard Kuzak with some of the solid white bass we took on Halloween 2020.

 

PHOTO CAPTION #2:  Triple!!  We tried downrigging for variety’s sake and to give RJ’s wrist a break, and Richard came up with 2 sets of triples on the 3-armed umbrella rig equipped with Pet Spoons.

 

PHOTO CAPTION #3: Here’s Randy K. with a nice largemouth taken from amidst a large school of white bass.  As I’ve noted several times this past week, brightly colored largemouth are now beginning to show up in deep water.

 

PHOTO CAPTION #4:  I captured this image just after sunset as a small, single-engine float plane which was doing “touch and go” practice all day, came near enough for a photo.

 

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED:  Saturday, 31 October 2020, PM

HOW WE FISHED: 

This afternoon with picked up right were we’d left off this morning as the afternoon bite got underway, then tapered up to a peak, then dropped off beginning around 5:30P.

We caught fish in rapid succession by working MAL Lures in both white and chartreuse vertically over heavily congregated fish at three distinct areas.  These fish were “glued” to the bottom when we first detected them on sonar, then got “teased” up into the lower third of the water column after we began catching them.  The commotion caused by reeling fish in, working the MAL Lures, and the feces and regurgitated fish falling down from the fish we’d hooked, just served to attract more fish and get a frenzy going.

We landed 42 fish at our first stop, another 19 fish at our second stop, and another 19 fish at our third stop.  By the time we saw a slowdown of the fish at our third stop, RJ’s wrist was already hurting, so I did some cogitating and thought how I might a) offer him some variety, and b) do it in a way where he could rest his wrist.  The solution was giving downrigging a try.

This morning’s downrigging attempt was a flop with no fish to show for the effort, so, I was a bit leary about doing this, but, we’d already caught a bunch of fish and so I thought a short experiment wouldn’t hurt.

We got re-tooled for downrigging and, no sooner did the balls go down than Richard came up with a triple and RJ came up with a double.  We continued downrigging as long as the fish were willing to bite horizontally moving baits, which was until right around 5:30, when there was a very distinct decrease in the action.  Richard actually wound up catching back-to-back triples — a pretty rare event.  We landed another 23 fish downrigging, and, as we wrapped that up, our tally stood at 103 fish

After the 5:30 slowdown, we looked at 4 other areas and sonar revealed nothing at each one.  We persisted, and found one last patch of fish.  This school gave up a final 22 fish for a grand total catch on the evening of 125 fish.

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: 125 FISH  

OBSERVATIONS:  Had reliable report of white bass popping shad in last 90 minutes prior to sunset in the vicinity of Area B0047C.

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES: 

Start Time:  2:45P

End Time: 6:45P

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 74F

Elevation:  0.46′ low with a 0.03′ 24-hour rise and 0 CFS flow thru the dam

Water Surface Temp: 66.1F

Wind Speed & Direction:  S7-9 all afternoon

Sky Condition: Blue skies with <5% white cloud cover

Moon Phase: Full moon

GT = 30

Wx SNAPSHOT:  N/A

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area vic 192/1678  – 42 fish using MAL Lure vertically  (SP)

**Area vic 1934/1819  – 19 fish using MAL Lure vertically   (SP)

**Area vic 1827 – 19 fish using MAL Lure vertically   (SP)

**Area vic 709/1024 – 23 fish downrigging with Pet Spoons on 3-armed umbrella rig

**Area vic 1815 – 20 fish using MAL Lure vertically   (SP)

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

#WhiteBassFishing #LakeBelton #StillhouseHollow #BeltonFishingGuide #LakeBeltonFishingGuide

#BeltonLakeFishingGuide #stripers #stripedbassfishing #rockfish #sandbass #freshwaterfishing #fishing

#bass #bassfishing #whitebass #panfish #crappie #fishingonaboat #fishingtackle #fishinglife #fishingsport

#fishingaddict #fishingpicoftheday #fishingtime #fishinggear #fishingday

#Fitec

TRES AMIGOS — 151 FISH @ BELTON

WHO I FISHED WITH: This past Saturday morning, October 31st, I fished with three friends from the Austin area.

Stiles Parker, who fished with me once before over the summer, accompanied by his brother, arranged this trip for himself and two of his brother’s co-workers — Paul Geyman and Chris Mitchell.

All had prior fishing experience, but not with the tactics we employed today.

 

 

PHOTO CAPTION #1:   That’s Chris Mitchell — he landed the largest of our 151 fish this morning.  This hybrid, and four other keepers like it, were mixed in with a nice school of white bass in about 38 feet of water.

PHOTO CAPTION #2: The largemouth bass count coming out of deep water is starting to rise.  Note how nicely colored this bass is.  It has not been in deep water very long.

PHOTO CAPTION #3: Paul took this hybrid on a white MAL Lure.  It came out of the same school that Chris’ hybrid came from, and just minutes apart.

PHOTO CAPTION #4: Tres amigos.

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED:  Saturday, 31 October 2020, AM

HOW WE FISHED: 

I spoke with Stiles by phone in advance of the trip letting him know the bright skies and calm winds would make things tough as long as they persisted, and, they did.

We went fishless for 1.25 hours until, around 9AM, the southerly winds began to ripple the surface and, just a few minutes thereafter, the fish turned on.  From that point until the close of the trip, we found fish consistently and the fish we found cooperated consistently.

Each of the three areas we fish produced similarly in that the fish first presented in a positive posture on bottom, then, as we created commotion with our presentations, they pulled up off bottom into the entire lower third of the water column, with occasional fish coming up as much as half way off bottom.  We found these “high flyers” were typically small fish.

The MAL Lure worked with a plain-Jane retrieve from bottom up through the fish very well today — it wound up being the only thing we caught fish on this morning, as the low-light downrigger bite seems to have died.  White and chartreuse MAL Lures were used interchangeably and worked equally well.

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: 151 FISH  

OBSERVATIONS: Spotted the first gulls on Lake Belton which were actually “working” the lake looking for food.  Their behavior did not aid in finding fish, but, at least we have a few present now, and more to come.

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES: 

Start Time:  7:15A

End Time: 11:45A

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 39F

Elevation:  0.46′ low with a 0.03′ 24-hour rise and 0 CFS flow thru the dam

Water Surface Temp: 66.1F

Wind Speed & Direction:  S3-6 most of the morning, with a quick increase to S9 over the hour’s span from 10:45 to 11:45

Sky Condition: Clear skies

Moon Phase: Full moon

GT = 70

Wx SNAPSHOT:  N/A

 

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area vic B0182C – 45 fish using MAL Lure vertically  (SP)

**Area vic 305 to B0119C – 43 fish using MAL Lure vertically   (SP)

**Area vic – 63 fish using MAL Lure vertically   (SP)

 

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

#WhiteBassFishing #LakeBelton #StillhouseHollow #BeltonFishingGuide #LakeBeltonFishingGuide

#BeltonLakeFishingGuide #stripers #stripedbassfishing #rockfish #sandbass #freshwaterfishing #fishing

#bass #bassfishing #whitebass #panfish #crappie #fishingonaboat #fishingtackle #fishinglife #fishingsport

#fishingaddict #fishingpicoftheday #fishingtime #fishinggear #fishingday

#Fitec

Post-Frontal Fishing – 121 Fish @ Belton

WHO I FISHED WITH: This past Friday morning, October 30th, I fished with father and son team Kelly and Aaron Baggett.

Dr. Aaron Baggett, is an assistant professor on the faculty at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor in Belton, and his father, Kelly Baggett, is a retired school district superintendent from the Lubbock area.

 

PHOTO CAPTION #1:  From left: Aaron and Kelly Baggett with a few of the 121 fish we landed at the tail-end of the north wind this past Friday, following the most recent cold front’s passage.

 

 

WHERE WE FISHED: Belton Lake

WHEN WE FISHED:  Friday, 30 October 2020, AM

HOW WE FISHED: 

I observed that the fairly quick, horizontal presentation of downrigging was all but ignored this morning.  In the low-light period prior to sunrise which had been producing about 20 fish for me very consistently up through around 8AM, we only landed 4 fish this morning.  However, as we downrigged and my eyes were glued to my sonar screens, I noted that most of the fish I saw were suspended at 24-28 feet over a deeper bottom, and were not holding near bottom as was the case prior to this cooldown.

This led me to look up shallower where the 24-28 foot horizontal band of water intersected with the bottom, and, I found fish there.  I found white bass, hybrid striped bass, and largemouth bass.  It was interesting to note that the largemouth bass we caught were very handsomely colored, meaning they had been in shallow water very recently (as the coloration of largemouth which linger in deep water for long whiles begins to fade making them look very pale).

We caught 30 additional fish in that 28-foot water and then found fish deeper than that after the brilliant sun continued brightening the sky.

As is often the case, the fishing peaked as the wind peaked this morning, between 8:30AM and 10:40AM.  During this time we fished two more locations.  The first produced another 17 fish which were mostly small fish.  While these fish were still biting, we chose to move to see if we could find larger fish – with my clients’ blessing, of course.   Some folks prefer the action the smaller fish provide, and so I always give the option to remain on small fish.

Because it happened so suddenly, I actually noted the exact time at which the winds went calm Friday morning – 10:43AM – as we fished our third and final area of the morning.

From that point on, the fishing began to taper to nothing, and, by 11:30AM, the fish finally shut down.  This final stop produced more than half of our fish – exactly 70.

In all, we managed to catch 121 fish, the vast majority of which were white bass in the 0-, 1-, and 2-year classes.

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: 121 FISH  

OBSERVATIONS: Water surface temperature fell 4.4F due to the recent extended cold snap from Mon. to present.  Temperature profile from the 5 to 65 feet deep was homogenous, at 67.8F; the surface was 67.2.

TODAY’S CONDITIONS/NOTES: 

Start Time:  7:10A

End Time: 11:30A

Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 45F

Elevation:  0.43′ low with a 0.05′ 24-hour rise and 0 CFS flow thru the dam

Water Surface Temp: 67.2F

Wind Speed & Direction:  WNW9 until dying suddenly at 10:43A

Sky Condition: Clear skies

Moon Phase: A waxing gibbous moon at 99% illum.

GT = 55

Wx SNAPSHOT:  

 

AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:

**Area vic 1804 – 34 fish in 2 short hops (SP)

**Area vic B0118C  – 16 fish, mostly small (SP)

**Area vic B0152JWCC  – 71 fish with mix of year groups (SP)

 

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

#WhiteBassFishing #LakeBelton #StillhouseHollow #BeltonFishingGuide #LakeBeltonFishingGuide

#BeltonLakeFishingGuide #stripers #stripedbassfishing #rockfish #sandbass #freshwaterfishing #fishing

#bass #bassfishing #whitebass #panfish #crappie #fishingonaboat #fishingtackle #fishinglife #fishingsport

#fishingaddict #fishingpicoftheday #fishingtime #fishinggear #fishingday

#Fitec