WHO I FISHED WITH: This morning, Thursday, May 28th, I fished with the Oliver clan which has their roots right here in the Belton/Temple Area. Ramrodding this morning’s trip was Joe Oliver. Accompanying was Joe’s Dad, “Paw”, Joe’s brother, Jack; Joe’s daughter, Amber, and Joe’s daughter-in-love (-law), Ashley, the wife of Joe’s son, Thomas.
I fish anywhere from 180-220 paid trips each year and enjoy nearly every single one, but, when the Olivers are due to be aboard I eagerly anticipate the time spent with them. They love one another, are courteous, godly, supportive, and easy going. Plus, Joe always brings me a cold Coke Zero and gives it to me at the end of the trip!
PHOTO CAPTION: From left: Jack, Paw, Joe, Amber, and Ashley Oliver with a sampling of their 81 fish landed primarily on Hazy Eye Slabs worked vertically in deep (47-53 feet) water.
WHEN WE FISHED: 28 May, 2020, AM
HOW WE FISHED: Although both the shad spawn and the annual peak hybrid bite are quickly fading, by Joe’s request we gave the hybrid a shot in the first half of our trip using live shad. We caught 13 fish on the shad, none of which were hybrid. We landed drum, blue cat, and white bass. In addition to the season now being past peak, our conditions in the early part of this morning’s trip left much to be desired. It was clear, calm, and bright with just a slight ripple from the NW. As we fished bait, the wind swung through the west and finally went WSW. Once that southerly component kicked in, I wrapped up our bait effort and got us right onto feeding white bass with more appropriate light spinning gear.
From the mid-point of our trip to the last retrieve at about 10:50A, we took our fish count from 13 fish in the first 2 hours up to 81 fish landed in the last 2 hours.
These feeding white bass were found from bottom, up to 1/3 of the way toward the surface and were milling around in a fairly large (perhaps 90 yard) area. We had a few regurgitate the shad they were feeding on and those shad were about 3.25″ long, which was even larger than the profile of the slabs we were using. A smoking tactic worked well.
TALLY: 81 fish caught and released
OBSERVATIONS: It appears the shad spawn is over for 2020. This is now 4 consecutive days without any sign of spawning en masse. Yes, there are a few splinter schools here and there in the shallows at first light, but not tens of thousands at a time as was the case as recently as Saturday, May 23rd. I’m still waiting to see what happens on a stiff southerly wind, but such is not in the forecast for another 4+ days.
Start Time: 7A
End Time: 11A
Air Temp. @ Trip’s Start: 82F
Elevation: 0.51′ high, 0.25′ drop, 1607 CFS flow
Water Surface Temp: 75.5F
Wind Speed & Direction:
Sky Conditions: 30% white, thin hazy cover on a blue sky
GT = 85
AREAS FISHED WITH SUCCESS:
**Area vic 1292 – 13 fish on bait; mixed bag; no hybrid
**Area vic 2059 – 58 fish; 2 short hops
**Area B0041G – 10 fish
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