• July 2, 2016

Outdoor Sports

The Latest News

BOB MAINDELLE: Despite flooding, Belton Lake producing record catches

As I write this, Belton Lake stands at 23.47 feet above normal elevation and is still rising by 0.2 to 0.4 feet per day thanks to a heavy, ongoing release of water from Lake Proctor further upstream on the Leon River. Lake Proctor’s release this past week has remained around 7,700 cubic feet per second, whereas Belton’s release this past week has fallen about 2,000 cubic feet per second shy of that, thus resulting in a net gain of water on Belton.

Area fishing conditions ‘still terrible’

Area anglers are still in a tough bind.

Summer fishing essential: understanding the thermocline

As rain-free skies finally cleared sufficiently to let the sun shine for more than two or three days in a row this month, our average air temperatures have increased, and our local lakes’ surface temperatures have likewise increased.

BOB MAINDELLE: Nearby alternatives to flooded Belton, Stillhouse exist

According to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ (USACE) Fort Worth District website, as of June 3, Belton Lake was 21.91 feet above full pool and still rising. Stillhouse Hollow Reservoir stood at 18.58 feet above full pool and was slowly dropping.

BOB MAINDELLE: Corps of Engineers official discusses area lake conditions

This week I interviewed Ronnie Bruggman, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Lake Manager of Belton Lake and Stillhouse Hollow Reservoir, concerning the flooding which has forced the closure of boat ramps on both lakes.

Summer fishing by boat ‘at risk’

According to an area outdoors expert, fishing by boat at Stillhouse Hollow Reservoir and Belton Lake this summer may not be possible.

FISHING: Killeen couple win Tuesday Night tourney that was moved to Belton Lake

Jeff Vernon and Cheril Connell, both of Killeen, won the Tuesday Night Tournament with a two-fish bag weighing 12.16 pounds. 

BOB MAINDELLE: Fort Hood SKIES program angler earns First Fish Award

In late April, I received an email from Brenda Brown, manager of the Fort Hood SKIES Unlimited program, letting me know that Jennifer Katz, of Killeen, had signed up her daughter, Cayli Katz, for a “Fishing 101” trip with me on May 21.

BOB MAINDELLE: Salado, Belton student share $2,500 tourney scholarship prize

Last Sunday, the capping event of the Central Texas High School Tournament Trail took place on Lake Belton. After fishing multiple events over the course of this school year, 22 qualifying two-person teams took to the water to compete for the grand prize of $2,500 in scholarship money and other prizes.

BOB MAINDELLE: Belton Lake stocked with more than 1.2M hybrid striped bass fry

John Tibbs is the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s Inland Fisheries District 2B Supervisor and, lucky for we anglers here in Central Texas, he is also an avid fisherman and a longtime proponent of the implementation and improvement of the hybrid striped bass stocking program.

FISHING: Vickers-Hirschman team wins growing Tuesday Night Tournament

There were 56 teams competing in the Tuesday Night Tournament this week at Stillhouse Hollow Reservoir and the winning team was Willie Vickers-Billy Hirschman. 

BOB MAINDELLE: Belton Lake’s consistency now perfect for young anglers

There comes a time each spring when lengthening days, rising water temperature and increasing fish metabolism all translate into incredibly productive and consistent fishing for both quality fish and high quantities of fish on Lake Belton.

FISHING: Thompson-Reinhardt win Tuesday Night Tournament

The weather was brutal on Tuesday night at Stillhouse Hollow Reservoir. But that didn’t stop 35 teams from entering the weekly Tuesday Night Tournament. 

Kayak demo day, fishing tournament coming to Stillhouse

If you have ever considered kayak fishing, but hesitated to take the plunge because you just were not sure of what sort of kayak to get, or what length would be appropriate, or what means of propulsion would be best, the upcoming kayak demonstration day and fishing tournament is for you.

BOB MAINDELLE: Great man memorialized with fishing tourney

On Saturday, area civilians, active-duty military, military retirees and other veterans came together to remember their friend, commander, brother-in-arms and fellow fisherman, Brig. Gen. Charles B. Allen. This gathering took the form of a bass fishing tournament held at Dana Peak Park on Stillhouse Hollow Reservoir.

BOB MAINDELLE: Hybrid striped bass peaking on Belton Lake

Lots of local anglers are cashing in right now on catching large hybrid striped bass on Belton Lake.

FISHING: Holcomb, Gantenbein take Tuesday Night Tournament title, earn $1,380

Glen Holcomb, of Kempner, and Charlie Gantenbein, of Temple, earned a first-place purse of $1,380 for winning the Tuesday Night Tournament with a three-fish bag weighing 12.24 pounds. 

Fleeman, Miller win Tuesday Night Tournament at Stillhouse Hollow

Randy Fleeman, of Copperas Cove, and Chris Miller, of Kempner, won the Tuesday Night Tournament at Stillhouse Hollow Reservoir with a 9.44-pound bag. The duo split a first-place prize of $940. 

BOB MAINDELLE: Florence firefighter sets bowfishing record at Stillhouse

My phone rang at 3 a.m. Normally, that’s not a good thing. Given that it was the 16th of March and right in the middle of the Texas public school spring break, I figured one of my clients was ill and they were calling to cancel or reschedule their morning trip.

BOB MAINDELLE: Belton youth lands lake record white bass

On March 16, John and Elaine Wyckoff, of Belton, took their three grandchildren on a guided fishing trip with me on Stillhouse Hollow Reservoir. The Wyckoff’s grandchildren, 15-year-old Dacia Rodriguez, 11-year-old Malia Rodriguez, and 8-year-old Gabriel Rodriguez, are all Belton residents and students in Belton public schools.

First-time teammates capture Tuesday Night Tournament with 15.11-pound bag

Talk about instant team chemistry.

FISHING: Cosper-Guerra team going for unprecedented ‘three-peat’ in TNT

Fred Cosper, of Killeen, and John Guerra, of Belton, have a shot at the “three-peat.” 

BOB MAINDELLE: White bass spawning run adds to colonel’s celebration

Hank McKnelly, of Killeen, contacted me in late February, inquiring about a weekend fishing trip for himself, his daughter, Brenna McKnelly, age 8, and his older brother, Stew McKnelly.

BOB MAINDELLE: Some tips for a successful parent-child fishing excursion

I recently received an email from Brad Bennett, the father of an 11-year-old boy, Bret, living in Salado. In it he wrote, “Bob, my name is Brad Bennett and I am a local vet. My son Bret just turned 11 and is starting to get interested in fishing. We would both love to soak up any fishing tips you have because I haven’t fished in many years, but just got a boat to try to get my son out on the lake. I am afraid he will lose interest if I keep taking him without catching anything.”