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

“There is no boat-access type of fishing at Stillhouse right now,” said Bob Maindelle, owner of Holding The Line Guide Service. “The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers controls access to the lakes and, based on current conditions, has prohibited access by boat via all Stillhouse boat ramps and the majority of Belton Lake ramps, too.

“And if the amount of rain — based on current forecasts — continues, we’ll most likely see a complete shutdown of all boat access to Belton Lake.”

Anglers, most likely, will still be able to fish from the shores.

For those who prefer fishing by boat, for the closed ramps to reopen, weather conditions will need to change.

“Our rainfall situation needs to stop,” Maindelle said. “The rain must stop to let the lakes return to normal elevations. Summer fishing is at risk if we can’t get ahead of the rising water.

“Too much rain and all of the Central Texas reservoirs drain into the Brazos River. So with so much widespread heavy rainfall, lakes from Georgetown up to Lake Whitney and Possum Kingdom Lake are contributing to the Brazos River’s flow.

“All the lakes are high. We’re backing up at Stillhouse and Belton — and there simply is no place for the water to go.”

Contact Allan Mandell at or 254-501-7566 and read his column at

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