It was still a little too dark to determine how much water clarity we
had, but the tide was slowly creeping in and there was just enough of a
breeze to ripple the water.“I can’t believe it is already this hot,”
said Brandon Lea as he sucked down one more swig of water before heading
to the front deck rod in hand.

We heard the welcomed noise before we actually saw what was causing it
and Brandon immediately lobbed his She Dog in amongst the shad flipping
on the surface.Almost before it landed, a small lady fish was dancing
across the surface trying to dislodge his lure.

“Well, at least it’s a bite and that is better than I have done on most
trips lately,” he said while trying to free his tangled leader with a
light twitch.As soon as the small topwater righted itself, it
disappeared in a shower of spray and baitfish.

“You’re not going to believe this,” he remarked about three minutes into
his losing fight, “but I think this is a small shark.So much for no
salinity!”Just about the time I was ready for him to break the powerful
fish off and get back to fishing, his shark surfaced and magically
turned into an oversized red.

“If you’ll buy me another She Dog I’ll break her off,” offered Lea as
his fish continued to pull us further away from the surface activity.
“Done,” I replied as I turned the troll motor back in the right direction.

It was a crazy start to what has been a summer of far more casting than
catching.As the number of lady fish chasing the small shad increased so
did our bite.A keeper red, two throwback trout and a strike virtually
every cast was enough to render fishing fun again.

The non-stop bite ground to a dead halt once the sun cleared the horizon
and the shad disappeared.“It was still worth getting up early,” said Lea
as we continued to drift across the shallow flat searching for any kind
of surface activity.It was too shallow to even put the engine down when
we spotted a small school of reds doing their thing well out of casting
range.

Lea gave his topwater a rest and picked up a spinning combo with a salt
and pepper Sea Shad rigged beneath an H&H popping cork.“I am going to
drift this thing just like we used to do all the way to the Causeway if
I have to.”He hadn’t drifted it ten yards when the first of several
small trout buried the cork.”

“I would be afraid to put a Gulp on my jig head,” he said while
replacing his plastic grub.Because his bite was better than anything I
was doing, I switched to the popping cork with a five inch bone diamond
Assassin.We may well have drifted into the area where we spotted the
reds, but it didn’t take long for a slot fish to mash the longer bait.

Two more keepers and Brandon was digging in my plastics.“I am the one
who changed programs,” he bragged.“You just stumbled up on the right color.”

There was some truth to his assessment, but both red shad and bone
diamond have always been excellent colors in off-colored water.I don’t
know that the length is that big a deal, but it kept the gafftop away!

In spite of our unexpected good fortune, the highlight of the morning
was catching five 16 to 19-inch trout in one small area.We never caught
another trout, but that was encouraging considering the fact that we
fished only the north end of the lake.

If you have kids between three and sixteen years old that like to fish,
you owe it to them to sign up for the fifth annual S.A.L.T. Kids
tournament Sept 7^th . Not only can they win trophies, cash and prizes
for everything from a crab to a redfish, but they may just win a
lifetime fishing license donated by Outcast Tackle and Arms as well.

There is no more user friendly event for parents than this event.It only
lasts half a day and Ancelet’s will take care of the hot dogs and
drinks.No entry fee, no registration…just go fishing and come to the
weigh-in. For more information call Max at 626-2501 or Steve at 201-7418.