You're still grabbing time when you can get it to get to the lake for a few hours, but a kind of fishing trip rhythm is settling in, and it feels like you'll arrive at a balance soon between fishing and everything else in life.
And this place is quickly becoming "the lake"--the place you want to be, your home away from home. The frogs are singing your song.
While you work the shoreline on the north end--still new territory but getting pleasantly familiar--you hear a Barred owl off in the timber, and an Osprey flies over. This is your kind of place.
You find a nice little bass. You're still waiting for bigger bass to come up higher.
And you disturb another denizen of the shorelines and backwaters: a midland water snake. You get close enough to make him hiss at you. You back off; they aren't venomous, but they're aggressive--you got bit by one years ago trying to grab it by the tail.
A bluegill comes out of nowhere. You're finding single fish, but haven't found a school yet.
You work south then pour yourself a cup of coffee and strike out across the lake for the other side. You troll a heavy streamer behind you.So far there are no fish high enough in the water column to make trolling effective.
On the other side you head back north and enjoy the remaining sunlight as it washes the eastern shore.
You get into some black crappie. Pretty fish. They seem to be schooled up, and you get more bumps than hookups. But these fish give the fly a vigorous hit. You see one flash silver as it comes up and whacks the fly down in the green depths.
Soon the sun is overtaken by clouds rolling in for the night.
As darkness deepens, you kick back toward the take out. There are some people setting up camp near the boat ramp. As I pass them a fire suddenly explodes out of the dark. It smells like they used gasoline to start it. Once the refinery smell dissipates, though, and the scent of wood smoke fills the air, it's a pleasant ending to the day. You wonder what they're going to have for supper, then hurry home to get yours.