Well, maybe not quite that hot, but it is good. My son-in-law John Blasingame (Adventure Texoma Outdoors Guide) is nailing big stripers. Thing is, he is catching them later in the day when most of us are off the lake for the day. Other guides are also pulling in big fish.

I am working on a fish fry for later this year and am stocking up. I’m starting early and quitting before the real heat starts. I have temporarily gone over to the dark side for a while.

Now, I’m not looking for those big fish as much as I am smaller eaters. I don’t care for those big stripers in the summer as they are not as firm-meated as they get in colder water.

Tuesday I was on the water about 6 a.m. and most of the fleet had left earlier. I really worked at finding fish: I basically sipped coffee and cruised around looking for splashes or white birds, not gulls, working the water. That’s a sure sign that something is going on.

Now the other sure bet that there are fish around is when you see a herd of boats in one area. Tuesday for the most part all the boaters were nice and respectful to those fishing. There is always a sour apple in the barrel and we had one come flying in, shut down and his wake came over the nose of my boat as I just tried to stay in it due to rocking. The surfacing fish we were on left.

I’m not shy and I made a sarcastic remark at the top of my lungs and I’m sure he heard me because after a cast or two he left.

I know some guides who would be a little more forceful in their choice of words. After all they are at work and people like this just make their jobs harder. Be respectful of others on the lake fishing.

If you want to get in a group of boats slow down, kill your motor up wind, and float into the group. Everyone will catch more fish including you. If you don’t have a trolling motor only start your engine to keep from running into or bumping into other boats.

I used my binoculars also quite often to look for splashes as I moved about. That’s how I came to the Mill Creek flats and joined the crowd. I used two rods all the time I was fishing: my always-count-on weighted Cork with a streamer and a 1/2 ounce Cotton Cordell Jigging spoon.

The shad are roughly that size now and with a teaser hook above it I was pulling them in two at a time. The cork rig was killing them on top and the jigging rod was working when they went down.

Now here is a tip even when the other boats take off to another spot stay around where you are for a while. The fish may and likely will come up again and there is always a few stragglers left who will hit the jig. I got my limit and was back home under the oak tree cleaning them by 10 a.m.

Wednesday was one of those days you like to forget about. My friends’ pontoon boat has been having idling problems. Now of course we started getting it out of the water at hottest time of the day. We figured it would be a one-beer job.

Everything was going well. We got it loaded and he was backing it in under his covered parking place. I was at the back directing. Ever put a pontoon boat deck on top of a chain link fence without knocking it down? It can be done. Once again my navy flag signaling, minus the flags, was misunderstood. He claimed he couldn’t see me.

It might have been because I was between the boat and the fence flapping my arms and hollering. It was hotter than the hinges on hell’s door as we began getting it off the fence. It sounded sorta like our old bikes when we put a playing card or cardboard using a clothes pin to make the spokes purr as we pedaled. That’s what it sounded like as it slid down the top of the fence.

Our one-beer job turned into a two-beer day. Finally after we got it safely in his cover, we started pulling the carburetors off. This turned into a three-beer day as they hadn‘t been off since the 80s. We paused after each of these three problems to have a beer and talk about what we would get into next.

As we were working on our third beer after getting the carburetors off, we decided to go fishing Thursday.

He and I were on the lake Thursday about 7 a.m. and we headed out straight across to the backside of the Islands at Highport. Three boats and a lot of birds were working the water. Every where you looked there were schooling fish. We caught them till we were wore out. Then I made the decision to look for bigger fish.

We found the big sandbass on the Mill Creek flats. We added some meat to my live wells. Finally knowing I was going to have to clean the ones we had caught in the live well, we just decided to catch and release.

I was back home and had them in the freezer by 11 a.m. It doesn’t seem to matter what kind of boat you use just get on the water early and look for boats, birds and splashes. As shad feed in to the wind getting ahead of a school on top and waiting likely will see the fish come to you.