It doesnt seem much like it now. Cold and windy a lot of the time, dreary. However, they will come, one after the other, spread out like a good Navajo blanket with the designs in order. It is simply a matter of turning some calendar pictures.
First, will come the cold, crisp mornings, the ones that hold such promise of warm afternoons. The bass will be in transition. They will be outside the standing timber, collected on the edge of the dropoff. They will want the slower lures. It is a good time to work the jigs and small worms and watch the birds lift off the rookery. The sun warms the air, the jacket will still feel good for another hour or so. The throb of a healthy bass on the end of 10-pound line will feel good. The fish is still cold to your hand.
Probably we will start slowly, too. We will be cold and old bones dont work as smoothly as they once did. As we wind the reel handles, we might wish for the warmth of the early morning coffee cups. As the fish, begin to hit regularly, our actions become smoother. From the cast to the hook set we become almost fluid in our actions.
Later, as a page or two of calendar turns, we will catch crappie in the morning and big bream in the afternoon. These will be the cooler fish, the ones that go in the cooler to be converted into golden brown fillets, graced with a slice of Vidalia onion. We might take a day and go to the woods for turkeys. Perhaps we can find a mushroom or six to go with the fish for supper.
We might even kill a turkey.
Another page turned and the mornings start out hot. Still, a fog lies low on the water. The bass hit harder now. They are more aggressive, 20 fish an hour is normal and our thumbs are raw from handling rough-toothed bass. We are finding them against the grassy dam, in the deep water. Every now and then, a big fish hits. Often they get off, rolling some distance from the boat as they pull loose to fight again.
By late afternoon, we will be hot and tired. It will be a good time to sit on the porch and watch the sun begin slide down behind the trees, finally vanishing in the lake. Sunburns in new places begin to itch, old stories are told and the smell of supper wafts through the open door.
This week, I will be at the place all of that happens. I will be deer hunting. It is the rut down there and perhaps a bug buck will walk by. However, rest assured, I will have my fishing gear with me Justin case it turns off warm. Next week, Ill tell you all about the trip. Warmer days are coming.
They will come, those days. Just be patient.
JOHN L. SLOAN / email@example.com