The fishing at Lake Ray Hubbard is still hot; but you had better be on the water by 7am and off by 11am. Temperatures in the Dallas area reached a 112 degree heat index on Tuesday. If you don’t want to deal with fishing in the heat, you can read my articles. Here you go:
Line Callers: Fishing with Captain Hook
I had been play tennis with Julius, Brian, and George for twenty-five years at the Shores Country Club in Rockwall, and although we took the game seriously and played our hardest, we always goofed around on change overs and drank a couple beers after the match. On this particular day, we had an extremely competitive doubles match going and the final set was going to be determined by a tie-breaker. George and Julius had taken a
7-6 lead and now had match point. George hit me a good kick serve on the ad side, but I stepped out and hit a power slice that seemingly caught the baseline right in front of Julius. “Out,” Julius called out.
“Out?” Brian screamed.
“I think it was out?” Julius reiterated.
“What do you mean you think it was out? ─ it was either in or out,” Brian said.
“Okay ─ then it was out,” Julius said.
“Did you hook me?” I asked.
“No,” George said, “I saw it out too.”
“You know they are running a two-for-one deal at WalMart for glasses right now,” I said. “I would suggest you both take advantage of it.”
And with that said, we all started laughing and then went up to the grill to drain a few pitchers of beer. The tennis fellowship afterwards was always fun and somehow the conversation turned to fishing. “Hey Julius, how about you come over to the house tomorrow and help me get my boat fired up; I haven’t run it in about five months. If we can get it going I will take you fishing ─ I hear that the hybrid stripers and sand bass have schooling out at Hubbard by the power plant.
“That’s a deal,” Julius said. “I have a set of earmuffs that we could hook up to the engine and we can get it primed up right in your driveway.”
“Be careful with that guy,” Brian said, “you could end up in the lake.”
“What is that supposed to mean?” Julius asked.
“Just forget it,” I said. “Meet me the house around eight o’clock and we’ll get that old war horse going.
I was confident that Julius would be able to turn the motor over because he was pretty handy when it came to mechanical things, so I loaded the storage departments in the boat with my tackle and poles when I got home. The next day we started up the engine on the second try, ran it for about ten minutes, and then hitched the boat up to the truck. “Let’s get out to the lake,” I said.
I dropped the boat at the new launch in Rockwall off of Highway 66 and headed directly south to the power plant. We approached an area by the plant known as the “peanut” (an underwater peanut shaped structure), but there wasn’t a bird to be seen. “No birds,” I said to Julius, “but that’s okay ─ they’re probably on the bottom sitting on the humps.” We threw our slabs down in about twenty feet of water and jigged for a while, but still couldn’t get a bite. After about an hour, I suggested that we get inside of the rock jetty which protected the plant and try our luck there. I started up the boat, went around the jetty, and we started to fish in shallower water to no avail. “What do say we try the main lake,” I said to Julius.
“I’m game,” Julius replied.
I tried to start the engine, but it wouldn’t turn over. “Well, I’ll be damned,” I said. “Pull the engine up and take a look at the prop, will you Julius.”
Julius lifted the engine and found a thin piece of rope tangled in the prop. “You have got something wrapped around your blade,” he said.
“No wonder,” I said. “Try to pull it out.”
Julius stuck his hand down to try to pull the rope out, but the boat had begun to drift and the line became very taut as if it was attached to something. “I almost have it,’ he said “Just one more…”
Oh no, not again!
“What happened?” I asked.
“Son of gun line snapped and put a treble hook through the web of my hand ─ it was a trot line.”
“Does it hurt?”
“No ─ it was very pleasurable; get me to the friggin’ hospital ─ I am going to need a tetanus shot.”
I started up the boat and headed back, but right when I got under the Route 66 viaduct I saw the birds circling. “There they are; they’re schooling right there,” I said.
“Take me to the pier and I will drive myself to hospital ─ get back to those fish,” Julius said.
“You’re a real trooper, man,” I said. Thanks.
I dropped Julius off and he jumped up on the pier. “I will call you tonight and let you know what happened,” I said. I began to back up the boat and then turned it around.
“Hey,” Julius yelled at me.
“Did you HOOK me?”
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