I was afraid the pond would be muddy after last week's monsoon, but I found Lake Surprise with normal clarity, and the in-growth of aquatic vegetation was just right--some pads breaking the surface and a little algae underneath, nothing thick like during last May's earlier heat trend. I began casting a Mepp's willow leaf spinner, about an eighth ounce, and it took awhile before I had a pickerel on, losing it, and experienced a terrific strike on the next cast, missing that. And then, on the next cast, I got hung up in a tree and snapped my only spinner off, besides an eighth-ounce spinnerbait, which seemed to ride too slowly through the water.
I fished it persistently, moving down the pond a couple of hundred yards, but nothing happened. I switched to a #7 Rapala floater and soon had a bass of about a pound on, losing it. I missed another hit on the surface (another bass), and yet another, and then caught the pickerel. I had time for only a stint this afternoon, less than an hour, but in this short time clued myself into something that might have really worked if I had a couple of more hours to just patiently twitch the plug here and there on the surface. Lake Surprise is very shallow and I might have found bass in a number of places near emerging pads.