You've come to love the trips to the inlet. It has become an August ritual.
The water level continues way down, and the wind on this day is way up.
You share the north end with a pair of Ospreys, and a pair of Eagles that periodically try to run them off. As you're crossing the lake this bird passes over you, plunges into the lake right at the inlet, and rises with a good-sized trout in its talons. You wonder if it's a good sign.
But when you get there the fishing--your way of fishing--is slow.
The wind moderates and rises bloom here and there. Small trout. You catch more than enough on a Callibaetis dry.
The Ospreys seem to be outfishing you. Their fish seem to be bigger, too.
You find a bigger trout working in two feet of water. He isn't coming up very often, but when he does you can see his dorsal and tail flash in the evening light. He's not big, but he might go a foot. You go for him.
He resists your efforts for a long time. You keep catching little guys instead of him. Finally, you strip in the Callibaetis dry as seductively as you can, and he breaks. It's a lovely take, and a pretty little fish that feels like a trophy.
Very little happens after that--except for the activities of the Ospreys and the Eagles, and another raid by the Otter family.
You wonder if the days of the inlet are over, if the water is finally so low that the risk for bigger fish is finally too great.
You kick back to the truck thinking it's time to explore other areas of the lake. It's been a good run at the inlet. You'll miss it.