We launched at Aqualand so that the return to the ramp wouldn’t be crazy with all of the other boaters trying to get in and out. You do have to pay a small fee to launch there unless you are a member. Arriving a little late at the ramp around 7:15 it looked like every parking spot was taken. Nonetheless we set out for the Flowery Branch creek channel as it flowed out to the main river. We were pulling Lead Core and followed the contour lines shadowing the deeper water. Being Sunday morning the boat traffic was very minimal. Having no luck here we decided to head toward back of the creek. We passed a couple of other Striper fisherman, waving and shouting out our luck. After passing one of them who was anchored under the second set of power lines we got hit and the fight was on. When I passed the rod to Dave somehow the bail opened and put way too much slack in the line. Thinking that the Striper got off because there was no resistance Dave started reeling in the line so that we could get it back out at the proper color. After a few cranks he realized that the fish was still on and apparently swimming towards us until it turned and shook his head and it was FISH ON. I slowed the boat to decrease the pressure put on the Striper and Dave as he began to reel. I started reeling in the other Lead Core so it would not get hung as we were bringing in the other line. Watching Dave being toyed by the Striper was exciting even for me. The Striper was getting closer and closer so I grabbed the net and extended the handle out full so that the Striper wouldn’t dart under the boat when he surfaced. When I lifted the Striper into the boat it looked like a really big Striper because its girth was very large. As it turned out it was only 29” but was a nice fish. After a couple of photos we released the Striper back into the lake on the Seaqualizer which made me feel good about knowing that he would a better chance at survival. We did not see him surface so we continued moving as far back into the creek as we could before we had to reel in our Lead Cores since their depth was 27’ and we were in 30’ of water with trees all around. We switched to an Umbrella Rig at this time keeping it only 60 feet behind the boat achieving a depth of 13’ in the shallower water. We did get hung up a few times and of course as we were trying to retrieve the rig we saw beaucoup Stripers all around. I immediately put the trolling motor down and we pulled out the Ben Parker spoon in hopes of dropping into the mix of Stripers and power reeling from the bottom but we could not get on them fast enough as they left the area as quickly as they came. We decided to get out in the river channel by LM18 and try our luck using Lead Core again. We motored out to the mouth of Flowery Branch only to discover that the waves were becoming like a “washing machine”. We still tried to fish the area and made at least one pull from the island. We did get a couple of hits but no takers which means that the Stripers were probably too small to eat the presentation of a 1oz Bucktail jig with a 4” trailer. We decided to call it a good day with only one Striper but keeping that memory of the fish-got-off-oh no-it didn’t and the head shake with its capture at the boat. When we got back to the ramp it was relatively easy to get the boat out as I had planned.