And poof! July is pretty much gone…
The cold is almost gone and the summer months are coming.
Top tip: Bucktail jigs are one of the most versatile lures that you can own. They come in a variety of sizes from 1/16th on an ounce all the way up to 6oz (and more). Bucktails are essentially a lead head (hook with a sinker moulded to it) with some bucktail tied to the shank. They come in a variety of colours and all of them produce fish. For the surf and offshore, chartreuse/white, all white and pink/white are the three best colours. The key to success is allowing the bucktail to bounce up and down on the retrieve. Cast the lure out, allow it to sink and then work it back with a jigging action. The pace of the retrieve can be varied until you get a bite.
Offshore: The garrick and snoek have been the main fish caught over the past week. There is plenty of action to warm you up in this cold weather.
North – The north coast has seen the bulk of the gamefish action with variety and size being better than the central or south sections.
The snoek have been feeding well in the mornings with fillet baits being the top producing method for boat and ski anglers. Most of the spots along the north coast have been a bit tricky to launch in the last few weeks so please spend some time watching the sets and planning your way out. The deeper areas have seen the bigger couta with most of the top spots being kept as a close secret. Live bait has been the key to the big fish.
Central – The Durban coast has also seen plenty of fish. There have been snoek off Umhlanga and Blue Lagoon. The early mornings are the times to target these fish. There have been garrick around on the backline and plugs and live baits have been the main methods for these fish. Make sure to keep your eyes open when on the backline as a rogue wave can pop up out of nowhere.
South – The south coast has also seen its share of tricky launches so the same applies to both the new guys to the area and the old hands…
Fishing the inshore areas has seen some good garrick and snoek taken by those trolling live baits and fillets. There have been some big kingies that have jumped on as well.
Those boats going deeper have seen some decent tuna and some wahoo. These have been taken on trolled lures and speed trolling live bonito. Make sure to get the bonito back in to the water quickly as they do not keep well.
Rock and Surf:
The edibles have been the main actors in the show this past week. The north coast has seen a few inedibles already…exciting times!
North – The north coast has seen a couple of inedibles for the anglers looking for more of a fight. The main targets up north have been edibles. This has been a bit tricky with a large portion of the ledges and reefs being sanded up. Hopefully these big seas will open them up. Those that have fished up north managed a mix of edibles with chokka and prawn being the baits of choice.
Central – Blue Lagoon has seen some proper garrick being caught. Live bait has been the hardest part of the fishing. Find a decent bait and get it out, you are in the game… The rest of the Durban coast has seen a good mix of edibles with very few inedibles reported. Shad have been around, but the action is patchy. Make sure to pack light so you can move with the action.
South – The south coast has been a hot spot for the last three weeks. There have been plenty of kob and bronze bream caught and some amazing numbers mentioned. The reefs of Trafalgar have been the main drawcard down south. Some of the areas have required a long cast so make sure your tackle is up to the task. Once again prawn and chokka have been the best baits. Red prawn has taken the lead over pink prawn. There have also been some decent garrick coming out on the south coast as well.
The cold weather is still making the early mornings tricky but there is plenty of fish for the intrepid anglers.
Bass – Inanda and Albert Falls have been fishing very well with Midmar also doing well. Unfortunately, these dams fish best from a boat as access to the better spots is only possible from offshore. Those stuck on the bank will be better suited fishing Hazlemere and parts of Inanda.
Curly tail worms and grubs in green pumpkin or junebug have been the most consistent producers from the shore. The boat anglers have had a host of tactics working with dropshots working in the deep and jigs in the shallows.
Carp – Carp fishing has been consistent over the last week or two. The frontal conditions have made fishing slow on some days but persistence in your spot and making sure you keep the areas you are fishing well-stocked with bait has been the ticket to a full net of carp.
Most of the dams, both private and public, have seen decent fishing. A mix of flavours have been reported as the best, but banana and garlic have been the most consistent.
Trout – The stillwaters have been fishing well even though the fishing has slowed down from previous weeks. Stripping streamers on sinking lines around drop-offs has been a great way to target the bigger fish. Make sure to use a decent leader and not to go too light as the fish hit the fly hard!
The fly anglers have also had a lot of fun with the scalies in the rivers. If you have not tried this yet, give it a go. Pop in to one of our stores to get the right tackle to get you started.
Herewith this week’s report from Jan at the Kingfisher in PMB – “Well, well, well … with another massive frontal system sitting off the bottom of Africa, it looks like the Naysayers might have a Round 3 of warnings to their credit! With prefrontal conditions usually the best time to be on the water, time to get on the water and put those lines out as conditions are set to deteriorate at a rate of rapid knots from late this weekend and through early next week…
“Poor conditions” aside, as reported recently, the wild weather certainly has had a positive effect on the fishing and brought the big ‘un out to play. As mentioned previously, this winter season has seen some of the BEST fishing that The Midlands has to offer … and it is now confirmed that The Midlands waters are home to WHALES … yes, that is correct : WHALES (of the trout variety)!
While a few anglers of the Natal Fly Fishers Club weren’t on the receiving end of the trout’s graciousness in the last week as the barometer fell through the floor and water temperature nudged ever lower (returns are listing temps of around 8deg.C), other returns listed some great fish on the feed in the prefrontal conditions : nothing under 15 inches / 38cm, with the remainder all larger, and a good number of fish in the 19-21 inch / 48-53cm bracket. But then came a return that listed two trout of rather EPIC proportions : one cock fish of 25-27 inches / 63-68cm (confirmed at 65cm and over 8 pounds / 3.5kg) and another hen of 27-29 inches / 68-74cm (confirmed at 72cm and over 12 pounds / 5.5kg) … here be the WHALES mentioned above! From the report : ‘…never caught a salmon before, but that’s what it looked like … didn’t know that trout get this big in South Africa!”. Personal Bests for both anglers and the hen most likely a fish of a lifetime – almost certainly the biggest fish recorded in the history of the NFFC … Congrats to the anglers concerned!
With a little over 5 weeks to go before Opening Day of the trout river season, some more snow on the top of The ‘ Berg will make for some more welcome melt, keeping the rivers off the bare bones … the better the flow at the start of the season, the earlier the better fishing starts, otherwise the first couple of weeks can be (very) slow.
We reported last week that the South African Youth Fly Fishing Team were at the 20th FIPS Mouche World Youth Fly Fishing Championships in Mostar, Bosnia & Herzegovina … the team finished a most creditable 6th (out of 11 teams) – Congrats to all concerned.
While Youth were gallivanting across the globe, sweltering in the northern hemisphere summer temps of 40deg+!, the SA Ladies Nationals were taking place at Dullstroom in the rather frigid conditions of the last frontal system. In fact, the weather worsened to such an extent that session 4 was postponed to the following days and a fly-tying competition was held in its place! Taking the Team Gold was Gauteng North A – and Individual Gold going to Marelise Henys also from GN-A – biggest fish stretching the tape to 52.7cm / 20 inches brown trout for Kristine Paige from GN-B. KZN Ladies coming in 4th out of the 7 competing teams. Congrats to all medal and trophy winners, and kudos to the Ladies for sticking to it in the atrocious conditions!
This weekend sees Leg3 of the TOPS Corporate Challenge taking place on the waters around Nottingham Road. It looks like the anglers might, just, get the job done before the REAL weather pulls in, so <fingers crossed> and Tight Lines to all – Jan has a couple new flies in the water with mates that are fishing – look forward to reporting next week.
The cold might have slowed the bass down somewhat, but word from the waters is that there still some good fish around – with both Albert Falls and Midmar producing. Anglers are keeping cards close to their chest in the slower conditions … no pic no proof as they say! … while there is only a “rumour” of a 4.5kg bucket mouth from Midmar, but thanks to Ruan Elliot for a confirmed report of a solid 2.64kg fish after a tough day on Albert Falls.
Carp are apparently being a bit iffy on Alberts, but are producing well at Midmar. Conditions being as they are, the only way to find out is the tried and tested method of putting line to water! Let’s those fish guy.” Thanks Jan.
Please remember to leave the areas that you fish in a better condition than when you got there. Take a few moments to pick up some litter and take it to the nearest bin. Tight lines and screaming reels.
Please send any info about fishing or fish caught in your area to firstname.lastname@example.org
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