|Date of Report: Thursday, 22nd March 2018|
|Name: Andrew Fowler
Phone: 082 574 4262
Here in the Midlands we are all being reminded about what a wet summer feels like. Sorry to rub your faces in this Cape Town, but water is pouring out of everywhere! Midmar dam is overflowing (first time in 3 years), and the Bushmans, Umgeni, Mooi and all rivers in between have had a jolly good flushing.
As we go into March, the wild thunderstorms are abating. I think. Sort of. So, there is now lots of fast, clean water about.
An angler fished the Umgeni this week at Furth farm and got 2 small brownies (small browns were becoming a rarity post the drought….its good to know there are some next generation fish about!) . A buddy and I fished the Bushmans in its mid sections 2 weeks back. Interesting day. It was clean, and fast and we found fish in all the slower water. I would not go so far as to say they were packed in there like sardines, but there was generally more than one fish in any such slower water, and as the day progressed we got better at picking out those smooth glassy spots where the fish were.
My companion did well on the dry, but it would be true to say that save for 2 of his fish, they were smaller. I did spectacularly badly on the heavy nymph (a troglodyte), in that I raised close to a dozen fish in the 12 to 15 inch range and managed to land, 2 or 3 only! The damned things were jumping like rainbows, or churning in the white water, and getting the better of me!
Really good Browns continue to come out of the Bushmans. You probably saw some of those on Facebook.
The Mooi…I don’t know. But ask me after tomorrow.
Stillwater: The fishing hasn’t been spectacular, but remember that I am writing this at the end of the two hottest months of the year. The NFFC took the bold step of closing its popular stillwaters from early Jan until this last week (mid March), and severely capping the rod numbers on others, as water temperatures danced around the 22 degrees mark. As a result I have seen a dearth of returns. Like the advice of the club, I have also been attending to domestic matters more than I have been flyfishing. One day out on a high altitude lake a short while back revealed temps still up at 21.5 degrees, and with a pre-frontal wind howling, I blanked spectacularly. In the fisrt few days of opening some of those stillwaters, some good catches have come in, but it is on too small a sample to start declaring a trend.
Interesting to note that water temperatures on streams change faster. So, we are seeing temps of 16 to 18 degrees in the streams already, and the stillwaters are lagging behind. For my money I would therefore be on the streams for the next 2 weeks at least. Thereafter I will have a tough time deciding between a stream or a Stillwater, but either way, I plan to be fishing a whole lot more as autumn’s glorious weather arrives. This, my friends, is no time to be indoors: get out there!