Category Archives: fishing

Huge Kob (Revisited)

App. 66kg

App. 66kg

I just wanted to follow up on a post that I put up a while back regarding a monster Kabeljou (Kob) that was taken at Haga Haga in February 2010. I don’t think many people actually thought the above picture could be real, but rest assured, it was. It was caught by one Jonathan Timm who was kind enough to give us the full story. I hope you are all as jealous as I am! Here it is:

“I went to Haga Haga (Eastern Cape) this past weekend with a few mates. The sea was quite cold and the swell was quite big. No luck in the morning, but at about 12:30pm we were scratching for blue fish and I managed to hook this beauty on light tackle.

I really didn’t think it was an edible. I thought I had fowl hooked a Raggy or something. At one stage the fish was swimming to the right, down the coast towards a huge outcrop of rocks, BUT to my delight it changed direction and swam in the direction of “scattered brick” to the left of where we were fishing. Luckily this beast stayed beyond the rocks/backline in the deeper water for the majority of the fight. This powerful fish peeled at least 250 meters of line on its numerous runs.

Back to the water

Back to the water

The only way I could gain any line on the fish was to use the beach and walk back up towards the bush line. After 40 minutes or so, I managed to get the fish into the shallows. Seeing the large white underbelly from where I was fighting the fish from, I thought it was a huge Raggy swimming belly up. My mate shouted “KOB, KOB, BIG KOB!…” I couldn’t believe my eyes!!!!! I was flabbergasted…

I ran to my bag to get the camera. We took a couple of photos and took its measurement. I had my tagging kit, but in all the confusion and me wanting to release it quickly, I didn’t even think about tagging it… After 45 minutes of reviving the fish in chest deep water, the fish had gained enough strength to swim off.

What an awesome sight, seeing such an awesome specimen swim away.

Going home

Going home

Tackle used:

Rod: Errol Homes custom made high modulus stroke 4

Reel: Daiwa Saltist 40

Line: 0.40mm / 11.5kg Kingfisher Giant Abrasion

Leader: 0.60mm

Hook: 2/o Daiichi

Bait: Pink prawn

 

Fish Weigh/Measurements:

Total Length: 1.83 meters

ORI calculations: 66 kilograms”

Mr. Timm, we don’t know what to say. Catch of a life time!


More Golden Slabs

Slab of Gold

Slab of Gold

Kyle and I hit the Vaal River again this past Thursday (28th March) in pursuit of one of our favourite quarry, the Smallmouth Yellowfish, as the waters begin to cool ahead of winter. The river was flowing at probably just under 20 cubics and was also fairly murky with visibility probably sitting at about 15 centimeters. I wasn’t expecting much and to be honest we never took a single fish till about 11 o’ Clock. Once we worked out the pattern though we managed to pull a fair number of fish out, probably ranging between 0.5 and 3 kilograms.

Kyles Catch

Kyles Catch

the Pattern was quite simple. basically it consisted of bright green flies (such as rock worms) being fished in fairly deep water, but it took us a while to figure this out. interestingly not a single fish was taken in shallow rapids, which tells me that the fish might be moving slowly towards deeper pools already in preparation for winter.

Another Great Yellow

Another Great Yellow

Above is a picture of another nice sized Yellow. This one took me for a pretty long walk down the rapids before I was able to net it. All in all it turned out to be an excellent day on the water and I did not lose even half the number of fish that I normally do. This could probably be attributed mainly to a new rig that Kyle showed me, but if I could add any advice it would be to fish with only 2 flies. The reasoning for this is that with 3 there is just so much more potential for the loose flies to snag up under water while fighting a monster fish.

A Decent Yellow

A Decent Yellow


Fat Bass

Just some quick photos of a lovely sized bass caught this past weekend by one of our fishing buddies Kyle. He took this quite deep just off the weed line of some under water vegetation. He used a watermelon red Fat Albert grub. They seem to work very well this time of year.

Big Fish

Big Fish

1.8 kg

1.8 kg

 


Yellow Summer!!!

Slab of Gold

Slab of Gold

After a loooooong winter period tis finally the season once again to be jolly. Spring has arrived, water temperatures have risen, and the smallmouth yellow has moved back into the rapids. What an exciting/frustrating day we had had on the Vaal this past weekend. The fish are definitely on the bite as we managed to land a couple of large small mouth yellows and obviously lose many even ‘bigger’ ones.

Clints Quarry

Clints Quarry

I took a good friend of mine Clinton “the rod smasher” Van Zyl to splash the water, and what a day he had. He first of all landed one of the largest yellows I’ve seen in real life and then almost landed an even bigger one later that day. The later breaking his rod as he tried to bring it to the surface. It was big. I would estimate close on the 4 kilo mark but we all know the story of the one that got away, right.

Lovely Yellow

Lovely Yellow

I had a relatively frustrating day on the water, landing 3 yellows myself: one tiny, one very large and one somewhere in between, with no scale to quantify the bounty. Sadly I lost more yellows than I ever have in a single sitting, many of which felt like absolute boats. They were heavy, uncontrollable, and impossible to turn. I guess I still haven’t mastered the art of fighting a yellowfish. As I watch others seamlessly managing to keep their fish by their feet once hooked, I cannot stop them from running downstream and breaking me off. I break trace after trace and it feels at the time as if there is nothing I can do to turn the fish in the strong currents.

Many Fish Had Sores

Many Fish Had Sores

Well there is always next time I guess, and next time I’m going back with heavier tackle to catch the ones that got away…

 

 

 

 


Trout Time

Trout at night, what do you know?

Well summer is officially over and the cold weather has moved in, which brings us to that time of year when we angling enthusiasts attempt to soften the blows of winter’s fishlessness by migrating up to the ever majestic trout water of the winter wonderland that is Dullstroom. On the 8th of June a couple of us headed up to little trout beck in search of our favourite cold water species, the illusive rainbow trout, which I must add has become not only my favourite cold water species but also one of my favourite species full stop.

Craig’s beauty

We arrived at our venue late the Friday afternoon to find a couple of the lads slapping the water to no avail. Only after nightfall did our first fish hit dry land. This was with the arrival of Chris “the gold digger” le Roux, who (having just pulled up in his car) jumped out, took my brand new Explorer Guide series II out my hand, made his first cast and subsequently landed a fish in front of many a dropped jaw. Very impressive Chris, now give me my rod back.

Another decent rainbow

After a very well behaved and gentlemanly friday night we scurried out of bed the following morning to slap the water some more. The weather seemed top notch from the inner side of the lounge behind our coffee cups, but then we stepped outside. In short the wind was howling, and the temperature had dropped staggeringly with the arrival of a vicious cold front. We struggled a little but a few fish were taken by our more experienced fly fishers.

My only fish

Unfortunately I only managed a morning session that day and my trip was cut short but i still managed to land a fair rainbow and picked up on similar patterns that we have in the past. In short, the fish that were taken were almost exclusively taken on strikingly orange flies, my favourite being the Pancora wooly bugger, but many also being buttoned on pure orange buggers as well. This always seems to be the go too colour at this time of year, and I suggest it dominate your fly box during the coldest months.

 


Another Day at the Local

Here are just a few pics from another trip we did to our local dam. Again we were taking a lot of fish on spinnerbait (chartreuse white) as well as on fluke. We noticed at one stage the larger fish holding close to an underwater rock pile. They were taking so tentatively that initialy it took about 4 casts for me to realise that the tention I kept feeling on the line wasn’t just my lure getting hooked up on underwater structure. A solid reminder for me to strike whenever in doubt. How many fish have you lost on presumption?

Another local fish

Another local fish

Kyle's spinnerbait fish

Kyle's spinnerbait fish

Taken on fluke

Taken on fluke

Another good fish

Another good fish


Easter Angling

Stanley wedge bloodspot spinner

Stanley wedge bloodspot spinner

It’s almost winter, which means the mad rush to catch our last few bags of fish, before the cold moves in, has begun. A good friend of mine Kyle and I hit one of our local dams, during the Easter weekend, to target some largemouth bass. What a surprise we got. Offloading our float tubes from the cars this early Saturday morning, we couldn’t help but complain about the cold weather and how bad the fishing was probably going to be. We were wrong.

Taken on a chartreuse and white spinnerbait

Taken on a chartreuse and white spinnerbait

We ended up having a great day on the water with most of our fish taken on, believe it or not, the spinnerbait. I was quite surprised that under such chilly conditions (conditions which usually demand finesse fishing) that the spinnerbait was our most successful strategy. The spinnerbait that worked for me was a white bloodspot Stanley wedge with a gold Colorado leaf and a large silver willow leaf trailing behind. And I picked up a lot on that.

Small fish taken on fluke

Small fish taken on fluke

Kyle had similar fortune on a spinnerbait boasting a white chartreuse skirt, I can’t remember the blade configuration though. I don’t usually have such luck on spinnerbait but Kyle showed me a thing or 2 about slow rolling a spinner in and around thick grassy cover. If I could share one thing of importance that I took away from this trip, it would be: Don’t to be afraid to fish your spinnerbaits through thicker structure types like submerged grass and weed. Fish it through with confidence and if it starts to feel a little heavy, simply give it one or 2 short sharp jerks to tear any accumulated grass free. Most of the time this works fairly well, and bass like nothing more than to destroy an intruder that comes tearing over its head through thick grassy cover.

Biggest of the day

Biggest of the day

I also took a few on a watermelon seed super fluke fished slowly with a small split shot pressed to the nose. I fished this relatively deep in pockets between thick underwater mats of grass. All in the all the fishing was pretty good and I cant help but be hopeful that there might just be one or two more weekends of bass angling left in the season.


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