Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Vaal River - Heritage Day

So myself, Craig Stockden and Jeandre van Schalkwyk decided to head down to the Vaal River near Potchefstroom to do some early season flyfishing for Smallmouth Yellowfish, or that was the plan.... What unfolded during the day was not what we expected or hoped for, that is fishing for you!

As we arrived at the venue we headed up to the pool above the rapids, fish where surfacing everywhere and we got all excited! We quickly rigged up and head down to the water! The fish where taking caddis adults that where emerging, we noticed two different species small white caddis and a dark brown caddis. Craig managed on hook-up in this period, unfortunately his tippet parted!Jeandre fished below and in the rapids with no success!

I decided to fish on the other side of the island in a deeper flowing rapid. I made my way across the rapid towards the opposite river bank and noticed some Sharptooth Catfish in the shallows. I changed to a 1x tippet and tied on the biggest fly that I had on me, a Red Eye Damsel, and selected a school of fish to target. I slapped the fly a few times near them and one catfish turned around and grabbed the fly. After a short fight the fish was safely in the net and I immediately phoned the other two to come and join me.

First fish for the day!

About 5 minutes later I was into my next fish, this one gave me a good bend in my new Sage One five weight, although it was no match for the serious backbone of this rod and after about 2 minutes the fish was in the net. Craig and Jeandre showed up just as I netted the fish and I could take a better photo of the fish.

The Upgrade
We continued to fish with little success and eventually Craig managed to hook a smaller catfish with a Black and Red Woolly bugger.

Craig with a Baby Catfish
After this fish we couldn't manage to get any catfish to take our flies and we decided to call it a day! Hopefully on our next outing the gold bars will give us a showing!

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