|Date of Report: Saturday, 2nd September 2017|
|Name: Andrew Fowler
Phone: 082 574 4262
It seems we have had a bit of a late winter. August was as cold, if not colder than July, with more frost, and even a bit of snow on the berg, and lower too.
So Stillwater temperatures warmed from the usual 7 or 8 degrees in late June to as much as 10 degrees, but then, as best I can tell, stuck there for all of July and August.
Then AuGUST is allegedly named this for its awful berg winds. And we have only had one such warm ,howling gale, and that was right at the end of August.
The result is that it feels quite wintery around here still. Perhaps it would be more accurate to say that it feels like our milder than normal winter has been extended. Either way, it hasn’t rained yet (not properly anyway), so it is bone dry, and the fact that the river season officially opens tomorrow (I am typing this on the eve of the 31st), doesn’t make it feel any more like spring!
The streams got a good boost of rain in May, so they have flowed quite well through the winter, and I am optimistic about the trout spawning season. All we need now is spring rain that arrives early enough, and we will be able to look back and say it was a great spawning and Trout survival season!
So let’s see what the rivers offer up in the next few weeks. I see that many NFFC members have booked for opening day and opening week-end. I also know that last season was bumper for big river fish, and I have every reason to believe that the big ones are still around, so generally there is a lot of anticipation for the river season.
As far as stillwaters go: as usual it is “Ja/Nee”…good days and bad days. A whole lot of guys go and bemoan blank days, and then along come the usual crowd, who fish often and pick the weather, and BOOM, they turn the bad news on it’s head. George Harris got a bumber fish a few weeks ago that people are still talking about, and just this week someone else fished the same water and said “dead as a doornail”.(…and that is a direct quote!). Wayne Stegen and his mates were out on a private water and got 14 fish in a day this week. But if you talk to Wayne he says they really don’t feel like they cracked the code. Fish were feasting on daphnia one end of the dam, and on mayflies the other end. There was just no pattern. Some people moan about not catching fish and others moan about there not being a pattern! Like I say “Ja/Nee”!
I can claim to be on both ends of the scale. I had a cracker day on a Stillwater out on the Lotheni Road a few weeks ago, catching a lot of fish on dries and small nymphs. Perhaps catching is a bit of an overstatement…let’s say lots of action shall we….nicks and bumps, and enough landed to make my net stink. Then I was back at the same water the day a front blew in, and I didn’t have a touch in 4 hours. Ja/nee.
Flies? Midges. Midge pupae and midge larvae. That’s what I am concentrating on in September. “Black and red” we refer to it as: A red bloodworm pattern on point (an atomic worm or a san juan worm), and a black suspender midge on the dropper. On that I am experimenting with a reverse tied parasol midge emerger thingy. “What the hell is that?” one of my mates asked when he saw it. Ja/Nee…watch this space….it could just be the next best thing.
I will share it after further testing!
A pretty rainbow