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Thread: South African rivers - recommendations please

  1. #1

    Default South African rivers - recommendations please

    Afternoon all

    I've decided to take a trout-bumming career break after spending the last 10 years in the UK. At the moment I'm thinking of chasing the trout season between the hemispheres - very initial planning has me thinking of Tasmania, NZ, South Korea, Japan, the USA, possibly Canada and finishing up in Ireland.

    But before all that I'm going to return home, see some family, and then spend a bit of time familiarising myself with the rivers and streams of SA. I haven't done any river fishing in SA before so the prospect of having a bit of time to travel around my home country getting to know rivers and places I have read a lot about is quite exciting. I'm not sure when next I will have the chance to fish in SA again, so I'd like to give it a really good go.

    Just after a few tips - this is likely to happen in December/January. I'm thinking of spending a week in the Berg in KZN, a week in the Eastern Cape and a week in the Western Cape. Are there any rivers I should definitely not miss out on fishing? How do I access them in terms of permits/licences? Any great places to stay? If anyone wants to meet up to fish, that would be great too!

    Western Cape - will I need to become a member of CPS or can I access the rivers on a day permit or as a guest?

    Eastern Cape - would Rhodes be a good place to base myself?

    KZN - this seems the most difficult to plan as the area is large and the fishing a little less concentrated. Where to even begin?

    Thanks for any advice.

    I have got to know the rivers and streams of Wales quite well over the past 5 years, and I will miss them. It helped that last weekend I caught the fish below from a tributary of the upper Wye. If it's the last fish I catch in Wales, I'd have no problem with that! If you're thinking of a place to fish or find yourself in the UK, I can only recommend Wales.

    "The best way to shrink a fish is with with a ruler - the best way to grow a fish is with a beer."

  2. #2
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    Justin Baxter...a blast from the past....how you keeping!!! Sounds like a dream trip, hope it all works out. KZN rivers I know about are bushmens, mooi, and many rivers in southern drak including umzimkulu and tributaries....cracking fishing, scenery and lots of places to stay.
    Cocksy
    Last edited by beefybovril; 09-08-14 at 06:56 PM.

  3. #3
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    Start in northern Drakensberg...giants castle, injasuthi and then kamberg and then move south to verge,even, lotheni and then to Underberg and swart berg and then on to Rhodes.

  4. #4

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    Hi Matt! Almost 17 years now... Cheers for the replies. Bushmens and Umzimkulu are both definitely on my list. I will check out the Lotheni and Injasuthi - I read somewhere the Lotheni can be a tough place to fish! Looking for a few places that are a little remote and 'untouched' and happy to hike in. I might have to think of spending more time there...
    "The best way to shrink a fish is with with a ruler - the best way to grow a fish is with a beer."

  5. #5
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    Im thinking of maybe hiking up into the berg and doing some fishing around december. Probably up into lesotho if you're interested

    Sent from my GT-I9500 using Tapatalk

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by karoo View Post
    Im thinking of maybe hiking up into the berg and doing some fishing around december. Probably up into lesotho if you're interested

    Sent from my GT-I9500 using Tapatalk
    Hi - this has potential. I will send you a private message shortly.
    "The best way to shrink a fish is with with a ruler - the best way to grow a fish is with a beer."

  7. #7
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    Justin:
    When in the Eastern cape, I suggest you first base yourself for a couple of days in/near Maclear. The Maclear flyfishing club has access to some lovely water.
    After that take a drive over the pass and stay in Rhodes town. By staying in town, you can get beats easily from Walkerbouts Inn. Also, town is fairly high up the system, which will likely be necessary for clear water in Dec/Jan as this is obviously the rainy season. There is lovely water in the Bell and Bok, but also be sure to find time to fish the Riflespruit. And if you can find clear water in the lower Bok, you can catch yellowfish and trout in the same sections.

    PM me if you want some ideas about more untouched water to hike to in that area.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Circus View Post
    Justin:
    Also, town is fairly high up the system, which will likely be necessary for clear water in Dec/Jan as this is obviously the rainy season.
    I have fished in the area a few times over summer and be prepared to chance clear water. Its just a matter of being flexible and being able to drive an hour to go fishing if needed. Sometimes you strike it lucky and the Kraai offers amazing yellowfishing, otherwise the freestone heads will provide some relief from the rain since they clear up so quickly. Just dont get stuck in a valley during a cloud burst, be very very careful! Have a great time and welcome back!

    Cheers

    J
    Check out some of my FF pics - http://www.flickr.com/photos/30562135@N07/

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Circus View Post
    Justin:
    When in the Eastern cape, I suggest you first base yourself for a couple of days in/near Maclear. The Maclear flyfishing club has access to some lovely water.
    After that take a drive over the pass and stay in Rhodes town. By staying in town, you can get beats easily from Walkerbouts Inn. Also, town is fairly high up the system, which will likely be necessary for clear water in Dec/Jan as this is obviously the rainy season. There is lovely water in the Bell and Bok, but also be sure to find time to fish the Riflespruit. And if you can find clear water in the lower Bok, you can catch yellowfish and trout in the same sections.

    PM me if you want some ideas about more untouched water to hike to in that area.
    Quote Originally Posted by JadeDsantos View Post
    I have fished in the area a few times over summer and be prepared to chance clear water. Its just a matter of being flexible and being able to drive an hour to go fishing if needed. Sometimes you strike it lucky and the Kraai offers amazing yellowfishing, otherwise the freestone heads will provide some relief from the rain since they clear up so quickly. Just dont get stuck in a valley during a cloud burst, be very very careful! Have a great time and welcome back!

    Cheers

    J
    Thanks both, this is great advice - just what I was after. I will be flexible and willing to drive a distance to find good fishing.

    Circus - I will definitely PM you closer to the time to get some more info on the waters you mention, thanks for the offer.

    Now just for a bit of advice on the rivers around Cape Town, and I'm sorted! How easy is it to access the Lourens for example? I have seen some great photos of this little stream and would like to fish it in addition to some of the bigger names if I can gain access.
    "The best way to shrink a fish is with with a ruler - the best way to grow a fish is with a beer."

  10. Default

    In South Africa there are generally 2 types of stream/river fisherman ... Those that have fished Rhodes, and those that still want to fish Rhodes!
    Mario Geldenhuys
    Smallstream fanatic, plus I do some other things that I can't tell you about

    "All the tips or magical insights in the world can't replace devotion, dedication, commitment, and gumption - and there is not secret in that" - Glenn Brackett

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