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Thread: 2nd Trip LM to Chrisvd's waters

  1. #1
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    Default 2nd Trip LM to Chrisvd's waters

    Trip 2 to Chris’s water.

    It is not everyday you take the wife/girlfriend/otherhalf on a fishing trip, as it can go a bit pear shape if you spend too much time on the water.
    Graham Avery and I took the other halves with us to fish the section below the Van Der Kloof dam on Chris van der Post’s “private water”
    We left on Thursday at 05:00 with a 9 hour journey ahead of us. We decided to do it the traditional way wit proper PADKOS. Frikkadelle, drumsticks, boiled eggs and sandwiches, instead of the current ONESTOP burger routine.

    What a pleasure, the drive up to Three Sister and then left on the N12 was. With the plenty of rain in beginning of the year, which increased the ground water and some winter rain, the shoulder of the road was a treat for the eye. Light yellow, bright yellow, orange, pink, magenta, purple and white flowers carpeted the road side. Behind the farm fences, the sheep had their fair share of eating the budding flowers, but the shoulders provided ample eye candy. The bed of flowers made the trip north much shorter. The flower spectacle lasted probably 200km past Three Sisters.
    The first night was spent in Orania’s Oewer Hotel. A real surprise, crisp white percale cotton sheets, large beautiful decorated rooms. The restaurant was really good, much better steaks, than most of the more renowned Cape Town establishments. The local lamb chops was succulent and perfectly done. What was lacking in the speed of serving was more than compensated in the quality of the meal.
    We had a bit of evening fun, and tried our luck with fish activity all over, but could not convince any of the rising fish to take our flies. The next morning after breakfast we Klaas Viljoen took us to the river and the ladies went of a day at the Spa at the hotel.
    Graham and I will readily admit that we are no large mouth specialists, our knowledge limited to what we read in the magazines and the odd trip to the Richtersveld or Vaal River, fishing and listening to the locals.
    But to fish with Klaas Viljoen on his home water, hunting for Large Mouth Yellows was an eye opener. Klaas has caught HUNDERDS of Large mouth Yellows. Summer and winter, he catches them. He tells you of weekends where he has caught up to 30 Large mouth Yellows. Truly stuff to drool over. But with him guiding you, you realise why. His primary areas for searching for LM mouths are not those long almost impossible casts. Exploring those “prime LM holding spots, as per the magazines” is not his style. Walk and stalk, ambushing the LM with a 3 to 5 meter cast and a 2,5 meter leader, casting right next to the rocks on the side, fishing little “dead bays” 3 or 4 meter in diameter, and barely knee deep. When approaching these bays, STEALTH is the order of the day. Sneaking up, keeping low, and using cover to hide your profile, with exploratory casts searching little pockets of 50cm big in side of the river, between rocks and cracks.
    At first you think, this is crazy, this is not what I am used too, from some other LM hunters. No way, will there be fish in most of these spots. But then you start seeing a swirl here, a small 10cm fish, and tail walking over rocks to get away from some predator. Once a bait fish even landed on rocks, trying to get away, from a predator. I have to admit, when we started, I was dubious. Slowly but surely, I was converting.
    We fished the morning with not much luck, after a late lunch, we met the ladies at the Spa, highly impressed with our fishing trip, all looking in mint condition. We said our good byes and headed down stream for a second float trip to the evening camp spot on the banks of the river. The women taking the easy route with the vehicles, for a relaxed afternoon on the banks of the river, reading and a late after noon nap.
    I was snapped of a time or 2, landed a big small mouth on an 8cm streamer, Graham also missing a fish or 3. It was in this afternoon drift, where I observed the true class of Klaas. We approached a section where he said we should get out, and do a bit of walking and stalking. Graham and I both were getting a 50 meter section with some “prime” water. 2 sections of my “prime” water were what I would call, DEAD bays. Little bays calve to knee deep, absolutely dead still. I did 2 casts in this water and walked on. Leaving Klaas, to follow me, as I headed to the better looking water. Klaas approached the water with the speed of a chameleon, using the drowned trees to camouflage him. Cautiously, making cast after cast in this one DEAD bay, on the 8th cast, BOOOOM, into a fish. Jumping and shaking the fish was on. I ran the 20 odd meters to see the LM leaping out of the water, getting the camera ready. On the final retrieve, the fish jumped one more time, dislodging the hook.
    I was totally convinced and a believer in Klaas’s way with Large Mouth.
    We paddled the last 300meter to the campsite, to fish the water in front of the camp site.
    Arriving at the camp site, the ladies moved up to the tents, and sitting around a roaring fire, as the cooler evening air, made its presence felt. Us, trying our luck for the last hour.
    A big surprise for the ladies was proper beds with mattresses in the tents. Chris arrived from Bloemfontein, having completed his corporate duties, for a weekend of fishing and good times.
    After a lovely dinner and some amber liquids, we retired for the evening.
    The next morning, when we woke, the camp manager, cook, logistics manager- Spyker, had the fire roaring and the coffee ready. A glorious breakfast had us ready for the day. The ladies were taken for a day of visiting one of the Concentration camps and sight seeing of Bushmen rock paintings.
    We took the vehicles, heading for a different stretch of water. Another couple of misses and snap-offs, Graham landed a SM also on an 8cm streamer. Which showed us, that SM yellows must be much more piscavorous than what most people believe.
    The Van der Kloof dam, has a hydro electricity unit, built into the wall, every day, depending on the demand, they start the generators, by opening the bottom sluices. The river changes from a gentle meandering stream to a raging beast in a matter of minutes. Lunch time was the when of these rising waters affected us the first time, probably the water from the previous day reaching us. As it was a wide section, the effect was not so spectacular, but to see the water rising in a wide section of the river, by more than a meter made us realise, than you have to be wide awake. We rowed to the vehicles, and took of Van der Kloof dam wall. Being a Saturday and very warm, there would be no need to start the generators, by opening the sluices. The flow should be low and perfect.
    We fished the stretch below the bridge, RIGHT up to the dam wall. With another couple of snap-offs, fish coming off and eventually a LM to take some photos, we called it at day at 16:45. We rowed the crocs to the boat ramp. Enough time to have a beer or 2 and load the bakkies with the boats and rods. The scheduled time of the sluices to open at 18:00, with the warning of loud siren. At 17:00 Klaas and Chris said, the “noise” is not right. We looked at the river and noticed that something is changing. In 15 minutes, the water level rose by 2meters. Transforming the gentle flow to a 300cumec raging angry river. WOW, that was spectacular.
    We drove off the Chris’s Hunting camp for the last night, with hot showers and another afternoon nap; the ladies were waiting for us, with drinks in the hand, when we arrived. We had a hot shower, courtesy of the old fashioned ‘Donkie’ water heater.
    The evening was spent having lovely company, around the campfire, reliving the experiences of the last 2 days, before we retired for evening.
    The Sunday morning, we had an early farmhouse breakfast, before we took the road back to Cape Town. Again the flowers next to the road made the journey so much nicer. The “stop and go” system was very kind, with only 2 of the 8 or 9 “stop and go” sections, actually stopping us for about the sum total of 8 minutes. Thus saving a probable 1 hour or more on the trip.
    Now I can wait to go back and try out my new found knowledge on more Large Mouths.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Korrie Broos

    Don't go knocking on Death's door, ring the bell and run like hell. He hates it. (anon)
    Nymphing, adds depth to your fly fishing.
    Nymphing, is fly fishing in another dimension

  2. #2
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    Default

    some more photos
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Korrie Broos

    Don't go knocking on Death's door, ring the bell and run like hell. He hates it. (anon)
    Nymphing, adds depth to your fly fishing.
    Nymphing, is fly fishing in another dimension

  3. #3
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    We were very blessed by the weather.
    Perfect weather right thru the whole trip, with the one evening being a bit fresh, every day, the temps being 26 or 27 degrees.
    Hardly any wind.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Korrie Broos

    Don't go knocking on Death's door, ring the bell and run like hell. He hates it. (anon)
    Nymphing, adds depth to your fly fishing.
    Nymphing, is fly fishing in another dimension

  4. #4
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    Cape Town
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    another photo
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Korrie Broos

    Don't go knocking on Death's door, ring the bell and run like hell. He hates it. (anon)
    Nymphing, adds depth to your fly fishing.
    Nymphing, is fly fishing in another dimension

  5. #5
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    Sounds like a great trip.....woudnt mind doing something similar in the future. Thanks for the report back.
    stephen is wishing he was fishing location x right now.......



    Stephen Smith

  6. #6
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    Dankie Korrie.

    Excellent report, relived our trip given some of the info you so handsomely described.
    Barend Esterhuizen Pr Eng

    "But engineering isn't about perfect solutions; it's about doing the best you can with limited resources."
    The last lecture, Randy Pausch

  7. #7

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    Thanks for a great report Korrie, it was great having you guys down here. I'm glad you enjoyed the trip. If only we landed all the fish that broke us of, not to speak of the one's that wasn't hooked, but from witch we got strikes, that would have turned the trip into something else. What Korrie did not mention is that Korrie and me both got broken of with 3.9kg tippet on the strike. Klaas got broken of with 5kg tippet after having the fish on for some time. It could easely have been 5 largies landed if we could have just gotten them in hand.

    It was good fishing with you again Korrie.

  8. #8
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    Thanks for sharing Korrie. Excellent report and pics.
    Bryan Williams

    My Biggest worry is that my wife will sell my fishing gear for what I said I paid for it!

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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by chrisvd View Post
    Thanks for a great report Korrie, it was great having you guys down here. I'm glad you enjoyed the trip. If only we landed all the fish that broke us of, not to speak of the one's that wasn't hooked, but from witch we got strikes, that would have turned the trip into something else. What Korrie did not mention is that Korrie and me both got broken of with 3.9kg tippet on the strike. Klaas got broken of with 5kg tippet after having the fish on for some time. It could easely have been 5 largies landed if we could have just gotten them in hand.

    It was good fishing with you again Korrie.
    Thanx for mentioning this again Chris; very noble...

    But it will be a STRAFDOP!

    Maybe you should consider a different brand of tippet Or release the drag on the reel a bit...

    Just kidding - Christo and myself are on our way to today's Largie hunt on PRIVATE WATER, hold thumbs.
    Barend Esterhuizen Pr Eng

    "But engineering isn't about perfect solutions; it's about doing the best you can with limited resources."
    The last lecture, Randy Pausch

  10. #10
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    Thanks Korrie, nice report, sounds like you guys had a great time with some good fishing but why were there so many break offs. Is this the norm there Chris?

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