Albert falls: are you ready?

2010-08-21 00:00

HEY Bassers, it’s that time again.

Recently Garth and I, accompanied by BETT contestants Team Snake Eyes, made a two-day trip to the prime destination of Goudetrouw Dam. Although we were just there to have some relaxing fun, we could not help bringing our competitive spirits into the mix. Between the four of us, we decided to have a “friendly” two-man team tournament with the five heaviest fish per team earning bragging rights.

With respect to the fact that the fish would be preparing to spawn, it was decided to release all fish caught immediately after weighing and to manually record the weights per team and therefore base the day’s results on the honour system.

Mark and Brian took an early lead in the first hour with a solid limit caught on crankbaits off a rocky bank. By this stage we only had two fish and decided to change things up slightly. We started jumping from spot to spot and soon had a reasonable limit, including a two-kilogramme fish caught by Garth. We then moved to an offshore area and let the Football Jigs loose in the hopes of attracting some of the bigger fish we know live there.

This worked and we started accumulating a pretty decent looking bag. Late in the afternoon I was fortunate enough to find one of the larger resident fish weighing in at 3,6 kg — the largest of the day. This put our five heaviest fish at 13,2 kg, sneaking us ahead of our friendly rivals who also weighed in an impressive bag at 9,2 kg.

I will be returning to Goudetrouw again next week for three days to entertain the SA Bass magazine crew, as well as the Goya Trading team, to launch some new products and compile a few magazine features. I am sure I will have some stories to tell after that.

The annual Albert Falls Bass Tournament will be taking place next weekend. Anticipation is heightening as anglers start preparing to do whatever it takes to win the main prize of a fully rigged boat.

The fish, unfortunately, do not seem to be as enthused as the competitors as reports coming in from the anglers practising, are lacking positive content. With just a week to go before the tournament we can only hope that the pre-spawn movements start to take effect.

I have been receiving a few e-mails from competitors asking for any advice on what to target for the event. What I would suggest is to, first of all, look for areas where you think the fish will spawn. This would be likely looking gravel banks, offshore humps and points. With the level of the dam being down, my guess is that the fish will spawn closer to the shallower beak lines relating to these spawning areas.

Therefore, concentrate your efforts on the first drop-off or structure change adjacent to these areas. My feeling is the larger female fish will not be on the spawning areas as yet, but rather just off these zones.

Martin de Kock, Garth Liefeldt and I will be hosting another informative bass fishing seminar at the Fish Eagle in Victoria Road at 6 pm on Thursday September 16. We will be educating anglers on the pre-spawn, spawn and post-spawn habits of bass and how to target them during this process.

Contact Brandon or Craig at the Fish Eagle on 033 345 4224 or thefisheagle@telkomsa.net. There is no cost to attend and complimentary food and drinks will be served.

So get out on the lake and catch some bass, and remember to release your catch alive to prolong the sustainability of our resource. E-mail me with reports, pictures and questions at zorthewitt@hotmail.com.

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