Bring on the cold fronts!

2010-04-24 00:00

THE New Hanover Bass Competition junior winner, Tyron McGarry, and his brother Jason redeemed their prize with me at Inanda recently. I had decided to change venues at the last minute as Albert Falls was not exactly up to standard.

We launched early and got to work with Topwater Frogs and Zaras. The bite was slow so we sped up a bit, changing to Spinnerbaits and erratically fished weightless Kamikaze Jerk Shads. This was the ticket and we started putting some good fish in the boat. Tyron took an early lead with a 1,4 kg catch and held it until day’s end, only to have Jason boat a two-kilogram bass, taking the big fish honours after Tyron’s line was broken by a giant. The ones that get away are what keeps us coming back. Tyron definitely accumulated the highest total of catches, and by the end of the day we had landed at least 40 fish, sealing off an epic day on the lake.

The week after this, Garth and I arrived at Inanda to pre-fish for the upcoming Inanda Bass Classic, only to find the Midlands Bassmasters lining up for a club day. They decided to let us fish as guests for the day, which we did. The fishing was not exactly straightforward due to a post-front bluebird day. We stuck with it and ended up landing some awesome fish. I top- scored with a bag of nine kilograms and second was snatched up by junior Protea angler Alistair Moores-Pitt with just over five kilograms. Since then, I have heard the fishing has become extremely tough, due to relentless heat and fishing pressure. This weekend all will be revealed as 150 boats line up to fish the Inanda Classic.

Albert Falls is still on the challenging side with most reports being of average catches. My prediction is that the fish will start reacting to anglers’ efforts when the weather stabilises after the second major cold front. Bass have an optimum-type system, so if water temperatures are too high for a particular time of year or too low, their feeding times and activity levels will be at a minimum. As soon as the water temperatures get to where the fish are expecting them to be in accordance with their biological needs, they will become active. Personally, I think a drop in water temperature is what they need to trigger their pre-winter instincts and get them eating.

Good news: the first bass fishing seminar in Pietermaritzburg will be held at the Fish Eagle in Victoria Road on May 27 at 6 pm. Speakers will include me, my partner Garth Liefeldt and the number-one ranked bass angler in the country, Martin de Kock. We will be sharing experiences, tips and tactics to make you a better, more conservation-minded angler. We intend to cover every corner of your tackle box and to help you to understand the decisions you are faced with on the lake.

Contact Brandon or Craig at the Fish Eagle at 033 345 4224 or thefisheagle@telkomsa.net to reserve your seat. There is no entry fee and food and drinks will be served. The store will also be open for purchases after the session. See you there.

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

Catch em’ up.

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