Good fishing to be had on all the dams in the Umgeni system

2012-01-28 00:00

THE 2012 BETT season officially kicks off almost at exactly the same time you are reading this.

Inanda is the venue for the first event and contestants seem to be more motivated than before for the season to come.

I pre-fished Inanda last weekend, my only practice day, and the fishing, contrary to public opinion, was rather entertaining.

Andrew and I by no means loaded up on big fish, but we enjoyed a constant morning bite from average to decent-sized keepers.

The dam is in great condition despite higher than normal water temperatures, with magnitudes of bait fish to be seen in the shallower water. The morning bites are coming mostly on fast-moving top-water baits and jerk baits. When the sun gets up a bit, you can see good-sized fish laying in the shade of the trees along the banks.

These fish are definitely not easy to catch, but if you can ascertain where you think one may be hiding, you need to back your boat off quite a way and make long accurate presentations.

With the water being so clean in some areas, the fish can see you long before you think they can and tend to disappear in a hurry.

By keeping your distance and making longer casts, you are obviously decreasing your chances of spooking the fish and getting them to react before they feel intimidated. Midmar has also been a topic of conversation lately with stories of decent fishing being told.

The resident vegetation has exploded with the summer temperatures and high water levels, resulting in some awesome habitat for the predatory bass.

Apparently, there is also no shortage of bait fish and this, coupled with the cover, has put the bass on the prowl. I have not had a chance to get there recently, but will definitely be checking it out as soon as I get a gap.

I had my hair cut last week, and although this is of absolutely no importance to you, the dude cutting my hair, Malcolm Smith, kept my ears flapping with all his recent bassing tales from Albert Falls and Nagle Dam.

I also have not been to Nagle for longer than a while, but after hearing Smith’s stories of great fishing, I am going to have to go.

It’s not the quantity , but the average size of the fish that attracts me. Malcolm said two-kilogram fish are common and a few fish close to the three-kilogram mark have even found their way to the boat.

It seems that these venues, along with Alberts, which is still producing some reasonable action, are all providing good sport.

High water levels and bait fish to boot seem to be the recipe for some great summer fun. Aqua Academy Skipper Training would like to remind all skippers to check their COF forms before leaving for the dam. If you need your registration renewed, please contact them on 033 386 7293 or info@aqua­academy.co.za

I will report back on the happenings of the first BETT event at Inanda this weekend in my next column, so until then get out on the lake 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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