Craving some trout fishing, Neill was kind enough to put together another boys weekend to trout mecca known as Underberg. I put in for a full day’s leave on Friday (rather than the usual half day) in the hope of getting in a full day’s fishing. Sadly this was not to be as Neill got stuck with customers which temporarily delayed our departure. Add to this that my car’s fuel warning light had come on, and that Neill’s car had battled to start the previous morning, and it was clear we weren’t off to a great start.
As it turned out Andrew and Richard weren’t doing too much better, and we all arrived at Turner’s Cottage at around 11am. Being close to midday I wasn’t expecting much from the fishing, but it was great to finally be on the water. I started my assault close to the wall thinking the fish would be holding deep with the sun overhead. This proved to be unsuccessful and I eventually decided on a strategy change and kicked to the shallows at around 12pm. Strangely this seemed to be the answer and I landed 4 good fish within 10 casts, with 3 of them weighing in at over 2kgs.
From Turner’s Cottage we headed to our usual accommodation, Twin Springs, where we unpacked our bags and grabbed a quick bite to eat. We then climbed back into the cars and headed for Trelevans 2 for a short afternoon session. Fishing was tough but I managed to land a few small trout in my usual corner. Neill also got a few fish but sadly the Thompson brothers struggled. As I said, going was tough.
That evening we had a quick beer at the Himeville Arms before heading back to our cottage for the usual braai. Amazingly we managed to behave ourselves – well, more than usual – perhaps due to the looming committee meeting early the next morning.
The following morning Neill and I met up with Alan, Spurge, and the rest of the UHTFC committee at the Himeville Arms. It was a short, informal meeting over breakfast but was great to be involved. The food was good, the meeting was valuable, and the banter was lively. That said we didn’t hang around for too long as there was fishing to be done.
From the Himeville Arms we headed to Finelands where I was glad to see that the weed had died back over the winter months. In summer this water is often only fishable directly in front of the launch site, while we were lucky enough to have the entire dam available to us. Fishing was again tough with only a few small rainbows coming to hand amongst the 4 of us. The water quality was great and the temperatures were right, so perhaps we just had an off morning. Either that or the fish outfoxed us again.
After a quick lunch we decided to try an afternoon session at North End. Neill always sells this water as one of his favourites, while I’m yet to pluck a good fish from it. That said I do love it thanks mainly to the beautiful thatch lapa on the water’s edge. Again fishing was slow and we only produced 4 or 5 fish between us before being blown off the water by a strong westerly.
Up until this point it had been another great boys weekend, but sadly Andrew was still fish-less. We therefore spent the last evening enjoying a few beers around the fire and carefully deciding on our final water. Where could we go to ensure we all walked away from the weekend with at least one fish?
Alan shot to the rescue by offering us his dam for our final morning session. I walked up to the water’s edge upon arrival and was immediately amazed by the clarity. There was a pipe pumping water in close to the launch site and it was immediately obvious that the fish were enjoying the man made inlet. We were all set!
Neill was first into the water and picked up a lovely bow on just his second cast. Richard and I were close behind and had soon picked up a few fish of our own. Andrew however continued to struggle as the day rolled on. And then, just as we were readying ourselves to kick to the shore, Andrew connected with a fish. He played it skillfully for a few minutes before landing what was definitely the fish of the day.
With everyone smiling from ear to ear we called it a day, packed up the cars, and headed for home.