Linecasters News - July 2011

Good day All,

The first half of 2011 is history and what a first half it has been!  Filled with action, different experiences and dramatic, unseasonal weather changes. Lately the weather hasn't seemed to follow its anticipated pattern and has often interrupted trips that have been planned well in advance. Fortunately the problematic pirate situation in the Seychelles has calmed down dramatically but port authorities are still reluctant to allow boats to sail further than 150km from Mahe, making the land based operations more sought-after venues. It is however great to report that fish are plentiful at the destinations that we have visited and more importantly that we always have a blast; after all it is a fishing holiday! Herewith a bit of a breakdown and report on Linecasters activities/trips during the first half of the year and a calendar for some trips that we are offering for the second half of 2011 as well as 2012.

Lesotho - Guided

We again had a number of successful Lesotho trips during 2011 except for the odd rain interrupted situation. Anglers landed world class Rainbow trout, some of which measured 20 - 24'' .  A few large, Smallmouth yellow fish were also sight fished to and hooked in shallow clear water, during the warmer months. Linecasters has invested in pack saddles that are designed to carry more equipment, making two to three night fly-camps into remote areas possible and more convenient.  For those that are up to a camp-out in the mountains, these trips are now on offer.  Please note that we have various Lesotho packages available on request. The Lesotho peak season is from September to November and from March to mid May each year.

Lesotho

Lesotho 2011 calendar

Dates available during spring/post spawning season 2011

Rhodes and surrounding waters

Rhodes and Barkly East area have had more than plenty of rain during Autumn (April / May) and numerous snowfalls already during the first part of winter (June).  The rivers are in good shape and hopefully, if we can keep unethical anglers off the spawning beds, we will have a good spawn. Although trout have been declared an alien species and therefore no seasons are set aside to protect the spawning, it is necessary for us fly fishing fanatics to respect the 'closed' season during June and July to ensure their survival.

Some associations (and individuals) are advocating an all year round open season and a 'catch and keep' policy for trout, but regretfully this attitude has seen the quality (size of trout) of the fishing in our area deteriorate drastically over the past 25 years.  There are simply not enough pan-sized and larger trout to make any 'wild trout' river in South Africa a sustainable food source. Trout need to grow naturally in a river system and live out their years, this way the larger, stronger and wiser fish can ensure that good genetics are kept in the system, thus ensuring trophy fish.  If trout are constantly being harvested indiscriminately from a river system and not left to grow to a large adult fish, the entire system in the river will eventually collapse.  Large trout protect their lies and often feed on smaller and weaker fish, in the process growing larger and constantly keeping the fish population in check.  If these large fish are constantly removed from the system then an over population of small fish will eventually over-run the system.  This in turn will cause a food shortage as these trout will zoom in on the same food source and soon cause an imbalance in the system.  Stunted, thin bodied trout with large heads and a poor colour are often the effect of over 'stocked' rivers. Have we still not learnt anything from the success stories across the globe!

This picture describes the fishing in our area as pretty bleak but all is not lost!  Some farmers are trying hard to stop the poaching of fish and the indiscriminate ruling of 'catch and keep' and there are still areas where fantastic fishing can be had.  If fish need to be culled from a system it needs to be done scientifically, with caution and by the correct people. Hopefully we will soon be able to join more hands to a common goal, that being, to ensure that the fishing in this unique area can once again become something in the 'world class' bracket.

We are happy to report that Brown Trout are now regularly caught among our Rainbow Trout on some stretches of the Bell River and Kloppershoekspruit. Linecasters guides are R.E.F.F.I.S. S.A. accredited (T.H.E.T.A. approved) guides and will be available to guide in and around Rhodes on request and will ensure that clients are taken to the best waters/beats. 1 - 3 Anglers per guide.

Linecasters Fly Shop in Rhodes

Our little fly shop in Rhodes remains a service that we provide to anglers that visit our area but unfortunately because we do not have a huge influx of anglers we don't keep the shop doors open at all times. There is however a phone number on the door and if ever you are in town and need to purchase some flies, tippets or other fly fishing paraphernalia, please feel free to give us a call and we will be there in no time to assist.  During long weekends and summer holidays we try and open the shop from 7:30 - 8:30 each morning before going out on the guided day.  During this time it is also possible to pop in for a chat or to purchase a day permit for one of our beats.

Cuba Adventures - Guide/Host

Linecasters hosted two trips (two different groups) to Cuba this year in May/June and can only describe the experience as incredible! The culture, people, country and fishing is really special and to have such an awesome group of guys on these trips was a privilege. During the first trip the anglers hooked Tarpon (up to 100lbs), many Bonefish, Jacks, Snapper, Barracuda... and during the second trip our group managed 3 Grand Slams and one Super Slam.   Congratulations to Bernard Futter who managed a Super Slam after hooking and landing a Permit, Bonefish, Tarpon and a Snook in one day.  This is an amazing achievement! We will be hosting two trips during the same period next year, 2012, at between 3890€ and 4590€ per person sharing.  Please contact us for early bookings to secure a spot, only 5 anglers per trip!

Cuba

Seychelles ~ Farquhar Adventure - Guide/Host

We will also be handling a back to back trip in Feb 2012 to the land-based Farquhar Lodge on the amazing Farquhar Island. With all the pirate scares around the outer islands of the Seychelles (such as Cosmoledo, St Josef, Astove..., traveling to many of these amazing fisheries has become impossible.  Only land based venues, further than 140km from Mahe, are negotiable via plane. We will be using the Farquhar Lodge as our base and from there fish the flats and drop-offs for amazing species such as GT'S, Bone fish, Parrot fish, Trigger fish, Jack's Dog tooth Tuna, Yellowfin Tuna, Grouper...! Farquhar is considered one of the best atolls to fish in the Seychelles.

These trips cater for 8 fishermen and 2 guides and are priced at 5350US$ per person sharing (ex Mahe) a hosted trip with 9 anglers will costs 4480US$ per person sharing (ex Mahe).

Seychelles~Farquhar 2012 Calendar

Seychelles ~ Live-a-board trips - Guided

November and December is a great time to target exciting off-shore species such as Sailfish, Marlin, Dogtooth Tuna and GT's in the Seychelles.  Often groups of 6 - 10 Sailfish can be seen behind the teasers and in full, luminous hunting colors. Double hook-ups are often achieved. This exciting sports fishing is combined with flats fishing around the smaller islands within 140km from the capital Mahe.  Bone fish and Permit among other shallow water dwellers are especially plentiful and we spend hours during the favorable tides hunting them on pristine, picturesque flats. Live-a-board on a motorized cat that can be maneuvered quickly and easily and with 2 tenders to transport anglers to and from the flats is the best way to maximize the fishing time in relative luxury.  A maximum of 4 anglers and 1 guide can be accommodated on a 6 day, 7 night expedition, fully catered. The cost of one of these tried and tested trips is R27 600.00 per person (ex Mahe).

Seychelles

Egypt ~ The Red Sea and Lake Nasser

Lake Nasser dams up the Nile River and is considered the largest water mass in Africa.  The sheer size of this water-mass sounds intimidating but the fact is that the dam forms thousands of bays and sweet spots around its edges where Giant Nile Perch can be stalked, ambushed and caught.  Tiger fish and dozens of other types of fish species are also on the menu but most sought-after are these fresh water perch that grow in excess of 300lb. The Red Sea is one of the fishing jewels of Africa and boasts a host of sport fish that can be targeted on fly and conventional tackle. Fish such as Giant Trevally (GT- up to 50kg), Dogtooth Tuna (up to 50kg+), King Mackerel, Large Boha Snapper, Bluefin King fish (up to 15kg), Sailfish, Rosy Job fish and more. 

Egypt

For July 2012 Linecasters have created an interesting combined trip to Lake Nasser and the Red Sea.

We will fly to Cairo overnight and arrive early the first morning.  After breakfast and a shower we will do the tourist thing and visit the pyramids.  Later that afternoon we will fly out to Aswan/Lake Nasser and overnight in a hotel.  Early the next morning we will board our boats and start exploring Lake Nasser with the mothership, our accommodation/kitchen following.  We will work our way south each day fishing for Giant Perch and Tigers for four and a half days.  Midday on the fifth fishing day we will leave Lake Nasser and travel 4 hours by car, across the desert, to the Red sea. We will then overnight in a resort at Marsa Alam , near the Marina, and board the boat the next morning.  For four and a half days we will explore the Red Sea with center console ski boats and the mothership following.  On the fifth Red Sea fishing day we will leave the boats after lunch and transfer to Marsa Alam Airport for the flight to Cairo. Later that evening we will take the connecting flight back to S.A.  From beginning to end (JHB -JHB) a 12 day action packed adventure. Exciting stuff, but we can only take 5 anglers and will possibly only do one trip a year.

Costs on request!

Angola for Giant Tarpon and massive Jack Crevalle - Guided

Angola remains one of our destinations of choice for catching Giant Tarpon of 200lb+ as well as huge, strong Jack Crevalle (Yellowfin Kingfish) of 20 - 60lbs.  Many fly rodders have traveled to Angola without proper guidance and have returned unsatisfied and empty handed.  We do not guarantee big Tarpon on fly every day but we will set you up with the best chance to hook and land one or more of these monsters as we have fished and learnt from these waters over several years.  Its not always easy fishing and one needs to work hard at casting a 11 - 12 weight all day but it will be one of the most rewarding happenings of your fly fishing career if you subdue one of these beautiful creatures.  Pods of large Jack Crevalle are often found hunting near the surface and we have successfully sight fished and landed numerous beauties of 30 - 50lbs on fly.  This in itself is an amazing experience and anglers tussle these fish for 20 - 40 minutes before they reluctantly come to the boat. Fishing is done within view of the shoreline and the sea is generally calm.  We use 20' - 24' foot ski-boats with two anglers per boat. The accommodation is land-based at the Kwanza River Lodge and the food and rooms are of good quality.

Angola

Dates:

2011 Linecasters Beginners and Advanced Academy - Rhodes

The Linecasters Beginners and Advanced Academies will be in the September/October school holiday this year.  The academies will be hosted by Fred Steynberg and Dr. Mario du Preez and the venue will be in the village of Rhodes.  Couples, singles and children (over the age of 12) are welcome.

Dates:

For more information on guiding, trips and academies please contact Fred: fred@linecasters.co.za or cell +27 (0) 826402930 or office +27 (0) 459749298.