‘Hunting Trout’ by Dr. Tom Sutcliffe.

An extract from ‘Hunting Trout’ by Dr. Tom Sutcliffe.

Just on the point of mastering the cast, Mark Yelland and Fred Steynberg deserve more that the passing nod I just gave them.  They are ‘extreme casters’, meaning they can operate at long range and under most conditions, as well as you do close in – by that I mean without losing a hair’s breadth of accuracy or loop control.  They are smooth casters also, almost Teflon-coated casters.  I happen to know both of them well I’ve fished with them often enough to feel pretty confident that you won’t come across anyone much better anywhere in the world.  And when Yelland’s not listening I stick my tongue in my cheek and tell the folks I taught him how to fish up at Inhluzane in the eighties, because there’s perhaps just enough of a thread of truth in it to pass as believable (we fished together up there for a few years when Mark was reasonably new to the sport), and it makes a good story.  But if I taught him anything I doubt it was much more than when to be up there and when to go home.

As for Steynberg, well, fishing with him is just one of life’s rare privileges, because technically he’s the most awesome fishing talent I’ve ever come across, and one of the most likeable young people you’ll ever meet.  He quietly showed me in New Zealand what I still have left to learn, which was valuable, but at the same time a bit uncomfortable.  (Actually, thinking about it carefully, someone needs to take him outside and shoot him at forty paces to save the rest of us any further embarrassment.)

Tom Sutcliffe with a nice rainbow