|Date of Report: Sunday, 2nd April 2017|
|Name: Roger Gurr
Phone: 082 464 6350
On the 11th of March six of us started the long journey to the Gamtoos River at three on Saturday morning. Wow, did we choose the wrong route through the inland areas of the Transkei into the Eastern Cape. We encountered many road stoppages due to road works (and a few blown tyres) and only arrived at our destination at 18,45 that evening, after nearly seventeen hours on the road. However, we were all in great spirits (a little later) and ready to start early the next morning to find out more about the river we had heard soo much about.
The Gamtoos is a big river, deep and wide from the mouth as far as about 12 kilometers up and still fishable much further up but that’s as far as we fished. The depth of the river varies between 8 meters and 1,5 meters as well as having some lovely shallows near the mouth where Grunter sometimes feed prolifically. My son and Chris’s Dad fished with plugs and lures and occasionally with Cracker shrimp whilst the rest us fly fished. We fished mainly near the mouth for Garrick, Shad and Grunter and from about a km above the Ferry Hotel to approximately 12 km above the hotel for Garrick and Kob.
Out of the six days we were there we had one day of strong winds and overcast weather where the fish went off the bite but over the remaining five days we had good fishing. We caught just on two hundred fish between the six of us. Most were small Garrick in the 30 to 35cm size with Marius, Chris, Justin and myself each landing a Garrick between sixty and sixty- five cm. Other fish caught were a few Grunter, Shad, Yellowfin Bream and one big Blacktail. All in all, a great weeks fishing on a beautiful river, as my son said, he’s never had soo many bites ever, fishing our rivers in KZN, so that tells you the story.
We rented a cottage from Claude Darlow, it’s in a little resort right near the river called Kingsway Resort. Anyone interested in fishing the river can contact Claude on 076-7659214, it sleeps four and costs R500 a day for the cottage. They have their own slipway and jetty and are very well organised.
We chose the normal route through the Transkei for the return trip to KZN and managed the trip back in eleven hours. Our fears of being stuck in the middle of Mtata in horrific traffic and getting our kit removed proved wrong. We had heard soo many stories of people having bad experiences there.
Back home here in KZN there hasn’t been much fishing. Peter Lehman finally managed to break the drought on Natal Wrasse catching three in two outings along the Peace Cottage area just north of Umhlanga Rocks. (not sure if he was fishing or checking out the nudist beach) so what’s next on the list Peter?.
The little news I have had from Durban Harbour is that it’s hot and cold, some days good and others nothing doing, but that’s fishing.
So, It’s back to reality for a while until we can break away again to some equally magic place where, the days are long, the fish are hungry and the flies work their magic!!!!
Till then, keep your flies wet.