Flyfishing report: Trout - Winterberg & Stormberg

Date of Report: Friday, 7th January 2022
Name: Martin Davies
Email: flyfishdavies@gmail.com
Phone: 082 398 1088 or 046 622 4423

Winterberg

After being down to 30ha just 6 weeks ago the mighty Thrift Dam is now full and overflowing at 180ha or more. The water stretches several km above the causeway at the top end with the Swart Kei still flowing strongly at the inflow. This is the first time in about 10 years that the country’s largest trout dam has reached the full mark. Needless to say there has been an explosion of growth of aquatic life forms as all the nutrients in the newly water covered area are released. Apparently the fish are gorging themseves on tadpoles and snails so expect some great autumn/winter fishing. Fortunately there is a good head of fish in the dam in the 350g to 900g class to take advantage of this bounty and Martin is holding back about 3 to 4 thousand fingerlings for a stocking from his Grahamstown hatchery later in the year.

Good news also from Redcliffe where all the dams are overflowing, especially Delton, the trophy dam, which was well down prior to this.

Stormberg (Queenstown area)

QFFC chairman Reg Morgan (082 7033489) reports that all their club dams are full to overflowing. They have stocked 10 000 fingerlings in each of the two new Steynsburg dams and will stock their other dams with both rainbow and brown fingerlings later this year, possibly in March. The club dams will be closed for fishing from Jan 15 to the end of February in what is the hottest time of the year. Even so, it has been a remarkably cool summer so far due to all the cloud cover and rain.

The club’s website is at www.qffc.co.za.

Also in the Stormberg area the renowned Highland Lodge waters have lived up to their reputation of being one of the top trophy destinations in the country with some very excellent catches over the last few months. These dams which benefitted from good rains last summer are brim full after the recent copious rains. As is customary for this resort the waters are now closed until March.

Somerset East

Alan Hobson of the Angler& Antelope reports that there has been a dramatic change in water levels of the local trout dams after several years of serious drought. The famous Mountain Dam is the fullest he has seen it since he arrived in Somerset East 19 years ago. That means the waterfall on the Naude’s River and the stream itself is flowing strongly, the nearby Charlton dams are overflowing and of course the Glen Avon dams are full but a bit murky after all the rain. What is unusual is that like other reports from the Eastern Cape the summer has been unusually cool so far, so trout fishing has continued into January. Normally there is a switch to bass yellows and catfish by now and no doubt this activity will commence in a few weeks when temperatures rise again. So, the good news is that the trout fishing is secure for the next couple of years and restocking can be safely done this autumn.

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Evening on Mountain Dam – photo by Alan Hobson