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Monday, 23 May 2011

Boomy dam 2

Quote: For you and me today is all we have, tomorrow is a mirage that may never become a reality.
Louis L'Amour.

I used to enjoy reading Louis L'Amour's books. Not your normal run of the mill Western.

Went fishing at Boomy dam on Wednesday.

All set out and ready to pack into my old work horse. Amazing how much paraphernalia you need to catch a fish. 

The grove of pin oaks next to Boomy dam in all their autumn glory. Just the place for a relaxing picnic.

My float tube ready for boarding. I realised while I putting my fins on that I need to do some stretching exercises, my feet seemed further away from my hands than they were last year.

English oaks growing at the edge of the water. My fly-line can bee seen floating on the water, I was fishing the shallows and amongst the  grass, growing in the shallows.

It was a perfect day for fishing, not too hot or cold, and just enough breeze to put a riffle on the water. The ambient temperature was 11 degrees Celsius warming to 18 degrees. Water temperature was 4 degrees Celsius, about 39 degrees Fahrenheit. The only possible negative was that the barometric pressure was way down to just over 28 inches, which is strange for this time of the year, as there is usually a high pressure system over the country during the autumn and winter. There seems to much disagreement among the "experts" as to the effect low barometric pressure has on fishing. 

Well I fished every square inch of that dam. I fished deep I fished shallow. I tried fast retrieves, slow retrieves and static fishing. I tried everything but to no avail. Had one bump while I was daydreaming. Hope my winter trout fishing is not going to be as bad as my summer bass fishing.

The wiggle tail flies that Mark sent me from California are just lovely to watch in the water. If ever a fly had "life", it were these flies. Any trout that was in the slightest mood for eating, would have eaten these flies. I fished other flies but went back to the wiggle tails as they seemed to be the most visible in water that still had it's summer murkiness. I'm going to tie myself a few dozen of these.

Other than no fish the day was perfect. Floating on a float-tube must be the most relaxing way of fishing. Listened to the wind rattling the dry leaves of the trees, watching  the birds going about their business. Was particularly jealous of a King fisher's success in catching minnows. Watched an antelope grazing on the bank hardly a fly-line's length away, unaware that it was a potential enemy floating on the water.

Birds there were in droves, most of the smaller ones I could not identify. I identified blue cranes, a whole flock of them in the pasture next to the pond, a marabou stork hunting in the shallows, hadeda ibis's hunting for insects on the bank. There was a noisy bunch of Egyptian geese squabbling in the trees, flocks of Natal yellow billed ducks, also known as whistling ducks. landed and took off during the day. Cape vultures circled overhead. And a very small species of duck I'd never seen before that seemed very un-preturbed by my presence. Last a pair of cormorants who also seemed to be having more luck than me.

Later in the day I could hear the shotgun blasts of the duck and geese hunters on other dams in the area. Some people object to the hunting of these ducks and geese, but farming has created perfect conditions by building dams and planting enough fodder for geese to graze on. Egyptian geese have especially benefited and have become something of a pest, flattening whole fields of young maize and wheat. Egyptian geese are particularly good parents, with up to 80% of the brood surviving. So something has to be done to keep the numbers in check. South Africa is said to be something of a wing shooters paradise, with many species of birds that can be hunted in the winter months. 

Won't be fishing for a week or two. Will be visiting my brother in Pietermaritzburg next weekend and expecting a visitor the weekend after that. Soon it will be the three week school midwinter holiday and I'll try and get as much fishing done as possible.

Willow tree reflections.


Kay L. Davies said...

I want one of those float tubes! What wonderful fun!
That last photo is a real beauty, Phillip. I love it!
— K

Kay, Alberta, Canada
An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

John said...

It's nice that the wildlife cooperates when the fish don't.

Joyful said...

It looks and sounds like a perfect day.