Trip reports

Diamond River 2023, Week 3

26 Sep 2023 to
30 Sep 2023

On the flight back into Kimberley there was a brief moment when I thought I had seen snow! A huge front had pushed through the Cape, causing flooding and pushing bitterly cold air over almost the entire country. It did not feel like a great start to the trip with the guests arriving in only a few hours.

We met the guys at the gate and did a tour of the reserve, showing them some of the incredible history before heading down to the camp.

the first afternoon was bitterly cold, cloudy and raining at times but we had hatched a plan to target Largies in some deep pools to see if we could get the monkey off the back early. It wasnt long before Des had gone tight with the accompanying stressed tones and stern body language that indicated a Largie! it wasnt to be- he had hooked a muddy…. This was however followed by two beautiful Largies a short while later.

The guys were off to the racers and all was well despite the cold! The next morning we headed down to our lowest beat that produces fish in prodigious proportions. We arrived to a water level and flow that had doubled over night, to a point that it became treacherous to cross the river in the usually gentle rapids in the lower pastoral beats. We persisted and took a few nice yellows with some heavy flies.

The water continued to rise through the day and by the afternoon it had come up another 20cm. knowing the water in these conditions is critical to keeping the guys getting into fish. We had experienced these conditions in the past and they had actually triggered a massive feeding event from the Largies and we decided to focus on swinging small MSP’s through what were now fast flowing glides. This paid off with a number if Juvenile Largies and some big Smallies coming to hand. This style of fishing for yellows is super rewarding and man alive do they hit that fly hard!

An interesting week of fishing with some odd conditions but with some amazing people! The week ended with us belly crawling to get into position to get a shot at a big Largie sitting with 10 or more Smallies in a shallow run, feeding on Mudfish eggs that were spawning above them, an incredible sight to see! We unfortunately didnt get the fish as they spooked after a massive gust took the fly onto the bank and caused a massive splash. Great signs for the weeks to come!