A weekend with Boeps

A trip away with family and friends to Mgwalana in the old Ciskei

With temperatures falling over most of the country and with the sea being wild and nasty for nearly a month we decided to head out to Mgwalana just to get away from the hustle and bustle and go fishing for a weekend away. With all the madness and strife that was taking place in our beautiful country we needed to find solace and be at one with Mother nature. However upon looking at the water, Saturday was a pearler of a day to fish the lagoon, or what’s left of it.

After a late start to the day, myself, Byron and George took a stroll down to the river with our arsenal of light sticks and gear in search of whatever would be on the bite. Using sand prawn, commonly known as pink or cracker prawn we began our quest to see what was on the bite. The bite was on the slow side but managed to catch a Natal stump of 55cm , and a few grunter which were safely released, however to our surprise we also managed to catch 3 freakish sand eels on sardine strip.

Come Sunday conditions looked perfect and we headed off with heavier tackle to target bigger species off the beach. Armed with my Saragoza 10 000 and  my new Kyasuto Hearty Rise rod and taking fresh squid (chokka) and sardines we took off into the surf. On my first cast using clean squid I got totally flattened, either by a steenbras (pignose grunter) or hound shark, unfortunately after peeling off over 20 meters of braid and with heavy head shakes the hook pulled and the fish swam off to fight another day.

Changing my rig by using a dingle dangle and a Mustad 6/0 tuna circle with clean squid as bait, I sent the lead over the bank, and within minutes I went on and landed my first juvenile pignose grunter of 58cm that was quickly released back into the ocean. After the release of the piggie, the action intensified, and the fun started, as we were able to land descent size shad (blue fish, commonly known as Elf in the Cape) as well as sandies, smooth and spotted hounds as well as juvenile bronze whalers, the interesting scenario was that nearly every cast was a bite and a fish.

Being a conservationist I kept to my bag limit of 4 shad per person per day, and these fish were brought home and  deep fried in a batter mix and served with a fresh green salad. To the readers out there please remember, keep our beaches clean and the plastics out of our ocean. Limit your catch, don’t catch your limit.

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