What a festival! To use the words of my children, we had an awesome festival!
The guests arrived at Elgro River Lodge on Thursday evening and were greeted by the extremely helpful staff, everyone got their goody bags, rooms were sorted and soon Kobus Fourie got us all together for the official welcome and some exciting news related to the week-end.
Right from the start it promised to be the best festival yet, and the program reflected this. There was a twist this year, apart from all the other “social arrangements and entertainment” there was also a special prize for the angler who caught the most species during the festival.
Friday morning, after a great breakfast, everyone headed to the water with enthusiasm. There were seasoned veterans amongst us, but also a few people new to the sport, but it did not take long for the guides to sort everyone out. Some cloud cover was to be had in the morning, but it was nice and warm and it didn’t take long before people started picking up the fish.
One group we dropped of at a beat got multiple fish within minutes of being on the water!
Around midday the weather took a turn for the worst with a cold front followed by a thunderstorm chasing everyone off the water. That was it for the days fishing.
One group stuck it out on the Nuweplaas beat, but the fish were not willing to come to fly after that cold spell and bit of rain.
The evening, however, more than made up for it!
We were entertained at the barn with, again, some awesome food and light entertainment while we socialized and mostly lamented “the one that got away”.
After breakfast on Saturday it was clear that the flow of the river had gone up and after some early success people reported that the cold of the previous day and the rise in water caused the temperature of the water to drop.
It was a struggle to get fish, but the persistent fly-fisherman got his fish none the less. Later in the day there were reports of people doing very well, especially at De Wets with a few people there into double figures, one person even went way past twenty fish for the day!
At the prize giving the evening everyone was in high spirit, good fishing, good fellowship and very good all round catering.
Now it was time to crown the fly-fisherman who caught the most species during the festival. That honour went to Marius Rousseau, a Windknot member and guide at the festival.
He caught no less than four species! Two largemouth Yellowfish, a bunch of Smallmouth Yellowfish with a best of 3,2 kg, a few Muddies and a good sized Carp! All this in one morning of fishing! Truly an astounding achievement by anyone’s standards.
All the angles who receive this title at the festival from now on will have their names immortalised on a honours roll at the Elgro River Lodge with Marius being the first on that list of distinguished fly-fisherman. Congratulations!
For more photos, head on over to the gallery and look under the 2012 Elgro/Windknot Festival folder. I’ll update it on Monday.
Thanks goes out to every member and the staff at Elgro River Lodge who made this possible. What a memorable week-end! Awesome…