Monday, 18 July 2011

Sodwana Bay is NOT a shore fisherman's dream.

Fishermen take note! Sodwana Bay is OVER-RATED. It is, however, important to differentiate between shore-angling and offshore angling. 

My family and I, all keen fishermen, spent the last two weeks at Sodwana in the iSimangaliso Wetland Park. From the outset the weather proved difficult. The water temp. of 20 degrees didn't help too much; neither did the easterly wind. Offshore fishing was satisfactory. Admittedly fishing in the winter has its challenges. Nevertheless we did land a 125kg Blacktip reef shark and some decent couta [King Mackerel]; all on live-bait. Bonita were plentiful and we missed a sailfish or two on the rapalas. Other boats landed a few Yellowfin Tuna and some decent Wahoo. Incidentally couta are, in my opinion, the finest eating fish in the world. Marlin are generally absent at this time of the year. Quite rightly then, Sodwana is considered a world-class offshore angling destination. Shore or surf-angling off its beaches is another story entirely!

In years gone by it wasn't a rarity to catch large kingfish in the bay from off the beach. Sight-casting to feeding  GTs with a popper or drop-shot, on light-tackle is fishing second to none! Fishing at night is usually the only way to fish the Zululand waters. Sliding for large inedibles ie: skates and sharks is still possible in the bay at night given the correct conditions and before the boats launch at dawn. One or two smaller kingfish are still taken. At any other time [ie: when the first sunrays hit the water until sunset] the fishing is dreadful. No amount of scratching with either bait or plastic in and around the bay or further south off the ledges yields even a single bite. Small kingfish and wave-runners are entirely absent. Bonefish are non-existent. We did land over the course of two weeks one or two undersized shad on small spoons north of the bay. 

Fishing improves 20kms further up the coast and down south near Cape Vidal. Anybody who tells you that fishing from the shore in and around Sodwana is anything more than rubbish probably hasn't been there for a while.

No comments:

Post a Comment