It's all about Trout - the TOPS Corporate Challenge Leg 2
The weather really played ball this last weekend, which always bodes well on the fishing front. Although if you had to ask a fussy angler, he would say that it was a little too calm for the Trout. The water was, for many hours like glass, wanting for an ever so gentle breeze, but I'd fish in those conditions every day of the week through a crisp Winter.
Rhuan Himan - WildFly Media and Marketing Manager - with a fine winter trout
And fish the entrants certainly did! Commendably, every team made the effort to get onto the water in each session and despite the crystal clear waters making any movement apparent to the suspicious Trout, a good few specimens were obliging.
Anton Martyn of Team "Zulu Waters"
494 Rainbow Trout were landed over the 2nd Leg of the TOPS Corporate Challenge, with two Brown Trout also being recorded, rounding it off to an average of 8 fish per angler. Patterns that were producing the goods varied, but a double rig combination of a bright attractor followed by a smaller imitative fly seemed a common denominator. The infamous Blob and flash back was evident on many an anglers rig. That said, you had to be prepared to change your tactics as the sessions progressed.
A lightening fast strip early morning on a minnow or varied streamers (predominantly white) certainly did the trick, But when I say quick retrieve, I'm talking double handed GT style…..the bow waves behind the fly will have you gibbering. Then as the sun got up, you had to resort to deep and very slow hand twists, using a small damsel or another suitable nymph pattern, just playing with it on the bottom. A bloodworm would got be remiss in such a situation. Few anglers resorted to the dry, but the perfect water conditions did cry out for one!
Local knowledge counts - Sven Turner on the board...
The larger average fish are still in hiding, but still, two fish of 60cm earned the joint largest Rainbows of the weekend. George Hattingh was first to record his, out of Oakbrook dam, closely followed by the young Warwick Albertyne, who on debut, for his 18th Birthday, opened his scorecard with a 60cm from Lochwood followed by a 52cm moments later, an achievement that earned him the Biggest Fish prize of the tournament so far.
Best angler was awarded to Frans Brewis, catching in every session at an average of 43cm. Although Gavin Loveday on 32 fish and Sven Tuner on 33 Trout need a special mention for their individual angling prowess.
The five qualifying teams in order were -: Earls of Warwick, White Wooly Buggers, The Independent Crew, Zulu Waters and 2nd Leg winners Team WBHO
Earls of Warwick
TCC Leg 2 Winners - WBHO
The #partycomrade awards yet again dominated proceedings with the tongue in cheek nominations like the Barbara Woodhouse trophy keeping all entertained….needless to say the party ensued to the wee hours of Sunday morning.
The Gupta's - Split Cane
#PartyComrade of the 1st order - Colin Taylor
Monica Lewinsky - Getting the "JOB" done - Mike Nelson
Most of the dams are surprisingly full, not having felt the effects of the drought so far and water temperatures are hovering around that 12 degree Celsius mark. Despite the solid returns, some waters have yet to fire, so expect the 3rd leg of the TOPS Corporate Challenge to yield some surprising results!