After Ryan’s stunning fish and our lunch with the chief, we headed off. The roads in Lesotho are engineering feats worthy of comment. The steep contours of the upper valleys make it difficult for goats to get from A to B, forget a 4×4. The roads climb high above the valleys and hug cliffs and precipices that would make most normal drivers pale. And believe me when I saw they are not well kept.
The views however are unforgettable.
A few of hours later of slow driving and a couple of river crossings, we had found a cracking campsite in a stand of bush willows. We set up camp, strung hammocks and debated afternoon plans over a lunch of biltong – which was now running low.
I was sore; days of walking and hiking had left my feet buggered. I decided to take the afternoon off, shake off the jadedness and spend some time collecting thoughts in the journal. Rex headed down stream and Ryan headed up.
It was a good afternoon of recharging. I had also realised that down here there was no real privacy; there was always a curious Basotho watching you, hoping for a loosey or a sweet. But it comes with the territory of rural, third world exploration. I eventually took a short walk with rod in hand but only ended up feeling overwhelmed by the deep, slightly milky pools that lay between the shallow fishless runs. I blew it off and headed back, still feeling good after having the feet up earlier.
But all my relaxing was shot to shit when Rex arrived back sporting decent 3 rainbows for dinner, stories of a hatch and subsequent landing of several fish, including a couple of browns. I pretended to take solace in the fact that I had chosen the afternoon off and that they hadn’t been sight fished to. I was only kidding myself. Tomorrow was going to a big day.
Our plan was to walk downstream and fish the big water in hope of a lunker brown. But first it was dinner and night under the warm stars.