The early curtain peep after a late night revealed a Cape Town that looked like the colour had been drained from the air. It was bone-rattling cold and I struggled to find the spirit to drag myself through the shower and out into the fog. Leonard’s whatsapp telling me to ‘hurry up’ got me going.

The drive to Paarl was slow – it’s no good doing anything at speed when the visibility is close to zero. I was jealous of the dark windows I passed where no doubt people were wrapped up in warm beds. Bleh…

On arrival I found Len knee deep in wet grass next to a wide, chalk-stream-ish glide (bar the bums on the far side with their barrel fire and wine soaked banter!). Several big carp lazily fed in the shallows.

I won’t lie, I was quite impressed with both the size of the fish and the clarity of water they inhabited. Below the glide was a wide, shallow sand-bottomed pool that tested my casting and slow reactions of the morning.

Leonard, the carp whisperer, was soon into a really nice fish. It gave him a good run around before landing up in his net. The Squirmy Wormy proved exceptionally effective and resulted in both of Leonard’s fish. My issue with the Squirmy is that the tail that gives it so much life and movement is easily broken.

Later I lost a good fish and then Leonard took to a really well-conditioned fish at the top of the sandy pool.

Epic morning out!


Fred Davis

Fred Davis

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