Last Friday I made an impulsive decision to hit one of the large still water lakes near Cape Town to prospect for smallies. I left town at about 2 pm, allowing me just more than an hour’s fishing before heading home in order to make a dinner date with my missus. I normally use a fast action 5wt (Stealth Bomber) for this fishing, but on Friday I packed a Scott Tidal 7wt that I collected at the Post Office earlier that morning. I broke it its first day on the water while fishing for bluefish in New Jersey with Brent Flack-Davison in May (see Jersey Blues). After being repaired and sent back to me by the good people at Scott, I could finally break it out for it’s second session on the water.
Early season smallies is often a hit and miss affair, but I was confident that the high outside temperature would have a positive affect on the fish. Normally one can expect to catch a fish or two on a good winters day, but the number of bass that was landed on Friday afternoon clearly indicated that the smallmouth bass have entered their pre-spawn feeding frenzy.
I fished Meat Whistles on a 12 feet leader suspended under a strike indicator. I worked the dam’s inlet area, the same as I would fish the head of a large pool, and found that there were lots of fish stacked up in all the eddies of the inlet. What followed was an hour of explosive smallmouth fishing in the cool oxygenated fast water.
If you are looking to score some early season smallies, take note: the pre-spawn has commenced and the fishing should be hot August through early September.