Mtamvuna River

Tom went fishing with Ryan – his first trip out of the house for ages! Ryan’s Dad Andy took them to The Old Pont on the Mtamvuna River, two hours south of home. I joined them for a lovely braai – chuck, wors and garlic bread. Tom and Ryan braai’d the meat to perfection, butContinue reading “Mtamvuna River”

Simes’ Cottage in Lotheni

There’s a lovely old sandstone farmhouse in the Lotheni Valley, one of the Drakensberg / uKhahlamba’s beautiful valleys. We had some great adventures with good friends and our kids up there. As an adult retreat it’s our idea of paradise: no electricity, no cellphone reception, no wifi. Peace. Plenty of hot water, a gas stoveContinue reading “Simes’ Cottage in Lotheni”

Blue Lagoon

Let’s go fishing Dad – at Blue Lagoon. Just till 7pm. As we were leaving the plaintive ‘flat battery’ cry of the Water Thick-knee (Dikkop) sounded from across the lagoon . . ~~~oo0oo~~~ again, thank you xeno-canto.org for bird sounds ~~~oo0oo~~~ A week later the fishing bug is still strong! This time Tom goes toContinue reading “Blue Lagoon”

Kelso Rocks

Go to bed early and be up early guys! That’s Tom, Ryan and Ziggy. They want to go fishing in Kelso on the rocks in front of Tom’s happy childhood haunt Happy Wanderers. So they get to bed at 2am and I have to roust them at 5:45am. C’mon, move! We drive off at 6:20amContinue reading “Kelso Rocks”

Albert Fell

‘Just two schoolboys and me,’ I told the lady at the entrance to Albert Falls dam recreation area. OK, two adults and one pensioner, she said, totting up the fee. And sizing us up at a glance, bitch. Oh well, she was spot-on – they are in matric after all. They were after bass andContinue reading “Albert Fell”

Bass Beware Again

The bass in Inanda Dam had not been unduly troubled by Tom and Ryan’s kayak-based onslaught some time ago. In Albert Falls Dam they also needn’t have worried. This time Tom and Ryan attacked them from the shore. But the bass were safe again. The old lake was called Peattie’s Lake. The dam wall wasContinue reading “Bass Beware Again”

Bass Straits and Dire Straits

Early Sunday morning I roust the lil bastids. C’mon, Up! Let’s go. Off to Inanda Dam where they’re going to slay the bass. Tom, Jose & Ryan. 45yrs of trouble on six legs and, according to them, fishermen of note. We hire two canoes from Msinsi and off they go. “See you in about twoContinue reading “Bass Straits and Dire Straits”

Our Fisherman Tom

The first time: He found a bamboo with a line tied on the end at Kelso beach when visiting the Harveys, Margaret and Bryce. This rustic contraption immediately sparked his interest. A fascination started that has endured. When Trish’s Dad Gompa Neil found out, he gave Tom two big surf rods as he had decidedContinue reading “Our Fisherman Tom”

Salt Rock Gap

Gail & Sean Robinson invited us along to join them and friends Len and Ann on their Salt Rock getaway. Brave souls! They probly thought “Let’s ask Pete, Jess and Tom”. They got Pete, Jess, Tom, Lungelo, Ryan and Andile!! Luckily the boys slotted in smoothly, eating, sleeping and fishing like Vaalies-by-die-see. And even gettingContinue reading “Salt Rock Gap”

Happy Wanderers. Again. Like Boy Scouts.

This time in winter. Tom loved it. Caught many small blacktail, karanteen, bronze bream, one shad and stayed on the rocks for hours. I had to fetch him and march him to the showers threatening not to feed him till he smelt civilised. Jess and friend Jordi lay in their tent and watched videos. CouldContinue reading “Happy Wanderers. Again. Like Boy Scouts.”

Fishermen’s Tales

Two avid fishermen, Lungelo and me went down to the sea. Or to the Umtamvuna River at The Old Pont. Lungelo and I were not the avid ones. That was Tommy and Ryan, passionate, persevering pêcheurs. Fishermen in blue.     Luxury accommodation on the banks of the Umtamvuna.   Besides the river fishing IContinue reading “Fishermen’s Tales”

Mkhuze Mantuma Camp

Jess and her two mates giggled away the weekend looking for big beasts. Elephants was what they were after, but they stayed in hiding. Eventually we were placing bets on seeing elephant poo! not even the whole animal! Still no luck. We saw lots of rhino and a a few buffalo instead. Plenty antelope andContinue reading “Mkhuze Mantuma Camp”

Hook, Line & Sinker

In  2008 we took ourselves up to Mabibi. Lovely snorkelling spot on the Zululand coast. Aitch had just finished her chemo and this is what she chose as her “what would you like to do now?” With best friends Jon & Dizzi. We luxuriated in the lodge and went for a daily snorkel in theContinue reading “Hook, Line & Sinker”

Cape Vidal Storm Disaster

We took the trailer and found a lovely campsite and settled in. Tom was a mad keen fisherman and Jess loved the waves. Blissful. Peaceful. Tom had his first real fishing rod – a huge surf rod given to him by Trish’s Dad Gompa Neil. Jess was mad keen on gymnastics and swimming back then.Continue reading “Cape Vidal Storm Disaster”