About the Fishing

about_pic_01At Groenkloof, the Vaal River tells a story in every bend. There is such variation in the watercourse that a variety of tactics are the order of the day, ranging from mono and czech nymphing to a more technical approach like upstream dry or dropper fishing. With a bit of insight and reasonable skill, you may well find yourself making the catch of the day.

Oom Gert Visser, who lived on the farm until a few years ago, had a pole outside his house where he marked the size of all the fish he had ever caught - the biggest was 78cm!

Although we at ON THE FLYhave mainly been focusing on the small mouths, of which 3kg+ fish come to the net regularly, I am sure that there are still some of those monster large mouth yellows of Oom Gert’s for the taking.

The river section on the Groenkloof, being under the Vaal Dam, Bloemhof Dam and the Vaalharts weir, has a predictable flow, and is clear most of the year. By clear, I mean that sight fishing really is at the order of the day.

Although the accomplished fly fisherman would probably focus on the more technical parts of the concession, there is a lot of water that allows for the novice, perhaps with a bit of tutoring to get into fish quite quickly. If we have a client who has never fly fished in his life, this is where we take him. These sections also allow for easy wading, which helps when teaching the younger generation. Within half a day, we could teach a 8 year old to not just get his first fish on fly - but to match his bag with his age. We would bet your largest fish on it!

An end note: Fishing, for us, is strictly catch and release – it’s about the experience. When teaching newcomers, a lot of emphasis is placed on the humane handling of fish to be released. We maintain the ultimate respect for the river, its pristine surroundings and its wily inhabitants.

The Camp

Groenkloof's camp was designed with absolute minimal impact on the environment in mind. Added to this was the idea to offer our clients a "real' bush experience, but not devoid from the comforts that might take away from it.  With 800 ha and 7 km of private river frontage, we were spoiled for choice, and eventually settled on an area known as "die Hoek". The area have lots of big trees and is right on the river’s edge, and with lessons learned during January's high water levels, we could plan our camp in such a way that future high water levels would have a very small impact.  

Clients are housed in comfortable individual 3 man tents with air mattresses, a crate that doubles as a bedside table and storage space and still leaves enough space for travelling bags. There is also a big communal tent that can be used for gear storage and a lounge when the weather does not play ball. A hot water shower and flush toilet, both with views over the river completes some of the basic comforts you do not have to be without.  

The main focus was placed on the dining area, where most of your non fishing time will be spent. Under the trees a table with white crockery and silver cutlery is set around the camp fire where you can enjoy the fruit of our other passion - bush cooking! All the food is prepared on the fire, even the bread is baked daily in camp. The dining experience we aim to offer our clients is not seen as secondary to the fishing experience, and a lot of emphasis is placed on high quality and interesting cuisine. This is where friendships are forged under star lit skies, and the cry of a jackal the only music you will hear!

Your base in the Northern Cape. 

Another reason for selecting Groenkloof as our base camp is the procsimity to some of the best fishing waters in the Northern Cape. Warrenton is within an hour’s drive from great destinations like Taung dam. This is a fishery that is very undiscovered and can be compared to Sterkfontein dam, except that you will mostly find yourself with only one or two groups sharing this amazing place with you. A little bit further, just past Kimberley you will find the Vaal river confluence with first the Riet River, and then the mighty Orange River.  

We have secured access to other private and public waters, and if you look under the packages section, we are confident that you would find one that satisfies the traveller in you. If not, let us know and we would package a trip that will suit your needs.




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