Monthly Spearfishing Report August 2005

Monthly Report – August 2005

Weather Wise

Although the days are getting longer, August is still a cold month here in KwaZulu Natal with plenty of cold fronts racing up from the Cape and the prospect of snow on the berg a reality. Expect some strong north east winds to blow to compensate for the big fronts in the Cape and you have a very changeable weather pattern. This makes for unpredictable sea conditions with August being a dicey month for diving in Natal.

Conditions and Fish

Some good days but generally a poor month for spearing. Clean water moved in on the lower south coast on the odd day, but despite this not many fish shot in these good conditions. The garrick seem to have gone quiet and the chance of a late cuda is very remote. The Bluff had some reasonable water but once again not much around if you are looking for quality fish. Deep Scottburgh producing some good bags and is probably one of the better options for a boat dive. For the guys who can spend a decent amount of time on the bottom in 80+ foot of water, there are some big black musselcracker about on deep cracker. The fishermen are still banging the shad up and down the coast but small sharks are a problem if live baits are used. Some good catches of daga salmon taken on the wrecks so these spots are always worth a look. Early season brusher very scarce but this could change any day. Lots of east coast rock lobster in berry so check your catch carefully.

Boating Rules

Lots more activity from the water police checking boats out at sea so make sure you have all the necessary safety gear. Most launch sites are insisting on a buoyancy certificate plus your skippers’ certificate before allowing you to launch. Some big changes ahead regarding paddle-ski’s if what I have heard is true. I remember the 5 nautical mile rule for single engine boats. This was on the cards for about 10 years before anything concrete was done about it.

Cape Vidal

This was the place to be with some real class fish about and reasonable conditions making for excellent spearfishing. Leven Point was cooking with some crocodile cuda and big wahoo keeping everyone’s interest on high alert. Most of the action was on the outside of the deep ledge with the wahoo making a regular appearance here but very sharp and hard to shoot. The big cuda were even more wary but the regular sightings made for exceptional spearfishing even though few were landed. Plenty of natal snoek or queen mackerel about but most spearos preferred to focus on the possibility of bigger fish in the deeper water. The odd sailfish taken but the point at Cape Vidal was working better for these fish where a number were shot during the month. Hardly any sharks with even the resident tiger sharks scarce. Plenty of rhino in the game park with nine sighted on the drive to town with some quick reversing done by a lone woman driver having to contend with a misbehaving baby rhino and concerned mother.

Transkei Coast

Good water off Hole-in-the-Wall and Coffee Bay where some spearos had good spearing. Brusher up to 10kg taken plus pignose grunter and spotted grunter. Shad still thick with the odd garrick about. September can be a good month for diving along this stretch of the coast with clean water a good possibility before the rains arrive.

Safe diving, John.