It’s Saturday and that means switchover day. It’s an exciting day for all of us here at Kau Tapen. Relief about last week’s success and excitement about what the new week will bring renders every Saturday special, plus our staff gets a bit of time off and the guides can wet their lines for a few hours themselves as well.
This week we were happy to welcome a lot of new faces. Jim and son Chris, Jeff, Gary and Rick from the US, who have been going on fishing trips in this constellation for over a decade. Dave and his two sons Aaron and Seth (also from the US), who brought their friend Aaron form Canada, and last but not least our friend Gerald from Austria, who came to visit us for his fifth time. A great bunch of anglers combined with great fishing conditions – pretty much our last week in a nutshell.
Other than any other past week of this season so far, this week has kicked off with a “bang”. The water level had been stable, air and water temperature hadn’t change a lot and most of the pools were holding a good number of fish. Already after the first morning session on Saturday, every rod had connected. Gerald, who had been with us for the last 4 years, kicked off his week with a perfect, fresh 17 lbs fish and Rick, who was just learning how to speycast would land a cracking 21 pound kype amongst others. The amount of double digit fish landed on that very first day was incredible and you could tell that the pressure was off for all group members already after the first two sessions.
Warm nights and cloudy days made for consistent conditions for the next couple of days, most importantly considering the water temperature. Similarly to the first day, fishing seemed easy, consistent and somewhat predictable, delivering more double digit fish for all rods, alongside a fresh 18-pounder for Chris, another nice 17 lbs fish for Gerald and yet another perfect 21 lbs fish for Rick, just a few meters above from where he had landed his first fish of equal size on day one. Aaron, who had just arrived on Tuesday morning and had never speycasted before would already hook into four fish during his first, shortened morning session. It was nice to see everyone being relaxed and happy already by midweek, especially as the water temperatures would drop significantly during the night to Wednesday.
The collapse of water temperature troubled the fishing immensely and Wednesday would mark our first day of tough conditions during this week. Nonetheless, Rick kept on bearing his “big fish karma”, landing a splendid 18-pounder on that evening. While the wind had changed from west to south, the air temperatures remained cold, even during the day, keeping the water fairly cold and stable, so that the fishing started to pick up again on Thursday morning. Jeff would land a fresh 17-pound fish and Seth a 19-pounder that day. Also Gerald kept performing consistently, managing to pull out a cracking 19-pounder that same evening.
Southerly wind kept pushing over cold air from the Antarctica. While air temperatures dropped down to freezing overnight, we measured only 7 degrees in the water the next morning. Bigger flies and slower retrieve were the key to success on this week’s final day. Although the fishing had slowed down and only very few fish showed activity during both, morning and evening session alike, the loud laughter and vivid conversations during Tapas Night showed us, that this week had been a full success for everyone.
From a guide’s point of view, you can’t wish for a better group of clients. Great attitude towards the whole experience, eager to learn and to listen and most importantly all about the good times. I personally dearly hope to see all of these great gents again along the way, whether it may be next year here at Kau Tapen (I truly hope so) or somewhere along the way in some other, far-away place on the water.
~ Paulo Hoffmann, Kau Tapen Fishing Guide