MCC – Yellowfish Season 2023/24



The 2023/2024 Lesotho yellowfish season is in full swing at the MCC (Makhangoa Community Camp), and our initial groups have experienced exceptional fishing sessions.

Exciting start at the MCC

The season commenced with a bang as our first guests encountered plentiful fish and optimal water levels. The yellowfish displayed remarkable enthusiasm for taking dry flies, particularly on warm, sunny days. Notably, we’ve proudly welcomed four individuals into the esteemed 60cm club already this season. The preferred flies have been the balbyter (a Lesotho classic), natural CDC shuttlecocks, parachute hoppers, and black klinkhammers.

We’ve successfully caught fish even as far as Lammergeier, approximately 8km upstream of the camp. However, the greatest concentrations of fish have been found approximately 4km upriver of the camp, near the dam. Most of our dry fly fishing endeavors have occurred in the mornings when the sun begins to warm the water.

Challenges and Opportunities Amidst Changing River Conditions

Following a brief period with no rain, the river’s water level decreased rapidly, resulting in shallower waters, fewer fish, and a need for more technical fishing approaches. Many fish were caught using #18 CDC shuttlecocks and 7x tippet. Nonetheless, our success persisted until the first significant rise of the season, which turned the river brown and caused most fish to retreat back into the dam.

While we managed to capture some yellowfish at the dam’s inlet, the trout exhibited a fondness for the cold water originating from the higher parts of the catchment area. Consequently, they were caught in substantial numbers where the river converges into the dam. Although most trout were small, we did land a few larger fish using dry flies and streamers.

Adapting to Weather Variations

Intermittent rain has led to frequent fluctuations in the river’s water level, offering only limited windows for fishing. During these times, the favored method has been a dry dropper rig, as yellowfish seem more inclined to take a nymph in colder water. Interestingly, when the river cleared up, the fish migrated from the pools to the faster pocket water.

The dam’s water level is rising steadily each day, and we anticipate the river to be in optimal condition upon our return from the Christmas break, teeming with eager yellowfish.

Click here if you would like to join us in 2024 for a yellowfish experience of a lifetime!

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