Where’s Summer?

Summer

It’s a common joke out on the river with clients, we look up at the sun drenched mountain landscapes, the bright profusion of flowers and perhaps an eagle in the sky or a klipspringer on the rocks and someone will say “nice office”.  It’s a bit of a giggle, because it is a nice office, taxing to reach perhaps but not in the same way as suffering the indignities of a two hour urban commute.

Reaching my office might require some tendon stretching hiking; you may end up with sore joints or bashed toes. But then to me at least it is preferable to cramp in your left leg from repetitive stamping on the clutch whilst edging your car through the clotted arteries of the early morning concrete jungle. The birdsong a more pleasant reveille than hours of mindless phone-in radio listening to some mumbling egotist request a song from Bing Crosby for his mother’s birthday.

There is however a flaw, the world is not perfect and the outdoors world suffers more than most from a lack of control, I have a nice office but the roof leaks and it has been leaking a great deal of late.

SummerfishingSummer fishing is supposed to be like this.

It is supposed to be summer, or at the very least it is supposed to be late spring. The winds should have swung to the south, the sun should be blazing out of an azure sky and we should all be worrying that the rivers are dropping at an alarming rate, hoping that the flows will maintain into the New Year.

But that isn’t what is going on at all, we keep getting inundated with late rains, sweeping cold fronts and temperatures that simply will not climb with any consistency. I have been out on the water already this season more than a few times in pouring rain and freezing cold. The streams have been pushing so strongly that wading has been a tricky, potentially dangerous, fraught with the risk of an unexpected and frigid swim. Rain jackets have been proven to be less than effective, clothing has become soaked and I have finally, after I must say a valiant struggle by my overtaxed immune system, succumbed to the flu. It isn’t supposed to be like this, it should be bright and warm, I should be at the drug store purchasing sunblock, not bloody pseudoephedrine HCL, I should be worrying about dehydration not consumption.

Summerfishing2Instead we have high water, frigid conditions, waders and rain jackets.

In short it is a flipping mess and turning into a costly one to boot, I have repeatedly had to cancel trips or at least reschedule them. One day we are casting micro caddis patterns at brightly coloured trout in gin clear water and the next battling Hurricane Hilda and praying that the sun might just peak out from behind the dark clouds for a minute or two to ward off imminent hypothermia.

It is all becoming a little tiresome; perhaps it is encouraging that the flows will still be strong later into the summer than usual. Prospects of better fishing should last well into the New Year, but right now my head is filled with cotton wool, I keep getting the shivers and my hands are shaking too much to replace the few micro caddis patterns that we have lost to trees on the good days out on the water.

Hot ToddyI am making these when I should be tying flies.

Just for the present, a comfy commute in a warm vehicle, albeit travelling at snail’s pace, is beginning to look more attractive than it should, it is probably the fever that’s doing it, but it is a worrying development none the less.

SummerWeatherThe forecasts are all a bit depressing.

A few more weeks of this and I could seriously consider a socially acceptable “proper job”, and ditch the fly rods for squash racquets, then the weather man can do his worst and I won’t have to worry.

Personally I blame the anglers up north; they have been suffering drought conditions and praying for rain, I need to have a word with them. When in contact with those deities responsible for precipitation I think that they need to be more specific, perhaps include GPS coordinates or something.  We have had enough rain down here in the south boys, more than enough.

Books available from the author of this blog from www.inkwaziflyfishing.co.za

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5 Responses to “Where’s Summer?”

  1. M Says:

    Keeping my fingers crossed for warmer days ahead and no leaky roofs 😉

  2. paracaddis Says:

    Me too M, thanks for the comment..

  3. Bernard Engle Says:

    My dear and damp friend. I say friend because tho we have not met we share a passion and a strong aversion to precipitation and incessant damp. At times like these, I like to think that it could be worse except where I stay (Ireland) I experience that worse scenario most every time I go out for a bout of rod brandishing, tree hooking, auto hooking, water thrashing (sometimes akin to synchronized swimming for 1) piscatorial mis/adventure. I have now reached a stage of acceptance, having briefly paused at denial, jaunt through anger and overnight camped at depression. I now console myself with the thought that angling was never going to be a dry sport.
    Reagards
    Bernard

  4. paracaddis Says:

    Nicely put Bernard, thank for the trouble of a comment.

  5. August 28th 2014 | The Cape Town Fly Fishing Report Says:

    […] I see that in 2013 I wrote about the prolonged poor weather well into the fishing season in “Where’s Summer” https://paracaddis.wordpress.com/2013/10/25/wheres-summer/ […]

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