Sunday, December 16, 2012

Summer Spearfishing Cape Vidal

Hein du Plessis good Spanish Mack off Leven Point - Cape Vidal
With all the rain on the KZN coast about the only place to go spearfishing at the moment is Cape Vidal.  Desperate to get our gills wet, we headed up the coast on Wednesday for a quick day trip to see if we could get some diving in.
Cape Vidal in December can be frustrating as it can be extremely quiet, the early spring shoals of 'return' Couta (these are Spanish Mackerel big and fat from feeding on the shoals of sardines down south during winter that go back to Mozambique during the summer)  and the Wahoo run have come and gone.
That is not so say you wont find the odd straggler or early shoal Couta , but generally the action only starts in mid January.

Never the less with no other diving going on we headed up and we were blessed with some nice clean water. As was expected the fish were quiet and we only managed to get one small Couta. Some other friends of mine also went up, but they stayed the night at Vidal and got on the sea early and Hein managed to get good Couta early on in the morning.
Apparently there were a few fish around early, which is typical of Leven Point. These early fish usually disappear once the sun is up and more boats arrive.

Tiger Shark off Deep Oscar at Cape Vidal

After a few hours of fishless drifts we headed out to the dep pinnacles at Deep Oscar. On my first drift even though the current was screaming I landed right above the bump. As I dived I saw a couta deep below me and swam down to intercept the fish. But when I levelled out at about 28m with the fish, I was joined by 3 Tiger Sharks, a Zambezi and a Grey Shark. If that was not enough there were a couple Potato Bass circling below just off the reef. It was like they were all going, "come on we dare you to shoot!"
For once I heeded my better judgment and did not take the shot, but situation I found my self in was absolutely awe inspiring. Sharks and other predators all congregating, almost like animals at a watering hole in a drought. So when I hit the surface the speargun was quickly swapped for a DSLR camera.

JP with a small Tiger Shark at Deep Oscar
We battled to get on the exact spot again, also diving with a large camera housing that resembles a potjie pot did not make it any easier. never the less we had some Tigers come up and follow us around for a while. One of the sharks was extremely large and fat, possibly one of the biggest Tigers I have ever seen. This big shark as obviously been around the block a few times and was a bit camera shy and was not keen to get too close.

Although we did not get many fish, it was a great day out and diving with all the sharks was rather cool. The water here at home is still brown and the rivers are still pumping so there is a good chance we will head back to Cape Vidal this next week again. Hopefully we can get lucky this time with some better fish.

Coatesman

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