Did you know South Africa’s Vaal River has an excellent reputation for Fly Fishing? So grab your rigs, waders, polarized specs and your best fish-fooling flies and head to the Vaal for some fast flowing action. The Vaal River makes a fun, exciting and easily accessible fly fishing adventure for all!
The 1120km long mighty Vaal River cuts its way across South Africa from east to west and is one of the country’s most important waterways. Beginning in Mpumalanga at Klipkapstel it joins the Orange River near the Northern Cape town of Douglas and, at Alexander Bay, the combined waters of the Vaal and Orange flow into the Atlantic Ocean.
The Vaal River is virtually a stone’s throw away for residents from Gauteng and the Free State and makes an ideal destination for a day trip, weekend jaunt or school holiday vacation, not only for fly fishing but for a host of other great activities including white water rafting, kayaking, and even hot air ballooning!
The Middle Vaal and the Vaal around Parys are exceptional fly fishing areas offering an exciting challenge for novice to experienced anglers. Fishing in this part of South Africa is an absolute pleasure with unspoiled natural bush and a diverse range of plants, animals and birds including the fish eagle to admire…between reeling in the big ones of course!
Choose a location somewhere between the Barrage Reservoir wall 20km north east of Parys near Vanderbijlpark to the Vredefort Dome 30km south west of Parys and the chances of one of the Vaal’s freshwater beauties taking your fly is more than high. The specialty in these parts is the prized yellowfish, one of the most sought after freshwater predator fish in South Africa! The smallmouth yellow reaches around 3.6kg/8lbs and, for the more experienced angler, the powerful largemouth yellowfish provides a thrilling fly fishing quest weighing in at up to 9kg/20lbs. If the yellowfish are not striking, then there are also mudfish, sharptooth catfish and carp to keep you busy.
The Vaal Dam in the Upper Vaal region 1.5 hours drive south of Johannesburg, also offers good spots for both conventional and fly fishing as well as a multitude of other adventure activities like canoeing, kayaking, jet skiing and house boating.
So, fine-tune your casting for your next fly fishing adventure on the amazing Vaal River, a great opportunity to get those Boots wet!