Category Archives: Boats

Wreck at Umhlanga

Woke up at 4 this morning to have a look at the sea. It looked great for some fishingski fishing. The swell was not bad and the wind was a light breeze. So I got myself together kissed the wife goodbye and headed for the garage to get my tackle and fishing ski ready. I had still not put reals on my rods and lures on the line. Lucky it is all rather sorted so I got that done in record speed. Off I headed down to the sea, which is a short walk from the flat.

I was feeling a bit nervous when I saw the sea as the waves always look different when you see them from the beach. Especially when you are looking at back line. The gaps where there but there is always the concern that you will be in the wrong place at the right time. I took my time on the beach and timed it just right to do a perfect entry into the surf. A nice push over the shore dump and ride the boat then jump on and paddle a bit. Then it was time to negotiate the back line.

I managed to go over a few small foamies, but then could see a big wave building up and I was in the wrong place. I know that you need to be moving forward if you want to get over a wave without it throwing you off. Well that is my theory. So the wave broke in front of me and I had no choice but to commit to going full steam ahead. It must have looked rather cool from the beach but I when up and over with some air time. Once a landed I saw that it was open but I was not out of the back line. With a few power strokes of my paddle I managed to get out beyond the back line. Then it was time to get the rods out and a few lures attached. I then did a troll up to the lighthouse as there are some rocks out there and I have caught some fish there before. It was just on 5 in the morning and the sun had not come up yet. The water was not very clean and I had no bites so I decided I would head out to the wreck. I saw a skiboat go out early but I could not not see it at the wreck. So I assume it was the sharks board boat.

I have a hand held GPS with the wrecks cords in, so off I go. It is little more then a km out to sea so it takes a while to get there. Once I get there I attach my yozuri trace up and drop it down. As it hits the bottom I feel the bites. So up it comes and I have a full house of massbunkers. Great stuff I put them in my hatch and rig up one on my live bait rig. I let the live bait out and put my rod in the rod holder. I do a few more yozuri sessions but don’t hit the mother load. I catch a pinkie and some other kind of fish which I let go.

Next thing my live bait rod starts moving. Solid and steady. So I grab it and it feels very heavy. The time is now 6:00. I was alone when I arrived but just before my livebait got taken another guy in a fishingski arrives. We exchange pleasantries and fill each other in on what is happening, nice to feel that you have company when you are bobbing in the ocean. So anyway back to the fishing. The fish is solid and stays deep. It feels big what ever it is. I am starting to think shark. After a while I manage to get it up near the top, but not enough to see what it is. It then takes off back into the deep. I do this a few more times and it pulls down to the deep a few more times. All the while I am being pulled further out to sea. I manage to get it closer as I can see my leader and the time is now 6:30 and I need to get back before 7:00 so I am panicking  I hold on hard and know this is going to be make or break. Well break it is! We are both free of each other. I do feel a bit sad as I would have liked to see what it was. It is then time to head home. Takes a while but I end up back at back line. Pack all the rods away batten down the hatches, fasten my life jacked. Then I wait for a wave to catch to get me to the mid zone. It goes well and I have no problems. I can see there is a rather big shore dump and a step right in the surf zone. What that means if I get off to soon I will be in deep water and unable to get up the beach. In other words a good dumping. I wait for a wave to go over and then paddle like crazy on the back of it. I do a perfect dismount grab my boat and run up the beach. This does not happen often so I am all smiles.

I am looking forward to going out again soon. Lets hope the world does not end tomorrow.

Hey Joe a boat has flipped

I was recently at Sodwana and it just so happened that there was a fishing comp on that week. So on Monday morning we hit the beach early with My Father in-law Joe to check out the boats launching. The kids played around in the small waves so that I could keep an eye on them while we watched the spectacle.

 

It is very impressive to see such huge boats being launched straight into the sea. It comes with some drama tractors getting stuck in the soft sand in the surf zone then other tractors pulling them out. There is a lot to see as boat after boat gets launched and does a few turns in the safe zone. Then they time the gap and race out punching a few waves until they are beyond the breakers to start a days fishing for the big one.

 

My father in law is snapping pictures like crazy. Next thing I see a boat upside down in the surf zone. I shout to mt father in law, “Hey Joy a boat has flipped”. It was gut wrenching for me. I have never been in a boat flip before but I have been flipped in my fishingski many times. Also once in Cape town when the dungeons surfing comp was on. But that is another story.

 

The launching stops and I think there might be a rescue boat. Nothing! Lucky the guys all have life jackets on and they float back to shore. The boat does not do the same thing. It floats down the coast a bit and then does not go in or out. I think it had to do with the fly bridge keeping it in one place. The launching continues and nothing further happens. A few people have gathered on the shore waiting for the boat to come closer. They try and swim out to it but with life jackets on they just can’t get through the surf zone.

 

I mention to my father in law that I am going to see if I can help. I have borrowed a small plastic boat to have some fun in the waves. I am thinking that I can paddle a rope out and tie it onto the boat. Paddle back an they can then pull the boat back. I speak to the guys and they say that will be great. I get the boat and put a life jacket on. I tie the rope onto the back of the plastic kayak. I then start paddling out. The rope is too short and the guys are holding onto it. I am in the surf zone and being stopped so I think I am going to get flipped. Lucky the guys let go and I punch through to waves and come close to the boat.

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It is a very eerie feeling seeing a boat upside down in the see. The water is clean so I can see that the fly bridge is touching the ground. I also take my time as I want to make sure things are ok before I do anything. I jump off the plastic kayak and untie the rope and attach it to the front of the boat. This was a bit of a challenge as I was also holding onto the kayak. A big wave came over and flipped the kayak so I was dealing with that also. I took my time and in the end had the rope on and was back on the kayak. At first I thought I would feed the rope through a loop on the kayak until I got to the other end of it. That did not work and the first wave snapped the loop. I then paddled until I found the end of the rope. I then wrapped that around the paddle. I did not tie it on just in case I had to let go. In the white water the rope went very taught and I bailed from the kayak. In that moment as the wave washed over me it also took off the life jacket. Lucky I could stand and a few more waves washed over me and I was pulled with massive force, it took all my might to hold on. Lucky my kayak fishing experience had taught me a few tricks and I braced myself for the waves by keeping my arms close to my body and using them as a spring. Then it felt like the rope had snapped as there was no more tension. I was now much closer and a guy had managed to swim out and he took hold of the rope and started pulling. The rope had not snapped but the boat had moved closer to shore. The plan had worked.

 

I then left them to it and they pulled the boat ashore. I was watching the back of the boat and saw a few feet behind the fly bridge all messed up. I collected it and started carrying it to the beach. They then got the boat close enough to the shore and used a bakkie and some rope to flip it back over. It was a very sad site to see.

 

It was then back to my family and home for breakfast. I chatted to my kids and they shared that they where scared for me. I explained what I had done and that safety was a top priority for me.

 

What I found worrying was where is the safety crew. These guys have massive boats and not all of them are fit and healthy. I am glad that the people where ok and managed to get back to shore safely. I was glad that I could help. It was fun and full of adrenaline.

 

The boats name is Wizzard.

 

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Stand up and fish – sup fisher

I was busy looking at pinterest when this caught my eye https://pinterest.com/pin/151081762469325464/ I like it a lot!

I love fishing off a kayak but one thing I miss is standing, being on your bum for hours is not ideal. The places you can use this sup fisher here in South Africa is wide. Not to mention the challenges of croc and shark infested fishing waters. Think of this in Richards Bay, just watch out for the ships, not to mention the lots and lots of rivers we have. When you go to a farm dam for a quick fish, the paddle board will be lots of fun.

Stealth Surfa Kayak, waveski or paddle ski

Surfa kayakSurfa is a Plastic rotomoulded kayak now available at fishingencounters.co.za

 

The Surfa has been designed by the industry leaders, Stealth. The Surfa has incredible wave surfing capabilities and is the ideal craft for youngsters to have heaps of fun on. The cost of the Surfa is R3100.00 (incl Vat excluding delivery) but it will be a lifetime of fun. The Surfa kayak weighs only 15kg and is made of  highly durable polyethelene which makes the Surfa indestructible!

 

Based on the concept of a waveski or paddle ski, Stealth designed the surfa with a little bit extra length and width than a traditional waveski. Measuring in at 2,9m long and 0,6m wide this gives the kayaker a little extra stability so that they can spend more time having fun rather than learning to balance. Ultimately a super fun family kayak that caters for everyone. The Stealth Surfa kayak is light enough for the kids to handle and paddle.  The Surfa Kayak is able to cater for a person up to 80kgs so even mom and the older kids can have a blast. Another great feature is the varying positions or foot length options on the kayak meaning that it is suitable for people of all different heights from small kids to average size adults.

 

The Surfa is a fun and easy to use kayak with no panic of it breaking and breaking the bank 🙂

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Here are some pictures of my kids playing on a surfa

 

Dimensions
Weight 15 kgs
Length 2,9m
Width 0.6m

Colours
Red, Tropica orange, yellow, bronze olive, blue and grey

Price
R3100.00 incl Vat – excluding delivery

Contact me for further details or Phone me 083 681 9281 if you want to come and see what it looks like, I am based in JHB.

Features of the Hunter Ski Fishing Kayak

26 kg of highly durable polyethylene ready to change the way you fish! Loads of deck storage and hatch storage for the adventurous paddler. Utility trays on either side of the paddler for temporary storage of lures, pliers etc. Exceptional stability.

Length: 3.45m
Width: 0.83cm
Weight: 28kgs

Sit on top kayak

  • Wet cockpit area drains quickly and efficiently, thus inevitable splashing does not enter the hull.
  • Fisherman can enter and exit cockpit with ease, from just about anywhere, even in the water. The wide stable design also assists with easy access.
  • The wet deck, sit on top kayak design, makes it extremely versatile, for example, it can be used as a buoy and catch box while spearfishing.
  • It will never sink!

The Deck

  • The upper half of the kayak has a non-slip surface molded into the polyethylene. So, even when wet, the paddler has total control over the vessel.
  • There are four different length foot rests for different height paddlers molded into the deck of the boat.
  • There is a very large storage area on the deck behind the paddlers back. The flat nature of this area means that hatches can be fitted anywhere here. Live bait buckets or cooler boxes, its big enough to fit just about anything.
  • Long thin storage trays on either side of the paddler allow safe temporary storage for lures, films, bullets or whatever else. These trays also have a molded in cup holder on each side.
  • Three or more hatches of different sizes can be fitted on the deck that allow storage within the hull of the kayak. Although the inside of the hull does get wet in choppier water, leakage is minimal. On calm water, the inside can be used as dry storage. These hatches also provide access to the steering cables on the inside for easy maintenance or modifications.

Stability

  • At 86cm wide the Hunter Ski provides phenomenal stability. With some nice weather and good balance you are able to stand up on the kayak.
  • Such stability will increase the confidence of any level of paddler and better and more daring exploration will take place.

Steering (optional extra)

  • A durable stainless steel rudder is attached to the stern of the Hunter Ski.
  • This rudder is directed by a lightweight aluminum foot steering system.
  • The aluminum foot steering system can be controlled while paddling.

Utility drain holes

  • Behind the paddlers seat there is a rectangular storage recess with two drainage holes. A cooler-box, bait-box, diving gear or anything else can be stored here.
  • These drainage holes are extremely useful. A set of wheels can be plugged in from underneath. The wheels available from Hunter Ski as an accessory are welded from stainless steel. This is brilliant for when a lot of kit is on the kayak and carrying it will be quite difficult. With the wheels the kayak can just be reversed into deep enough water to take the wheels out. The stainless steel will avoid rusting.
  • Once launched, and the wheels removed, a T-top canopy can be plugged into these holes from on top. Hunter Ski has developed this canopy from lightweight aluminum and the sun is blocked out with durable rip-block material. The canopy has a swiveling point and can be moved out of the way for casting etc.

Nylon Seat

  • Built for comfort. Paddling without a seat can be very taxing on the lower back and hamstrings.
  • The seat is adjustable using the two straps on either side of the paddlers that are clipped onto the boat.
  • Strips of polycarbonate are built into the seat to provide support and strength.
  • The deluxe seat version has an extra pocket, an extra cup holder, an extra rod holder, and a belt clip to hold tools that normally go onto your belt.

Fish-ability

  • Up to 12 rod holders can be installed onto the Hunter Ski , these can be used for trolling, rod storage, to connect one kayak to another, and in many other creative ways.
  • Under the paddlers legs is space to tie down a tackle box. This allows for easy access and the fisherman can keep his deck tidy.
  • The utility trays on either side of the paddler allow for temporary storage of lures, bait or anything that may be convenient close at hand.
  • Rods can be tied down either in front, or behind of the paddler, on the storage decks. This may be necessary when launching and there is a possibility of capsizing.

Hunterski fishing kayak

Today I went on a mission and popped in at the Hunterski workshop. Brian was happy to show me around and explain how the kayaks got made. Unfortunately they where not making any hunterskis today, but I will be back to see it in action, I am also keen to bring my camera next time. The hunterski kayak is router molded and Brian popped open a mold and explain how they put powder plastic into to aluminum mold and then clamp the two halves together. The mold is a bit like a sheep on the spit, it rotates slowly so that the plastic can end up all over the inside. They then take the mold and pop it in an oven, the oven tilts up and down so again the powder plastic can get all over the place. The oven blasts hot air all over the mold, which then melts the plastic and makes it stick to the sides. Once that is done the mold is taken out the oven and allowed to cool. The cooling process is assisted with fans and misters. Once it is cool it is popped open and one blank hunterski is born. They then add all the rod holders and other bobs and bits. And in the end you have a very cool fishing kayak made right here in Johannesburg South Africa.

Thanks Brian from http://www.hunterski.co.za/ for showing me around and I look forward to selling your home grown South African product. Please contact me Lantz Mattinson email lantz(at)fishingencounters.co.za should you want more details one pricing.