Tintswalo Lapalala will be introducing fly-fishing on a ‘catch, release and research’ basis as a new activity within the pristine Waterberg reserve. Located three hours’ drive from Johannesburg, the sprawling 48 500 ha Lapalala Wilderness Reserve is a malaria-free sanctuary for many plant and animal species. These include the Big 5, but it is the spectacular Palala river that runs 37 kilometers through the reserve that sets it apart. With riverside locations that are easily accessible on foot, rocky rapids as well as deep, calm pools of clear and unpolluted water present exhilarating fishing opportunities suitable for all competency levels.
The Palala river is teeming with fish that includes healthy populations of a wide variety of species such as yellow fish, barbel, largemouth bass, red breasted and blue tilapia to offer excellent nymph style fly-fishing. In the dam, carp, yellow fish, silver catfish, barbel and tilapia offer sinking-line fishing for novices, including children.
The Lapalala Wilderness Reserve is one of the largest private reserves in South Africa and was founded in 1981 by conservation champions, Dale Parker and Clive Walker. It is recognised as a champion of sustainable wildlife conservation with the vision to leave a legacy for generations to come. Fishing is scientifically monitored and operated strictly on a catch-and-release basis. Led by qualified nature guides who are passionate and competent anglers, data is collected for ongoing scientific research projects.
During the drier months, April through to October provide the best fishing opportunities when the river is calmer and more accessible. During the summer months fishing excursions take place in the south of the reserve where the deep pools may yield feisty yellow fish of more than a kilogram.
Specialist fly-fishing packages are customized for keen anglers, while regular guests may opt for early morning or late afternoon fishing excursions. Guests may also choose to spend the day out in the reserve fishing at leisure and enjoying the tranquility of a river picnic at lunch.