19/06/2009 The swoffing family
Next to visit me on Safari was my mother and father who made the journey over from South Africa to join me for a week and having not seen them for the past 18 months naturally there was a lot of catching up to be done. Both mum and dad fly fish and it wasn't long before rods were rigged and we were off in search of some fish on the flats.
Mum was using a 7wt Orvis T3 that I gave her for her birthday coupled with a Shilton SL5 and Dad was using a 9wt Sage Xi2 with a Shilton SL6.
The swoffing family, kitted and ready to go ..
We walked the beaches in search of fish moving along the flat and it wasn't long before Papa Swoff connected to his first fish and naturally there was a healthy dose of 'I caught the first fish' ...
It wasn't long before Mum's 7wt was soon put to the test when she connected to an 'unstoppable' off the boat on a windy afternoon. 20 mins later we were still connected and with fading light I decided to pop it off. It would have been a big cod or something ..
Ninja buff and all, there's no stopping my mother ... scanning the horizon for signs of action from the safe perch of the casting deck
Family time is very special indeed and having not seen the folks for the past 18 months, it was a great opportunity to do something unique together. April to July is prime whale shark season along the Ningaloo Reef so we spent a day on a local charter boat and snorkelled with the biggest fish in the sea. A truly remarkable experience ..
As ever, the day was filled with humour and the man behind the laughs was none other than my Dad ..
We also had the chance to swim with a group of manta rays which was totally mind-blowing. There were 7 of them that swam around us as they fed.
The weather was pretty average and the wind blew for most of the week but when it cleared we loaded the boat with fuel and supplies and headed off for a little camping and fishing.
Mum not afraid of a little hard work, collecting fire wood.
We caught mud crabs for dinner and sat around the campfire at night, under a blanket of a billion stars enjoying a fine bottle of wine in the Australian bush. Nothing in the world is better than spending quality time with those you love.
After breakfast we headed out for a fish and with the weather against us again it was into the creeks looking for jacks and cod. Mum casting flies into the snags ..
Under extremely difficult conditions, Dad eventually connected to a fish ... that's the way Dad, pull down and to the side, turn it's head ..
Mum and Dad, I love you both and thanks so much for getting behind me and supporting me during this adventure. Sharing time with you both on and off the water means the world to me.