I dont know if I should be glad that we are actually spoiled for choice regarding publick access to venues or a bit jellous about the fact that you guys have loads of well manged Waters albite it be in Association hands. It is by my reckoning a double edged sword. To maintain a publick access water means the cost of maintaining such waters is derived in dribs and drabs as people might feel fit to use the water for fishing. This might lead to a demise as funds are not readebly available for the upkeep thereoff. Privatising would cause it to be stocked and access deneid to some of teh social anglers that only occasionally fish but the water would be well maintaned with regular member fees. I think in South Africa is prime examples thereoff with waters that are owned and run by Local authorities beeing in a poor state and those that are privately owned are florrishing. I dont know if there will ever be a middleway unless someone out there is willing to create a non proffit, Fully managed, completely natural fishery open to all. Any Takers??
We probably do not have as many well managed waters as you think Leon. The vast majority of river fishing is controlled by local associations of which anyone can join. In addition they will sell you a day ticket on the bank if you are an occasional visitor to the water.
The problem is lack of bailiffing and the fact that you can get your car stolen or broken into if you fish some distance from it. The other problem is mugging. If you are an elderly, disabled or infirm person and you fish on your own you are at great risk. In South Africa you could literally drive your car to your fishing spot. Not only that I always carried a back up piece with me, although thankfully I never had to use it.
I felt much safer on the bank in SA than I do in the UK these days.
I have read about your misfortune with crime Ron and count my lucky stars that the only crime hitting me was a window bashing and mobile grabbing thug on my way from work in the middle of Jo'burg. I remember as a small kid joining my father in some fishing trips in places that even wild animals would not visit. Unfortunatly some of our fisher Folks mentioned in another string has caused these places to be closed to anglers. That has left us with variuos Publick waterways but has also left us as soft targets for thugs. The bad thing is that for your own saftey you must limit yourself to day trips and no early arrivals at the waters. If you are a lone angler next to these waters you might become a statistic. But I dont complain i am quite satisfeid to limit my excursion to local club waters where you can still relax and enjoy the African way of Life. I am fortunate to be able to belong to Clubs on the Vaal River which means I have access to a maintained Site but with trully wild Fish.
Virtually all the waters I fished in SA were controlled by clubs or private syndicates. I was a member for many years of The Rand Piscatorial Association who had waters at Hartebeesport, Vaal Dam, Vaal River and The Benoni Dams.
In 27 years of living in South Africa I only had two problems. The one where I was carjacked doen the end of Booysens Road - but that was my fault, taking a silly shortcut, and tho other, a burglary where only a few small items were taken. I have camped and fished all over the place with never a problem.
Not so in Britain. Here I have never experienced so much raw violence in my life. Not only that but the police seem powerless against these thugs. You probably read of the recent voilence in London.
In Britain they tend to imprison the victims and let the criminals go. The classic example is of a farmer called Tony Martin who shot two burglars who entered his house. He was given a life sentence for "murder" would you believe!!
Yep I Saw it on BBC news when he was Sentinced. I alos saw it wasnt the first time that these people actually broke into his house. My honest oppinion is that it is a worldwide problem. We actually had the sittuation that came down to the following rediculous argument in our high Courts. With respect to human rights the following was decided. If a person is murdered he looses all Human right seeing that he is dead and therefore the murderer has more human rights and that comes down to the right to live. Crazy but true. I just think the world is crazy and one has to make the best of one's sittuation. It has been a 18 months since my smash and grab and still i look like a lookout meerkat when stopping at any traffic light in JHB. I just fear that should i become a victom of crime while fishing that i might never enjoy it again as I do now. So i rather fish less often that i used to but at places where i trust i can feel safe.
Dear Ron, a long time ago you asked for a one word explanation about Carp fishing.
BECAUSE they are big?
BECAUSE they are there?
or BECAUSE of the KUDOS in being seen to catch the biggest, hardest to catch or best looking? The KUDOS in bold was deliberate for our tabloid chasers, but does it really matter where you fish,(their will allways be a market for instant big fish), due to human "i want it now" mentality, whether here or in France. I also grew up chasing Roach, Dace and Chub, but would you really hate me if my P.B. was 47lb from france, albeit from a water that was not artificially stocked with "Biggies" just babies 25 years ago?