2020 Season Report - Dhala and Samaki Camp, Tanzania Trophy Tigerfish
Trip Report
By Brian Gies
March 9, 2021
From our friends at African Waters. 

It was with renewed vigor and excitement we opened up 2020 Tanzania tigerfish season with KNS. The normal 12 week season, being reduced to 3 weeks due to the ongoing C-19 pandemic, meant the guides, camp staff and support crew could go above and beyond to ensure all guests who made the journey to the Mnyera and Ruhudji Rivers experienced the best the area had to offer. With this ‘go ‘till you blow’ attitude over the short season, the guides team’s energy levels were at all time high and  this soon rubbed off onto the guests as we got stuck into great fish from the onset.

Tanzania experienced one of the wettest rainy season in recent memory, meaning th normal low and warm water we experience in Oct/Nov, were more in line with early season August levels – cold and faster flowing. This is a double edged sword – cold and high means the fish’s metabolisms are slower, so they do not feed as aggressively, and the feeding windows are shorter. But, at the same time, it ensures the fish are all in absolutely sublime conditions, fat, strong and incredibly fast with unmatched stamina due to the well oxygenated water.  The guides’ team of Greg, Stu, Brent, Keith, and Rob were soon onto this, and the smaller dark profile flies, fished slowly tight to stricter were the ticket.
It seemed we are just getting into our stride when the charter arrived at Ndolo strip with the last group of the season. Camp regulars of Seb, Bruce, and Allen were joined by Jed, Jon, Ross and Geoff for what was to be superb last week to the season. With the water temps warming up, the smaller fish started to feed more aggressively, resulting in more action between the feeding windows of the big trophy fish.

Bruce, new to fly fishing opened his account with a super 16lb fish that ate deep in structure in a shallow bay off the main current and  proceeded to burn figures and drags before coming to hand. What made this an even more remarkable catch for a first time fly fishermen, was the fact that Bruce was severely impeded by the latent effects of the surplus whisky he ingested the night/morning before.

Ross from Kokstad was paired with Jon on the boat. The accuracy and intensity at which he fished was a pleasure to watch, and he was rewarded with a steady ‘string’ of trophy fish as the week went on. The pinnacle of which was a 21lb fish pulled off the structure in the upper beats. Jon on the other hand, had a slower start to his week as he battled to get rid of his trout fishing habits, with  trout strikes and a delicate fighting style  resulting in numerous lost opportunities. After a series of harsh words from fellow anglers, and not so subtle encouragement from the guides, he began to hit his strides and ended up the week with an incredible 21 and 23lb fish on the last day – these fish to compliment a host of fish in the 12 – 16b range landed by the pair on the same day. It was a fitting end to an incredible season, and a day’s fly fishing for tigerfish which will be hard to forget.

A huge thanks to all our colleagues, KNS, our agents across the globe and  our loyal  guests who made the trip out to camp this season. The three weeks of normalcy the season represented after the year we have all had, cannot be underestimated, and it is with renewed vigor and optimism we end the year and head into 2021.

All the best

Keith, Rob, Greg, Stu, Brent, Zidane, Quinton and the entire KNS and AW teams.
Tanzania Trophy Tigerfish Safari, Tanzania
Chase one of the hardest hitting fish in the world. 

Director of Travel Operations

Brian Gies

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