Fish Talk with ….. Daniel Factor

by Michael Cronje

Today I continue my fortnightly column with a look into the fishing career of 24 year old flyfisher, Daniel Factor. Currently the sales manager at Stealth Fly Fishing, Daniel comes from Johannesburg and represents Gauteng North in competitive flyfishing circles. In fact, he has captained this provincial team since 2011. He’s competed in three senior and one junior World Championships and one Oceania Championships. On top of that, he’s fished three youth, and six senior South African Championships, winning individual Gold, Silver and Bronze plus six team medals. At the recent 2014 SA Fly Fishing National Championships he took individual Gold and team Gold. Let’s get stuck into the questions then.


Q: Can you describe how you developed your love for fishing? What was the catalyst that started it all for you? MC
A: I can’t put an age on this, but I would guess I was seven years old or so. All I can remember was it took one fish and then the rest of my future was decided. I think it was the excitement and uncontrollable tension that hooked me. I am not proud to say that my first fish on fly was in a breeding pen at a trout farm with fish fighting for my fly but we all have to start somewhere. DF

Q: How long have you been flyfishing? MC

A: I started flyfishing around 6 months after I started bait fishing, the catch and keep rules at trout farms got really expensive after I figured out trout eggs and a sinker. DF

Q: With such a demanding schedule, how often do you get to fish? MC

A: I try to split up my time on the water and go through stages depending on the domestic and international tournament schedules. I spend at least 150 days of the year on the water. I really do believe that there is no better preparation than just being on the water and developing that sixth sense. For about 8 weeks before a tournament I spend as much time trout fishing as possible. In between championships I enjoy largemouth yellowfish and saltwater flyfishing. DF


Q: Who is your biggest inspiration outside of angling? MC

A: I don’t know much outside of angling (laughs.) DF
Q: Tell us about some of your favourite Mpumalanga fishing spots. MC

A: I would have to say Verlorenkloof in between Belfast and Lydenburg. This spot has the finest trout river fishing in Mpumalanga. DF

Q: Has there been an epic battle with a particular fish that stands out in your mind? MC

A: I would say the three monster fish at Loch Logan a few weeks back. I landed three fish on light 5lb Airflo G3 fluorocarbon. This was the toughest sector at the last SA National flyfishing Championship. I had to step down to get these fish to commit to the fly. These fish helped me win individual gold at the championship. DF
Q: How do you feel is the best way to excite South Africans about flyfishing in the years to come? MC

A: Go with the guys that know their stuff, and the waters. There is nothing more boring than not catching fish and getting it wrong. Learn as much as you can and increase that catch rate. DF


Q: What’s your go to summertime fly for trout when nothing’s working? MC

A: The Copper Hopper. DF
Q: What do you consider your primary fishing strengths? MC

A: European nymphing and CDC dry fly work. DF

Q: What’s something few people know about you? MC

A: I do enjoy some bait fishing. Sliding out heads for sharks is top of my list. DF


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