What a privilege it was to be invited to fish the Kasai Channel and the Chobe river at Ichingo Lodge recently. I was accompanied by Fishtube prize winner, Werner Nell, a keen artlure angler who had never caught a tiger fish before, and was amped to add this iconic African species to his list of fish.
We flew to Kasane International airport in Botswana, where we were collected and transferred to the pick up point on the Chobe river. We checked out of Botswana immigration and jumped onto a boat, which took us on the short ride to the bottom of Impalila island at the confluence of the Chobe and Kasai. This is one of the most beautiful little corners of Africa, with the lodge having been built unobtrusively into the riverine trees, overlooking the rapids and islands in front of it.
The birds of the area use the trees on the islands in front of the lodge as a nesting colony, with hundreds of yellowbilled storks, spoonbills, ibis, cormorants, herons and egrets bringing up their young in shaggy stick nests over the water. Crocodiles sun themselves on the banks below, fat from eating the catfish that lie in wait for scraps below the nesting colony.
We had a quick snack after checking in to the lodge, having been welcomed and entertained by the ever smiling local manager, Kennedy. We then jumped onto a boat and headed out for a sunset fishing session in the rapids nearby.