River Coghinas (Sardinia, Italy)
The Island of Sardinia in Italy is surely one of the most charming places in the Mediterranean sea. Its white beaches and turquoise water make it one of the most beloved destination for turists. In summer, due to the tropical heat and the drought, many water streams dry out or turn into rills. There are some interesting exception though, like the river Coghinas in the north of the island.
The Coghinas river has its source in the Alá mountain. It collects the waters of many minor tributaries and crosses 2 lakes: the Coghinas lake and the lake of Casteldoria (in the picture above). Near Casteldoria there are some hot springs and thermal baths, that were well know already in the ancient Roman times. After a run of of 116 km. it flows into the Asinara gulf.
The Coghinas hosts one of the most voracious predators of the European fresh waters: the black bass, almost unknow in the north of Europe, it is widely spread in the south. It was imported in the 19th Centur from North America and since then it has settle down very well. In the old continent it reachs a maximum weight of 3 to 4 Kg.
For I did not have precise information about where to find them, I went exploring a bit, however the black bass is here present almost everywhere, including the brackish water of the estuary mouth. To fish here the ordinary italian license (yearly price around 30 Euro) is required, alternatively the turistic license, valid for 3 months.
I have been fishing exclusively "dry" on the surface, with big gurglers or sliders. I was quite successful by casting very close to the reeds and often I could catch even 2 or 3 fishes in the same 5 square meters of water surface.
In spite of the dog-days in the afternoon the blacks showed all their aggressivity, biting the fly by instinct or simply by curiosity or annoyance. In any case the number of fishes I have caught exceeded my best expectations.
Most of the fishes were around 25 to 35 cm. in size and offered a vigourous resistence made of jumps out of the water and flights to the bottom.
In search of some bigger blacks I decided to use a bigger slider, hoping that in spite of the sun and heat some of the big ones would decide to come out of the hideout. Probably the sunset would have been a better moment .. however, meanwhile the slider was hiccuping close to a bank of emerging water weeds, I perceived the wake of the back of a black heading fast to my fly and a second later I started a fight with a good sized fish, that after a couple of spectacular and sudden jumps left me with a flabby line, staring at the water.
In the picture above a big slider that had some good success. If you bind the flies yourself, I recommend to use the weed-guard (in the picture realised with a thick nylon), which will enable you to let the slider work effectively on top of the emerging waterplants, where often the big black bass rest in ambush.
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