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Current River Levels, Temps and Info

Date: Tuesday August, 2014

Three day Goulburn River Level Forecast here :
Lake Eildon Storage:   86.4%
Lake Eildon River Inflows:   3100 Megalitres/Day MLD What does this number mean?
Goulburn River Level:  1000 Megalitres/Day
Goulburn Water temp:  11.9 degrees Celsius
Goulburn Dissolved oxygen:   9.8 parts per million
Eildon Pondage Level:        31% Subject to change
Rainfall past 24 hours:        0.6 mm but up to 90mm in the catchment above the lake

Purchase your fishing licence online here

Phone:  03 5774 3928 for the latest info on Goulburn River levels. Message updated daily at 9am.
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Recent Articles

26
Aug

Sorry about the glitch…regular transmission will be restored…

Thanks to all that contacted me to let me know that my blog, and as a result, Facebook was spewing out old emails from the past few years.

I have made the appropriate correction to the db and it should be fixed now. The joys of having two toddlers and therefore only having late night hours in which to work on the back end of the business.

Thanks again guys for letting me know so quickly.

Ant

26
Aug

Our stream is back up and running

Our in-house, man-made creek is back up and running. River fishing in the closed season and somewhere private to teach, even on the busiest of long weekends!!!

Our in-house, man-made creek is back up and running. River fishing in the closed season and somewhere private to teach, even on the busiest of long weekends!!!

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6
Aug

GVFFC TRIP STATUS UPDATE

SWAMPY PLAIN FLOAT TRIPS NOV 2014- 3 spots left from a total of 12

PATAGONIA TRIP DEC 2014 - 3 spots left from a total of 13

NEW ZEALAND MAR 2015 – 7 spots left from a total of 50

MONTANA 2015 - 6 spots left from a total of 16

Please click the appropriate advert below for more information or phone FreeCall 180 458 111 for more information or to make a booking.

Cheers
Antony

patagonia

 

idaho

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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5
Aug

USA 2014: A Few Pics

Here are some photos from our most recent trip to Idaho and Montana. The fishing was once again amazing with the real proof of this being the fact that I never took my camera out the entire time. I was too busy catching fish! Thankfully we all carry our phones everywhere these days.

Next year’s trip is now up and available for booking. The format has changed as many of our repeat clients want to experience some new places, and so in 2015 we will spend the two weeks split between two locations. The first down in Eastern Idaho and the second up on the plains of Montana.

Sing out if you want any more information on these trips and enjoy the pics.
Antony

Goulburn Valley Fly Fishing Centre
Free Call 1800 458 111 or (03) 5773 2513

Website: http://www.gvffc.com
Blog: http://www.flyfishingupdates.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/GVflyfishing

To the unitiated it would appear that the rattlesnakes are the major concern

To the unitiated it would appear that the rattlesnakes are the major concern

Launching in the Teton Canyon; it ain't called the Bitch Creek Slide for nothing

Launching in the Teton Canyon; it ain’t called the Bitch Creek Slide for nothing

A three man operation

A three man operation

Traffic jam Idaho style

Traffic jam Idaho style

suckin air

suckin air

steeper than it looks

steeper than it looks

finally

finally

worth all the effort - at least for the lazy bastards fishing

worth all the effort – at least for the lazy bastards fishing

emerald run

emerald run

the one fish shot from probably 160 caught for the drift

the one fish shot from probably 160 caught for the drift

scouting rapids is mandatory

scouting rapids is mandatory

technical rapid

technical rapid

the 'lakes' between the fast water are beautiful - note the only other boat we saw all day in the distance

the ‘lakes’ between the fast water are beautiful – note the only other boat we saw all day in the distance

Pepper spray

Pepper spray

Desert storm on the way through Utah

Desert storm on the way through Utah

The beautiful Teton

The beautiful Teton

Parking lot

Parking lot

Launching on the Missouri and not a boat in sight

Launching on the Missouri and not a boat in sight

Yellowstone

Yellowstone

The Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River

The Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River

Upper Mesa Falls

Upper Mesa Falls

Teton River below the failed dam

Teton River below the failed dam

Teton riffle

Teton riffle

God's Country

God’s Country

A South Fork riffle the size of a footy field

A South Fork riffle the size of a footy field

Healthy choices

Healthy choices

Teton Canyon

Teton Canyon

Another Missouri River brown

Another Missouri River brown

Missouri Soup - tricos as far as the eye could see

Missouri Soup – tricos as far as the eye could see

Would you like to fish this?

Would you like to fish this?

Stunning fish

Stunning fish

The release

The release

Typical brown

Typical brown

23
Jun

Last of our Clearance Items – Sale Ends Thursday 9pm

SALE ENDS 9PM THURSDAY 26 JUNE OR UNTIL SOLD OUT

We have a limited number of ex-demo and clearance items up for grabs. These are all single units and will ship via registered post within 1 business day of payment.

All rods come with their tubes and rod bags. Links to most of the items can be found by clicking the title of each listing. Some of the sunglasses have incorrectly marked cases and Vision reel may come with a generic box if we cannot locate the original. Waders are unboxed but will be carefully packed to avoid damage.

Phone 03 5773 2513 or 0418 995 611 for more info.

 

UPDATED MONDAY JUNE 23

Vanquish 5.6 with Scientific Anglers  #6  Sharkshin Magnum Taper PLUS spare spool and backing. Ex-Demo in EC Condition.New cost Reel $709 +Spool$380 + Line $129 = $1218  PRICE $579.00

Vanquish 5.6 with Scientific Anglers  #6  Sharkshin Magnum Taper PLUS spare spool and backing

Vanquish 5.6 with Scientific Anglers #6 Sharkshin Magnum Taper PLUS spare spool and backing

 

8 foot 4 weight Innovator Velocity ($299), Vision CDC 3-4  reel ($499) + Teeny La Fontaine # 4 line ($99) = Not $897 SALE PRICE = $530 delivered

4wt-with-vision-cdc

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9 foot 7 weight Innovator Velocity ($299), FORCE 3XL (original model – highly sought after) ($499) + RIO line # 7  ($99) = Not $897 SALE PRICE = $530 delivered. Can’t work out which model line is on it so throwing in a SA Streamer Express WF-250-S for fishing streamers.

(Add $125 for spare spool with line on it!)

 

9 foot 7 weight Innovator Velocity ($299), FORCE 3XL (original model - highly sought after) ($499) + Teeny La Fontaine # 4 line ($99) = $580 delivered (Add $125 for spare spool!)

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9 foot 5 weight SCOTT Radian ($950), FORCE 2XL (current model ) ($599) + RIO GOLD  # 5 line ($99) = Not $1648 SALE PRICE = $850 delivered

(Add $125 for spare spool!)

5wt-radian-with-force-2x

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SPOTTERS SUNGLASSES CRUZ PENETRATORS NEW $289.50   $199 Shipped. Click link for more info.

cruiz-penetrator

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SPOTTERS SUNGLASSES THUNDER PENETRATORS NEW $289.50   $199 Shipped. Click link for more info.

thunder-penetrator

 

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SPOTTERS SUNGLASSES CRUZ  Blue Mirror on Grey NEW $289.50   $199 Shipped. Click link for more info.

cruiz--ice

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WATERWORKS FORCE 2LT REEL EX-DEMO. Excellent Condition. Our best selling high-end reel. Comes with new #5 RIO GOLD line ready to fish. $689 with line   $399 Shipped. Click link for more info.

Image

Image

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We also have three pairs of breathable waders that we are clearing at 50% off.

SNOWBEE PRESTIGE WAIST HIGH BREATHABLES  SIZE EXTRA LARGE = Shoe Size 11-12  Chest 52” Waist 48”  $145 Shipped. Click link for more info.
VISION IKON STOCKING FOOT FULL LENGTH WADER SIZE SMALL =  Chest 112cm  Waist 109cm Inseam 86cm Outseam 141cm  Colour is a paler khaki than in photo.$145 Shipped. Click link for more info.
VISION IKON STOCKING FOOT FULL LENGTH WADER SIZE LARGE  =  Chest 127cm  Waist 124cm Inseam 93cm Outseam 150cm  Colour is a paler khaki than in photo. $145 Shipped. Click link for more info.

 

 

 

19
Jun

Reminiscing on the season that was…..

It’s been a long season here on the Goulburn and we are finally getting some time to catch up on all the jobs that get relegated to the ‘too hard basket’ during the hustle and bustle of the regular trout season. It’s already been a good break and with trips to Idaho and Montana to come in the next few weeks, I am sure that we will return home completely refreshed and ready to tackle the new season head-on with a new found gusto.

It may seem like the dream job to many, and don’t get me wrong it is a lot of fun most of the time, but working nearly seven days a week for nine months is pretty draining. The only thing that keeps us sane is the fact that we have a tremendous crew who really look out for each other, and if there is a break in the work and one of us wants to go to New Zealand for a week or up to the Swampy for a few days, we cover for each other. It has always been that way with the two of us and it is why after 20 years of working together and a 28 year age difference, we are still business partners; and more importantly, friends.

malcolm-02

The thing that has made the past couple of years much harder for me has been the arrival of my two children (Sasha 3 y.o. 4mo. and Ava 16 mo.). I am often running on 3-4 hours of sleep as I play Mr Mom 4 days a week while also running the shop. This has seen me getting less and less time for my own personal fishing as well as plenty of late nights catching up on emails, orders and general organisational work. Apologies if I’ve messed up one of your orders this year; it’s been a difficult time on this end!

I run most nights sometime around 8pm-11pm (once the kids are asleep) and then I catch up on work when I get back. As a result I never get to bed before 2.30am. While not a bad thing if the World Cup, Tour De France or Wimbledon are on. But barring some world class sporting event; it is physically and mentally draining. If you have seen the movie ‘Fight Club’ you will recognise these words from the narrator –  ‘With insomnia, nothing’s real. Everything’s far away. Everything’s a copy of a copy of a copy.’ That’s life for me as a father/fishing  guide/business owner at the moment.

fri-jan-10-01

If there is a yin to my yang it’s that David my business partner is getting more time than ever to do a few interesting fishing trips, as the business ticks along and people like Werner, Bo, James and Cameron help out more and more. All the while it seems that I am always in the shop with two kids attached at the hip or rowing a drift boat or organising trips for people. While it’s great to see that David has Idaho/Montana, Patagonia New Zealand and Venezuela on the agenda for the next 6-9 months and plenty of local trips to places like the Swampy and Tumut. I’m nevertheless jealous.

Sometimes it’s very easy to forget that others have already done this parenting thing and that they too went through much the same experiences. Not much consolation I’ll admit, but sometimes it’s worth saying out loud, or in this case typing it, as it forces one to actually think about how short a stage in life this is.

fri-jan-10-04

That aside it’s been an incredible year. So many great days on the water with so many interesting people; ok except for the couple that fought the whole day without let up in the 42 degree heat while I rowed,  offered them drinks and generally kept score on the important points and counter-points of their bout! That was the toughest 9 hours of rowing I’ve had in years.

A guide’s job description should read 10% fishing skills, 10% rowing ability and 80% psychologist; be it just your garden variety therapist or a couples counsellor of some sort. In fact this leads me to believe that we should significantly up our day rate because eight hours of providing numerous fishing opportunities, lunch, drinks, flies, shuttles, rowing a boat and ‘listening’, is worth way more than $500. At least in America the guides get tipped as well.

Harry-04

OK. Now I’m letting rip.

For me the highlight of the season was definitely the Goulburn River terrestrial fishing in December, January and February. It started out with Andrew, a surgeon and long-time client from Melbourne who willingly fished my untested monstrosity, since named the ‘Serbian Ant’, on what was a slow fishing day. Several great fish in the space of two hours led me to the distinct feeling that I was onto something which then gave me the confidence to insist to my new client that we fish it the following day. From the start of our float we immediately did well, scoring a great brown within 50 metres of Thornton Bridge and only 10 minutes into our drift. This was followed by another solid fish 5 minutes later and yet another just above Gilmore’s Bridge. A great session by anyone’s assessment. Yet the fish kept coming.

The weeks that followed were filled with outsized fish, the most remarkable session being 13 fish over 2lb and the biggest 4lb. Now many of you will know that we don’t boast about size and numbers of fish,you really can’t when you live in Australia, but this was something totally out of the ordinary and the best ‘big fish’ fishing I can ever recall on the Goulburn. Even better than the peak of the willow grubbing 2-3 years ago.

A Goulburn edgewater riser  from this afternoon.

A Goulburn edgewater riser from this afternoon.

Which brings us to the biggest let down of the season in terms of expected hatches and events that never happened. The once ubiquitous willow grubs.

The summer of 2013-2014 was as bad as the previous year for these little green eating machines. For whatever reason, the grubs never really got going this summer and they were sporadic at best, to the point where we just fished huge terrestrials 99% of the time and kept on drifting by whenever we saw a willow grubber; or threw the Serbian Ant at it with disdain.

Speculation was rife but my unscientific take on this poor showing by the grubs, is that it was simply due to the  weather. For the second year running we had a wet/cooler lead start to summer and it was obvious that the grubs were being killed off nearly as soon as they hatched. A burst of warmth would bring them out in huge numbers and a couple of days later a heavy rain would knock most of them off the leaves and the cold overnight temps would kill the rest. Of course there is some research from other parts of the world that suggests a cycle of booming populations (4-7 years if I recall) after which they do so much damage that they actually kill the tree. Obviously not the case here as we have more willows than ever before and most never even got stripped of their foliage this time around; such was the poor showing of the grubs in 2014.

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The good news for the willow grub aficionados out there ( but bad for every other living creature ;-) ) is the prediction for a >70% that we will head into an El Nino cycle this spring/summer. All the best willow grub years have coincided with such weather patterns with the main difference that we have plenty of water in the lake this time and so the river will remain cold throughout the season, unlike those El Nino years when the Goulburn was often<500 MLD in high summer and got as high as 28 degrees.

I have to admit to being rather excited at this prospect. Sneaking away in the middle of the day is much more likely a proposition for the father of young kids than, say at last light. So I will gladly trade a dusk spinner fall or dun hatch for a lunch time sortie on willow grub feeders. Self-interest is a curious and wonderful thing and something I don’t even try to mask in a socialist guise. This blog is about me after all. ;-)

sun-19-jan

One thing I learned this year that surprised me given the previous umpteen seasons guiding on the Goulburn and not ever seeing anything like it before, was simply how many ‘large fish ‘were willing to take huge #6-8 terrestrials drawn across their noses. This makes no sense in a river like the Goulburn where water is released from way down deep, free of sediment and where the bugs are mostly small.

OK the fish smash huge dries like this in many similar rivers in Montana, Idaho and Wyoming but those rivers are home to huge #6-8 critters called ‘stoneflies'; whereas we only get the diminutive cousins that hardly inspire the trout to ridiculous feeding binges.

tues-21-jan-02

My only explanation for the willingness of the fish to eat such large dry flies this season, is that it was the year of the gigantic black cicada and the fish were used to such large bugs. To further back up this theory of mine is the fact that this summer is the only time I have seen a fish eat one of these live cicadas (we speaking of a bug that is 4″ big) on the Goulburn; and only because  Mark was on my boat and said ‘there’s a fish trying to eat a cicada just off your oar’.  I was watching the bubble line along the bank rather than looking back into mid-river and 20 feet of water. Sure enough the fish was ‘just off my oar’ – read 5 feet off it and it took three attempts for the plucky brown to successfully drown the cicada. Understandably the fish never returned to eat the fly that we cast over its last known position a further 54x. No doubt it was on the bottom of the river with a Mylanta saying ‘why, why, why – never again’ like a relapsing alcoholic waking in an alley; morning sun in their eyes and bird-cage mouth.

So we played around with moving the fly a lot of the time when the regular methods failed. Using such large, high riding patterns constructed from foam, we were able to get sneaky and let them float down into likely spots ahead of the boat, allowing them go deep under canopies and twitching them out before they fouled up; only to have large browns come out from the cover and smash or sip them out in the main river current. Sometimes up to 5 metres away from where their curiosity was first piqued. Extraordinary behaviour for otherwise wily and picky Goulburn River brown trout.

erhan-01

This leads to the most amazing thing I saw this season. I had backed the drift boat into a log jam in a huge off-river bay to have a break for some lunch. We were in the shade of a tree, a patch of dark not much bigger than the boat, yet the water that surrounded us was in full sunlight. I stood while the guys relaxed and immediately spotted a great brown of about 3lb cruising the edge of the bay to the rear of the boat. After watching it do a few loops and coming as close as six feet from us on the nearest pass of the boat, we bow and arrowed a fly out in the path of the fish’s beat and waited.

A minute later the fish ate the fly, less than a rod length from the back of the boat, we hooked it and played it for a few seconds before it came off. We watched in horror as the fish tore off, heading back up the edge of the river, 100 miles an hour, clearly irritated. But he didn’t go. He was clearly disturbed but he did another pass of the bay  at 3x normal speed and then began rising. We immediately ‘bow and arrowed’ the ‘Serbian Ant’ less than a rod length off the back of the boat into the spot where we had hooked and dropped this fish only a minute earlier, and waited. Within 15 seconds the fish was back, he nosed the huge dry in 2 feet of still water. I mean he nosed it.  Three to four seconds. One inch away. Pectoral fins flared like some sort of ‘trout-brakes’. Then he ate the #6 dry fly constructed from 2/3 of a standard thong.

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You don’t see this sort of thing every day and it really goes hand in hand with my earlier summation of how good the cicada fishing was this past summer. It was especially exciting to see this happen less than a rod length from us, and to be able to share it with other fly fishers only made it that much more special.

Anyway that’s enough of the reminiscing and my self-centric take on season 2013-2014! It’s time to let you know what is going on here for the coming few months.

1. Our cottage is available at $150/night with access to our lakes included.  It sleeps 4-5 people and includes fishing privileges (lakes not stream) on the day of arrival, while staying with us and on the day of departure. It is extremely comfortable, private and great value. Take a break from the Melbourne winter, bring the family or a couple of mates along and have a fish. There are plenty of trout feeding in all our lakes right now, with midge hatches bringing fish to the surface and plenty of baitfish active in the margins.

Fantastic photo of our place taken by Pictures by Paul &Thomas Bitmatta.  http://www.youtube.com/user/BMSWEB

Fantastic photo of our place taken by Pictures by Paul &amp;Thomas Bitmatta. http://www.youtube.com/user/BMSWEB

2. We are about to finish off the works to our pumps and man-made stream and will have it back up and running shortly. Basically we are looking at 25k worth of upgrades in order to get our place functioning as we would like it. Rather than repairing the old pump back at the rear of our property, we have taken the opportunity to fix the much larger one near to our north-west boundary. This is a long-term solution to a problem that has been in the too hard basket since we purchased this place and began cleaning it up.

This pump picks up a much greater volume of water, the shaft is set in deeper and it will allow us to put several million litres  through our place in a very short space of time. On top of this we are laying a pipe from this new intake to bring cold, Goulburn water directly into the main lodge lake, meaning that it will now easily be controlled and maintained right through summer. This will result in great fishing throughout the hottest months of the year.

Our ad from the last FlyLife. You can't seriously think we would give away all this info without asking you to read about our latest offers.

Our ad from the last FlyLife. You can’t seriously think we would give away all this info without asking you to read about our latest offers.

Most importantly of all is that this pump is right at the head of our man-made creek and so we can also divert water into the creek at the flick of switch. This will be done on a daily basis to keep it flowing, and for those wishing to fish it, for which there will be a day-fee for its exclusive use.

From a commercial perspective this  is a great thing as we will have a man-made stream open all year around (click here to see photos from when we first dug it out), a stream that will fish even when floods affect the other rivers in the area and where we can manipulate the water temperatures (either pump in water from the river or from the lake in winter if we want warmer water) to suit our needs. As well as this it will give us somewhere to teach streamcraft on long weekends when the area is overrun with visitors!

malcolm-04

On a personal level I am super-excited to begin pumping on evenings during the first hatches of spring. We will be seed our creek with bugs very quickly and adding some night pumping during the invertebrate drift will help as well. We will document all of this with numerous blog updates including plenty of photos, as I’m sure that many of you out there will be interested in the project as a concept.

3. We are running a special off-season rate for the duration of the closed season. The 3-FOR-1 deal has proved to be exceptionally popular and means that you don’t have to wait until a scheduled beginner’s workshop in order to derive the same sort of value that you would when joining a scheduled workshop.  Being able to split the single person rate 2-3 ways makes fly fishing lessons accessible to anyone and we are pleased to be able to offer this special rate until the end of August.

3for1

4. We have a number of trips coming up; from Montana in mid-July to Patagonia in December to New Zealand January through March. See our Upcoming Events Page on our website for more information.

5. Our online shop has been in dire need of a facelift for years and it is finally happening. For several months I have been tinkering with different formats (coding and db’s – oh joy!) and layouts and I am finally making some progress. This is all about making it easier for you, our customers to use, and while we will include more fly patterns in the revamped site, our overall product range will be carefully selected based on both quality and the value to you, our customers.

As always our honest advice is free and available always. If we think it’s worth your while buying elsewhere in Australia or directly from the USA; we will continue to direct you to the store that gives you the best value.

rainbow

6. There is a lot more I wish I could share here but we are still in the planning stages with some things still being decided. While I cannot divulge much at this point in time, it should be noted that we are setting about changing our business model and hopefully making our wonderful facility and staff more accessible to everyone.

As I get a little older and begin to reflect on where we are/where we’re headed, I really feel that fly fishing in this country is a little too solitary, in the sense that many anglers do not feel as though they are part of a larger community of fishermen. In other parts of the world, particularly the places we visit in Montana, there really is a sense of community. This is something we would like to foster the development of. Not as a profit making exercise, as to be honest I see quite a bit of work/effort being involved on our part and not a lot in the way of a tangible return. I/we feel that fly fishing in Vic needs something like this. A place where we can come together to express ideas, develop skills and build networks of people who care about our natural resources.

A Goulburn edgewater riser  from this afternoon.

A Goulburn edgewater riser from this afternoon.

Front and central to this theme will be a lot of free events in our store, with the first of them set for the Opening Weekend of the trout fishing season on Saturday 6 September. Keep watching the blog for more info.

7. Our End of Financial Year Clearance Sale is still on until June 26th. Click here to see what’s left.

Have a great break from the trout if that is what you’ve chosen to do. If you are an addict, enjoy fishing the lakes and any travel that you are fortunate enough to do. Keep watching this space and on Facebook for updated trip reports from Montana and also for the odd update from our lakes/other local waterways.

Exciting times ahead and we look forward to sharing the journey ahead with all of you that read our blog.

Cheers
Antony

P.S. Apologies for typos, grammatical errors, unfinished thoughts or general wafting. I am tired and still have to organise a Powerpoint Presentation for our trip to the VFFA later today. I guess I am going to get to watch Australia V Holland after all

27
May

River Conditions as of nightfall Tuesday 27 May

Rubicon: Waste of time
Stevenson: Forgeddaboutit
Acheron: WTF are you stooopid?
Smaller Streams: Great for kayaking but B.Y.O. EPIRB, Life Insurance and brown undies
Goulburn: best of a bad bunch but is still worth fishing. Low levels = easy wading and there will be some excellent streamer fishing in the discoloured water. Come further up-river to find the clearest water. Fish the slow pools with large, dark wets and articulated streamers. Black is the new black when it comes to fly selection. Not looking too bad for the next week with Saturday the most likely day for rain and pretty good conditions for the rest of the time. Duns will return in the next night or two. Only saw a few this evening.

I’ll update soon with more info and plenty of photos. In the meantime be thankful for this rain given the warnings emanating from all those in the know vis-à-vis  another possible El Niño belting to come. We need to store as much water as possible in the coming months given the predictions being made.

 

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