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About us

Our aim at Upstream Flyfishing is to make travel as seamless and enjoyable as possible.

Our numerous trips to these far-flung destinations mean we are well versed in the challenges that can arise. We can quickly and efficiently remedy these to ensure our guests are stress free and get to focus on what they came to do: FISH!

Justin Kemp

Fishing is something I have always enjoyed. From the moment I could walk I would accompany my dad on fishing expeditions along the Transkei’s Wild Coast, targeting mostly edibles like Kob and Yellow tail.

Our family was fortunate enough to have a small cottage at Mpame, the famous fishing destination on this coastline. Every holiday was spent there fishing.

Since those early days, I have delved into most fishing practices and have loved them all. That was however, until I hosted a blue water fishing show in Seychelles and was enticed onto the sand flats by my good friend Bob Skinstad. It was at this show that I truly began to understand the cult of fly fishing.

I can honestly say I have not picked up a conventional rod since then and, instead, have been drawn into the exceptional art of fly fishing. I love the skill and technicality of the sport because you never stop learning and improving. I have been fortunate to travel to some world-famous fly-fishing destinations over the years to put my skills to the test.

Salt water will always be my first love and my involvement in the fly-fishing industry with significant travel has meant a steep learning curve on this fishing front. My favourite destination is the Seychelles. Anything can happen at any moment when wading the pristine flats of Alphonse or Cosmoledo – and being out there with great mates makes those moments all the more special.

I have been lucky to travel to are Gabon, Tanzania, Antiqua, Zimbabwe, Bolivia and Angola in search of new and exciting destinations. After vising them myself, I am certain these destinations will be enjoyed by friends and customers for years to come.

Stuart Purnell

Stuart Purnell copy

I was fortunate enough to get involved in fishing from a very young age. I learned from my father and grandfather on the family vacations we took to coastal areas in South Africa.

I’d always throw a line in the water, whether it was in the local lagoon or off the Harbour wall. These moments laid the foundation for my fly fishing journey, and my passion for the sport has continued to grow ever since.

Born and raised in Cape Town, my journey started when I helped to set up a fly fishing club at my school. This led me to take up competition fly fishing and I am proud to have represented the Western Province, Boland and the South African youth teams over several years, fishing across South Africa and the Czech Republic.

I also enjoy sharing what I have learnt from my fellow anglers, especially teaching fly casting and fly tying. I continue to grow my knowledge of fly fishing beyond the point of freshwater fishing. Today, I spend most of my time exploring local saltwater destinations in the Cape or you will find me behind the vise strapping up some tasty flies for the shop.

Andrew Apsey

Andrew Apsey

My introduction to fly fishing started with a first rainbow trout taken from a friend’s farm dam in the Eastern Cape almost 20 years ago.

Since then, I have been obsessed with fly fishing and fly tying – what it teaches you, the places it takes you, and the friends you meet along the way.

Living abroad for several years deepened my passion for dry fly fishing on small freestone streams. These moments led me to two ultimate adventures exploring New Zealand’s South Island for her legendary brown trout and discovering the vastness of the Colorado Rockies to tempt a few colourful cutthroats.

Venturing into Saltwater fly fishing is an eye opener, from chasing giant Tarpon in West Africa to walking the flats of the Seychelles. Fly fishing gets the adrenalin firing, however, I am equally excited about our local saltwater fisheries to target species like Spotted Grunter, Yellowtail, Leeries and Kabeljou.

Whether it’s behind the vise tying flies, talking fly fishing with fellow anglers, or spending time on the water with friends, you won’t find me far from the action.