Sorry for the lack of reports over the past few weeks. I have been reigned in somewhat. That is not to say I haven’t been out.
The weather has finally settled into sunny hot days. It took awhile though and The dry fly action for me has been minimal, until now. Many times I have I heard Cicadas trying to chirp out to friends, just to have a Cold Front come in and stop all thoughts of romance! I pretty much had to use my raincoat from October through to ummm, last week. Some back country rivers had serious water go through them over winter and Spring, washing away everything! Those rivers unfortunately, are struggling a bit to regenerate. Even the Eels aren’t in there, I hate the weather sometimes!
The trout around the central plateau, going through to Napier are in good condition, in general. Angling pressure has been high this season on many rivers. Farmers are not so happy anymore about letting strangers walk across their land, (fair enough too). I have had more Farmers say there is no Queens chain to me this year, than ever. To be honest I have never had a farmer use that phrase, until this year. All anglers should watch access, walking across land you don’t own without permission is rude. I think, (and anyone can correct me by email) that unless the land owner has bought the land all the way to the rivers edge, Queens chain will apply. Of course the only way to prove that to an angler, is to have the ownership papers handy. Since an argument is not really an option, its better to find other entry points and walk the river. Queens Chain is a measurement of 22 yards either side of a river. It;s a bit of a Mine Field TBH.
I had been looking at an area coming out of a Forrest range for sometime. The drive was long and so I picked Alex up at 5.30. We weren’t sure about access and so left early to give us plenty of time to suss it out. We found the river really fast, it looked stunning. We had decided to wet wade, as it was summer, (cough cough) the water was brisk! This stream came out of dense bush and didn’t get to see too much sun on its travels. The access was via a nice gavel bank but the very first pool looked deep and the side we were going to wade was up to my belly button, (on tippy toes too). There was a straight of about 30 meters and then it deepened right up again. There was no way past the straight, it had dense blackberries on either side. Bugger!! I had seen that there was farm land on the true right and I knew Via G/E, that land went down to the river. Now to find a farmer. We drove around and finally found a house, there was even a farmer at the letter box. He informed us the land we had to cross, belonged to the farmer in the house we were standing outside but that this guy was away and so we couldn’t cross the land. he then got on his Quad and drove down the drive way to the house OK!! Not to be beaten we drove back to the river walked up, tore off our tops and shoved them in our packs and waded up the true left, to our chins, at 8 o’clock in the morning! The water was slow moving and so we just kept in contact with the bottom while holding our gear well above out heads. At one stage I looked back to see Alex who is a few inches shorted than me, submerged, with hands held high inching his way toward shallower ground. This picture is his end result, you deserved that one man :). As it turned out all the crossing needed were deep and some were fast and deep, so we came back early this day, happy we beat Mr grumpy Farmer and with a couple of great trout under our belt, in new water.
As the water levels drop off in all the back country rivers and the days heat up, slime will start to build up. Watch the rocks. I was never a believer in walking sticks, I always thought they were for wusses and gave a few friends a good ribbing, when they unfolded them while walking rocks. Yeah well I retract everything I said about them, they are brilliant and because you are not exuding extra effort while slipping and sliding over slime covered rocks, you are much fresher at the end of the day. Fully recommend them
I have fished the Taupo rips over the past few weeks, leading up to the full moon. I managed a really nice 7 pound Brownie one night, but that has been it. Talking to some locals and seeing what was going on for myself, the rips really haven’t fired yet. whether thats the late summer to blame or whatever, the browns really haven’t begun to run. In so saying I fished to a beautiful Brownie on the Waitahanui last week. It must have been 11 pounds easily. It even rose in the water column for my dry fly, (I’m pretty sure my heart stopped for a beat). It then refused my next 1,000 drifts, with everything in my box. There have been some good reports from the lake, (when able to be fished). The trout are in excellent condition, fat with smelt and red fleshed. That is a great sign for the coming winter season. One thing I have noticed is the lack of anglers on the Taupo rivers.
Be safe all, enjoy the hot weather, make the most of it and tight lines.