I have walked the Waitahanui quite a few times over the past two weeks, going into the middle reaches and walking up to Reids or Gordon Williams. I am really worried about the fact there are so few trout in the system. All the anglers I came across were in dismay. At this time of year the river should be full of trout. Older ones coming back out and fresh ones entering the river, however this year it’s all but empty. I’m holding out on the fact we haven’t had a decent Westerly and when that happens the river better have some fish in it! The Waitahanui is very low and crystal clear, fish the deeper pools and make sure you fish it deep at some stage. Try small hair and coppers or Flash back PT’s if the sun is out. I have found that in September a Nymph with red in it works wonders, especially in the Nui. It is why I developed the Red Beastie and I’m really pleased with the results. Have glo bugs in your box and definitely put them on if casting to a fish and all else has failed. When its low like it is I use the Black Bodied Reaper as my Dropper. This is a 3.8 Mil Tungsten bead so it will get down but it goes down a wee bit more natural, instead of plummeting to the bottom. A bit of stealth on all the rivers is necessary at the moment as they are all low and clear.
I walked the Hinemaiaia on Monday with Aussie Chris. He demonstrated a form of High Polling and managed to pick up a few fish. His style uses a very thin fly line and a standard leader. Keeping the rod high lessens the resistance and drag and you stay in contact with the Nymphs. It is really good in Riffly water however he also hooked a few in the deeper pools too. I don’t see this as Czech Nymphing, its just another string to your Bow.The thin floating line that he uses is designed to be stealthy and easy to stay in touch with, while in drift. I use something similar when fishing the head of pools, keeping my rod high and only having my leader (which I have normally lengthened for this method) on the water, I use a bit of weight and its more a lob than a cast but it has taken a few fish now and there was no way I would have caught them with traditional Nymphing. Anyway the Hine has still got fish in it but it has been smashed to hell and back by anglers. Its probably because last week it was the only river in Taupo to have trout in it. The Hinemaiaia will drop in trout numbers quickly. There is no way it can stand that sort of fishing without harming the breeding stocks up there above the bridge. You would have to be a blind idiot not to see whats coming there. I hope DOC can see what is going to happen and quickly amend the limit further back towards the Bridge.
Apparently the trout in the Tauranga Taupo are moving through really fast! So if you are not getting onto them, move position. I would like to think that the next time the water level comes up on the TT, it will fill up with trout. I love fishing the Tauranga Taupo when it has fresh fish in it. If the water is perfect, 5.5 and dropping, then the little buggers can sit in the riffly water as much as the deeper pools. I love fishing the head of the Runs in these conditions, they fight like hell on the TT too. So lets see what happens on this river.
The Waimarino is as low as it gets over summer and it is not fishable under these conditions. The trout are super spooky. This is a river that fishes best when up in volume. However the last three seasons on the Waimarino the runs have become less and later. This is one that I am positive gets poached and its a shame to see the impact this is having. It was smashed by a few nasty floods a few years ago. It seemed the Waimarino was in constant flood at one stage and this must have really hurt the spawning. Whole bends were lost and made dry as the water changed the rivers course. So it is probably a bit of both, but its noticeable. I hope it bounces back.
So I saw the fishing report that DOC released regarding trout size and numbers. The size is down considerably but more important are the fish numbers. These are really low in relation to other years! So I have heard plenty of people saying the runs have yet to come in and I hope that’s true, however i’m seeing empty rivers everywhere, (apart from the poor old Hine) and that is not good for this time of year. Its certainly going to be an interesting few months. I met a client the other day while I was in Rod and Tackle picking up some goodies. Matt has a brilliant selection of fly tying goods, lines, rods and pretty much anything fishy. His prices are excellent too. Rod and Tackle are on the corner down by the lake. Anyway I digress, Bill told me he had an excellent day on the Tongariro, with Peter Fulton. If Bill can catch them they must have been in good numbers So once again if you are not hitting the odd fish then move section on the Tongariro. As I say at this time of year the Red Beastie is a brilliant little fly, especially in the faster water below Red Hut.
So its a wait and see stage at the moment. We are due a wee bit of rain on Friday but I don’t know if it will be enough to alter the River levels. If and when it does I hope the rivers full up and we have a great end to a fairly dismal season.