The Taupo and Central Plateau Trout Fishery for the 2012 and 2013 Summer Season

Shane French /

December 5, 2012


Hi there, welcome to Taupofishing, thank you for stopping by.

I get pretty excited about the Summer months, this is when the best of New Zealand trout fishing comes into its own. Not only is there the chance of a trophy trout but the Scenery in these often remote areas, is very good for the soul! The all round experience of Summer trout fishing is what its all about.

Now that the Taupo Winter Trout Season is over, the rivers entering the lake will empty out. This years spawning trout will migrate back into the lake to eat and be huge again for next Winter. However as the warmer Summer months move in and the insect hatches around the rivers become more frequent, trout will move back into these river systems to take advantage from the abundance of food. All of the Taupo rivers get a hatch in the evening and on a warm summer day you can target the feeding trout with a dry fly, while slowly walking up the rivers. The Taupo Rivers are a great way to hone your dry fly skills, angling pressure is usually light.

I could talk about the Brown trout population in the Taupo Rivers over Summer for hours, so I will have to pull the reigns in somewhat here. However if you do want a Trophy Brown, then summer is the time to be here. This is when these mighty fish enter the Rivers to spawn. Once in they can be a little hard to hook up onto, unless you are fishing early or late in the day, however they do feed off the surface on Cicadas and if you hit that right, then you are in for some incredible fishing. I personally target them as they enter the rivers at night time. Fishing the lake edge where a river enters, late at night, is not for everyone and does require stealth with casting and the ability to work a line in the dark. The rewards can be outstanding and at other times hits come few and far between casts. To take full advantage of this a moonless night is best.

I see the Taupo trout fishery as an all year fishery. If you are here on Holiday and you want to experience a True Kiwi heritage, then this is the place to be.

Me personally, I apply the Back Country Theme to any piece of water outside the Taupo Fishery license. If you fish outside of Taupo you will need a NZ Fish and Game License. All sports stores sell both types of licenses and they are well priced . They also come in Daily, (weekly for Taupo as well) and yearly if you are planning on staying a bit. If caught fishing without one, your in a wee bit of trouble.

The rivers and lakes around the Central Plateau and going over to Napier and Gisborne, offer the experienced fly fisherman some of the best opportunities in the world for Trout fishing excellence. You can expect to see trout in Double Figure Digits, (pounds). The saying “they don’t get to be that big by being dumb” is so very true. The right fly or Nymph, the correct approach and then the all important first cast, these are just some of the ingredients required. One of the main requirements to target these “Big Fish” is to get away from civilization. Whether it’s by Raft, Helicopter, Quad Bike, or just humping it into the back of beyond, the fishing gets better away from the general public.

If you are new to fly fishing and don’t want to go that hard for now, or have family with you,  then all of the public access to waterways has the chance to catch a trout. A dry fly such as the Royal Wulf or Black Cicada pattern will get snatched quickly over summer when the insects are going off. I use a little 5 weight rod,  a short leader and a big Dry. If you can get it on the water  15 to 20 feet in front of you, it will catch trout. On a 5 weight rod the fight from a 1 to 3 pound trout is awesome fun and a great way to introduce your kids to flyfishing. As I say the fishing improves away from these access points. The main thing to remember is ask permission when gaining access to rivers and streams from landowners. Then if the “Queens Chain” rule applies, you can generally move 22 yards either side of the water way. Most of the time, its better to ask :)

All this great fishing is wrapped up in some of the most breath taking scenery on the planet. Sometimes I just sit back and soak it all in. The peace, the freedom and the beauty of it all really is relaxing.  When I am out fishing for myself, I get great delight in thinking, that maybe, just maybe I am the first person, ever to fish this water. To me that is as back Country as it gets!

Be safe while taking part in this great sport. Treat the rivers and rocks with respect and you might just have one of the best experiences possible, while here.

Regards Shane French.