Hi guys,

Most anglers enjoy finding new water or exploring somewhere with a friend that they have not been before and I am no different. Anglers let me know of special little creeks or rivers every week but the biggest hurdle I find is actually finding the time to get away and have a look at them. There is something special about walking up a river not knowing what is just about the next corner and trust me you can end a long bloody way up them some days especially as all the water looks so appealing.

I have had a few days free over the past week so decided to visit my Nan in the home and spend a night away in Napier getting a feel for some local beers at the wharf area. The night was a goody but the day that I had organized fishing with my mate the next day was even better. Holding a heavy head high we had a fairly early start and headed into the ranges to a small river in which I don’t even know the name of and apparently my mate did’nt either but I think he was just telling me that. I was told the fish were big, spooky and we were’nt allowed to cast until we found a fish which was on the chomp. This sort of angling is good for me as the Tongariro can create some bad habits which simply don’t work in the smaller, clearer creeks with resident fish.

We came across no foot prints all day apart from mobs of goats which seemed to be on every corner feeding on the new spring grouth of the blackberry. The river was fairly clear and we could see into much of the river but we still managed to spook the first three fish we came across with rough walking and not looking properly.

Our game had to be better and our approach had to be smoother a little like me on the dance floor the other night but that I might not ever get right it seems. Finally we found a very good fish feeding deep in a bouldery run, a big brown. I watched him for several minutes before running the dry and dropper over him with no movement towards my fly at all. I had my mate still high on the hill spotting for me and he said he was still there but the fly may have not got down quick enough. A quick fly change and first cast my mate was yelling to set hard unfortunately this fish jumped straight away and spat the hook instantly leaving me a little disappointed as it may have been 7 or 8lb? We blamed each other and settled that it may have been the last rum we had the night before.

The next pool up I spotted another good fish feeding hard and was not letting much go past without having a look at it. A change of rig slightly and I threw the dry and dropper his way which got instant attention but a strong refusal on the dry luckily he must have just seen the nymph which was good enough for him as he slashed at it before it left the run. I hooked the Rainbow but for some reason it all let go within a few seconds . Upon inspection the bloody hook had straightened which I threw at James as he had tied it on from his box-apparantly it was one that he had straightened out before-who needs mates eh.

As we wondered up the beauty of the river masked the fact that we had not landed a trout between us with awesome cliffs, clear pools with wonderful holding water and bubble lines which screamed trout. It’s nice to know there are fish out there that are smart and wont get caught every time as they start to mean alot more to you if you have to work for them. I would assume there would be about a fish per km which is low for the North Island but the size makes up for their numbers.

Typical of these little rivers and maybe why there are not huge amount of trout  we saw massive Eels cruising the deep slow water. I was always under the impression that Eels came out at night but in recent years have seen big numbers during the day especially in these more remote rivers. They look like they were also nymphing amongst the rocks just using a more slam and grab tactic instead of waiting for the nymphs to dislodge?

James then went onto hook into  a trout which we were so close to landing but with so much line out and backing going around the boulders it was not long before the 4lb tippet gave way and we were again left without a picture. We landed no fish for our day on the river and actually only hooked 3  or 4 fish for the day but I still felt that I had achieved alot and had a great day out somewhere which I had’nt been before. The biggest thing for me was that I had again learnt a few things by doing this trip, simple things like being stealthy, limit false casting and make the first one count!!

As you can see from the pictures what an amazing little river to be on and the weather was that nice I wore shorts all day. Sand flies were having a field day for a while but with a high level of alcohol in the blood I think most of the sand flies in Hawkes Bay had passed out by the second pool. The blackberry was unforgiving all day and I realize why the goats are so plentiful in these areas, ouch!!

Tight lines

Andrew