Hi guys,

Well the great winter fishing continues to be really very good and consistent and I think it could be the best year I have seen for the last few years. I have been out with great clients for the past few days and seen some very encouraging fish to come to the net. I must admit I did have one odd hard morning with Allan which somehow scored a blank. I still cant work it out as we had nearly 20 fish the day before and 15 the day after so I’m very confused as why we couldn’t score that morning but I suppose that’s just fishing. All my guiding has been dome on the Hine but I hear the Tongariro is in full swing also and is producing some great specimens.

The angling pressure has been fairly quiet in the mornings but the rivers are filling up in the afternoons with a few more cars parked in the upper river. I have been fishing the lower river in the mornings and slowly moving upstream as the day has progressed picking out my favourite pools or beats as we go. Most of the river has had reasonable trout in it but obviously the higher we go the darker the trout generally become. The best we did yesterday was 6 fish hooked in one run in the lower river which were nearly all fresh so there are still small runs of trout entering the river despite not having long periods of rain or strong winds. The river is still running fairly high and slightly coloured which has just been perfect for nymphing especially with winter glo bugs. As the day goes on I have been trying to fish natural patterns and they have been working best in the faster riffles or while fishing at coloured up jack fish.

The Hine really has been amazing this season and it seems so long ago that you could only ever fish winter runs below the main road bridge. The opening of 2.75 kms above the bridge has let anglers really enjoy this fishery option and get into some interesting productive water. After the last big blow and devastating floods there is no longer many options left below the bridge but what there is generally holds big numbers of trout when they are running through.

The pictures that you are seeing are my clients from the last few days and feature once again Will and Ed who booked another day this week after a great day last week and Manuel who was a first time fly fisherman from Switzerland. Manuel picked up the water loading cast very well and it was not long before he dragged the first of many fish from the lower river. Manuel has fished all through Switzerland using spinners and baits so had a good idea of what size fish they would catch and was blown away by the size of our current wild fish. Ed and Will both fish what they call put and take fisheries in England which are lakes heavily stocked with trout and say they cant compare the two fisheries as our unique trout fishing wins hands down in so many ways. It seems we are also very lucky to fish here for the price we do as the rest of the world suffers huge costs to have the opportunity to fish for trout especially at the chance of catching a wild fish. Fisheries throughout America, England, Australia and Europe also suffer from over fishing and visiting anglers are blown away by the so few fisherman that use our waterways. I suppose it really is a reflection of our population and availability to plenty of outdoor activities that maybe keeps the numbers of anglers down, though somedays you would think the Tongariro was the only river in New Zealand.

I will have the next couple of days at home paying bills and tying flies as the Hine has really taken it’s toll on my precious fly box but I will be back out with return client Mark on Saturday for the full day so hopefully will have something positive report early next week. I’m not sure how much longer the smaller rivers will continue to fish well this winter so best get in and make the most right now.

Speak soon

Andy