Hi guys

Well we are well into the winter fishing period now, in fact we are spring so we should be seeing all things brightening and breeding including the fish. The Tongariro in my experience should get going anytime now and become the go to river for the next few months. My favourite – the Hine has slowed down with silver running fish and is only holding dark trout which are well into spawning mode now. The Hine is still a great spot to be if it just sport you are wanting with scenery to just die for, it’s a real gem for Taupo.

I have seen various photo’s and read the odd report of silver fish filtering through the Tongariro , hopefully this remains the same with the odd large push as we get closer to November December as this will leave many fish in the upper section going into the opening on the 1st of December. There was a spectacular trout caught and released from the troll hole in the last few days , big shoulders, fresh colours and looked well over 7lb-these are the fish we want eh!!  I think the Tongariro can be described as a real mixed bag over the last few weeks with half the anglers saying things are hard and some anglers all smiles with their efforts. I’d like to know the % of anglers that are saying things are great that are only fishing under the bridge, this piece of water certainly gives up some of the best fish on this river .

Conditions for most rivers are again low and clear and even the lake can do with a big top up going into what will be another hot dry summer. I have again been using only natural patterns really and have not really used the traditional winter glo bug. While fishing small water I  have tried to use short leaders , light flies and small indicators which has resulted in more direct hook up’s, the Hine is perfect for this in many cases. Larger rivers like the Tongariro you may still need substantial leaders but stick with the small naturals such as Shane’s line of Hairy Reapers(good breeding) or simple tied Green Caddis etc, keep it simple.

Lake fisherman have been doing very well. Deep trollers with lead lines are doing the best while trolling 10 colours out the back with a cobra attached. Most fisherman finding the type or colour of lure does not really matter which indicates the fish are HUNGRY which Im not sure is a good thing. Matt fished most of the day last week and boated 20 fish and would not have got one over 4lb, other anglers report the same results. Smaller fish in the 2lb bracket are in good condition and will be good fish in the near future if they continue finding the food source, flesh is bright and fighting qualities are all there.

Im looking forward to backcountry this summer, its so close I’ve even been checking what flies I have left over from last season and where Im likely to hit the most this season. I love taking clients into these areas , sometimes one fish a day is enough for some anglers as the experience and the journey is worth the effort alone. Areas of interest to me will be Whanganui, Whakapapa, Lake O, Waipunga, Mohaka, Repia to just name a few- here’s hoping for low water and hot days to get the critters on the top.

Tight Lines

Andrew Christmas