Opening Week of the South Island Backcountry Rivers 2013

We encountered a late snow fall towards the end of October along with 3 days of torrential rain, both of which caused flooding in the local rivers and streams. 

Local rivers and streams that opened on the 1st of November were all carrying higher flows and coloured water for the first week or so which meant heavier brighter coloured nymphs were needed to get down and grab the fish's attention. Clients landed plenty of fish on the "the worminator fly", a brightly coloured worm style fly that has a large red or gold tungsten bead tied into the centre and has plenty of movement!  Other flies that are working are the Manic Simons Ugly in chartreuse and red ,a double tungsten beaded nymph with lots of flash and weight great for tying a dropper off as it sinks like a stone.  Also large articulated streamers, again in brighter flashier colours and fished on sink tip lines or fast sinking polyleaders to get down and into the fishy zone.


Kip, from Houston, Texas landed this brown trout in superb condition.
We spied this guy sitting in the tail of a deep run, feeding furiously, so we tied a well weighted green free living caddis nymph under a big dry indicator fly, Kip cast accurately well up in front of the feeding fish so as the nymph would head down into the feed zone... and ... boom! the indicator went down and he was on.
A solid 10 min battle followed and finally we had him in the net.



80 year old Marcia with a chunky wee brown.



We are into the 3rd week of November as I am writing this BLOG entry and the past 10 days have been amazing! We have had little or no wind and day after day of hot weather.
I have already met and guided some great people this past few weeks with some new faces and some old ones too.
I still have a few good dates in January / February if anyone is thinking about a fly fishing adventure here in NZ, so drop me a line with possible dates and hopefully we can make it happen.


We arrived back at the car around 5pm, with a few nice fish under our belts each for the day and feeling pretty content.

We stopped for a quick beer at the local watering hole on the way home to discuss the days events again and to rehash the tales of the ones that got away,all up a very successful start to the 2013/14 freshwater fishing season !

I headed away a few days later with good friend Craig Somerville to another small stream for a couple of days .

The river we headed to had had some serious flooding over the winter months and thus fish population had suffered quite badly, fish numbers were well down compared to previous trips there and probably not in as good a condition .

We still had a great couple of days fly-fishing and landed several good fish each on the first day and had our chances on the second day but didnt manage anything to the net despite several good hook ups things just didnt go our way ..thats fishing I guess!


Again the NILF pattern strikes ! Craigs stunning Brownie .

Again the morning saw smaller lightly weighted nymphs (NILF pattern) being presented to fish feeding on the edges and in the tails of the pools producing results, with one memorable fish dancing on its tail the entire length of the pool once hooked .

And then late morning and into the afternoon some surface action as fish began to feed on emerging mayflies.


Another solid Brown trout to the net

Craig into another good fish on his 3wt

And another fine early season brownie is netted


Back to camp each night and refuel for the next days mission ! Pork and fennel snags ,Morrocan spiced potato chips, minted peas and brown onion and red wine jus ...oh and the odd wee dram for purely medicinal purposes of course .....

Then in by the fire to warm up, make lunches and plan the following days adventure, re -attach leaders and tippet and  sort through fly boxes.

A great start to the 2013/14 fly-fishing with some good mates in some stunning locations, something I really enjoy and dont seem to do enough of these days.

The guide season for me kicks in from late October and is fairly solid through till Xmas, anyone interested in some guided fly-fishing please feel free to contact me and hopefully I can accomadate you with the dates you request.

Have a great season everyone and see you out on the water some time soon !