Central South Island Weekly Fishing Report 28 April 2017

This is the last weekly fishing report from me for a while which times in with the end of the summer sports fishing season. 

This coming Sunday, the 30th of April, will be your last chance to fish the majority of our numerous waterways until opening day next October, November or December.

Right: The author with his oldest fish of the summer season.

With a bit of strong wind, sun and rain forecast for the weekend my suggestion is to focus your efforts on Saturday.

River conditions should be good in the low country but those rivers that drain the main divide should receive some rain on Friday and this may affect your fishing.

It could be a bit choppy on the lakes too so if you are in a small boat stick to those sheltered bays.

I had a quick look at the Te Ngawai River on my way back from ranging the canals last Monday.

Compared to a couple of months ago it looks a million bucks.

During summer the low flows and heavy algal growth put a dampener on the scenic values of the river but fortunately the recent floods in river have freshened the place up and its looking as good as I have seen it, off the bridge near Cave anyway.

I might sneak out for a quick fish this weekend, we’ll see, I haven’t quite finished installing the underfloor insulation yet...

I did managed to get out last weekend and was rewarded with catching my ‘oldest’ fish of the season (oldest looking anyway), a 7 pound brown.

I’m guessing from its leathery skin, huge fins and length of its top lip (maxillary) that this thug was a real old-timer.

It had enough weight to call the shots in our tussle but gave up in the end which made it easy to net, quickly photograph and release.

What a great way to end the summer season, and caught on a dry fly, a rare thing for me.

That was all I caught for the day, the other handful of fish I spotted refused everything I drifted past them and were far more interested in snapping at a streamer fly.

There’s a tip for this coming weekend.

They appeared to have the upcoming spawning season on their minds as some fish were chasing each other around the pools and nipping at each other fins.

On reflection of the end of my second season resident in the Central South Island Region I can confidently say that for the hours I put in, I have never caught so many trout.

Maybe I’m just getting better at fishing or more likely it’s just the great trout fishing resource on offer.     

Now, like so many others, I’ll be heading to the canals for some winter season fishing action and all going well I’ll be harvesting one or two obese trout and salmon to feed the family.

I’m yet to crack the code up there and like so many other anglers up there, so far I have only witnessed the catching of the infamous 10-40 pound monsters.

There are also plenty of undersized salmon and small trout getting caught and released at the canals.

So with that in mind a reminder to anglers who intend to release their fish that they must “immediately return it with as little injury as possible”.

Put that in the context of the canals, that means if you catch a fish off the “walls” or bridges you must walk around and land them from the bank.

That means no winding the fish up the walls and letting them fall from a height to release them; that would constitute an offence in the CSI region.    

The canals attract a lot of anglers and if you start to look around the place you will start to find nylon and other items of litter around the canal banks.

A group of keen canal anglers are getting together to do a litter clean up on the 27th of May and have managed to attract some prizes from kind sponsors to encourage participation and spread the message of taking your litter home with you.

To register for the clean-up and be in to win spot prizes meet in the Twizel town centre near Jakes Hardware at 8:30am.

Prize giving will be at 12pm at the Pukaki & Ohau A canals junction. To find out more search “Canals Clean –Up. Group” on Facebook.  

So thanks for reading the weekly reports over the season.

The reports will once again hit your email inbox, the Fish & Game Website, and local papers shortly before the 2017-2018 sports fishing season kicks off on the 1st of October 2017.

Until then you can keep up to date with all things Fish & Game NZ, local and nation-wide by visiting our new mobile friendly website, signing up to our monthly ‘Reel Life’ newsletter, or following Fish & Game NZ on social media platforms like YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

You will find a copy of the regulation guide on our website too, and if you need any clarification give the CSI office a call or email and run your query past one of our Fish & Game Officers.

See you up at the canals this winter. 

Rhys Adams, Central South Island Fish & Game Officer