North Canterbury Weekly fishing report 28 April 2017
- Richie Cosgrove
Hello and welcome to the final fishing report for the 2016/17 season, as I write this report from the river bank it feels warm with some gusty North West winds.
The forecast is for rain in the main divide this afternoon and tomorrow morning.
Right: Volunteers and Fish & Game staff salvage 49 salmon trapped in pool near Cust.
For the plains there is going to be rain on Sunday with a strong cold southerly.
The salmon rivers are quite low and fishable at the moment but they may come up with the forecast rain.
There should be a window tomorrow morning before a fresh comes through.
My advice would be to get out there and go for it as it is the last weekend of the season.
Remember all rivers will be closed downstream of State Highway One from the 1st of May.
There are still some salmon around especially in the Waimakariri.
All of the foot hill streams have good flows at the moment.
The Ashley is around five cumecs at the gorge and the Selwyn is around 2.5 cumecs at Whitecliffs.
These streams have a nice clear gravel bottom at the moment after the floods from the two cyclones.
The Selwyn has stopped flowing at State Highway One but is still flowing at Coes Ford.
There is unlikely to be any fish in the lower Selwyn until next season.
Other Ellesmere stream such as the Halswell and LII are still well worth a look as fish start moving into these streams to spawn.
Backcountry fishing this weekend will depend on how much rain falls in the area tonight.
Check the rainfall on the ECan website before going this weekend to avoid disappointment.
The backcountry fishing has been good over the last month but it will largely depend on the flows and weather conditions.
It is the last weekend of the season so no doubt a lot of people will go regardless.
Take a variety of gear including light spinning gear if there is a bit of colour in the rivers.
High country lakes maybe worth a look around Saturday evening or Sunday morning in between changing weather patterns.
It looks like there might be a window of calm weather during these times but I am certainly not promising anything.
Stream mouths would be the place to target as fish start to congregate around them for spawning.
Fish and Game staff and volunteers have been salvaging adult salmon today that have been stranded in the Waimakariri due to a change in the water course.
Left: Salmon schooled up in the pool before salvage.
This isn’t a common occurrence but it has happened a couple of times this year.
If you see any fish stranding please contact us.
It is not always possible to save them but we at least want to assess the situation and if possible salvage fish so they can continue on their upward migration.
There will be a couple of Reel Life newsletter through the winter, otherwise the next fishing report will be in late September in anticipation of the next opening.
Until then, tight lines.
Tony Hawker, North Canterbury Fish & Game Officer