Waitaki River Angler Access now online
- Richie Cosgrove
Trout and salmon anglers now have a brand-new online resource to help them gain access to the Waitaki River for fishing.
A review of angler access on the Waitaki River by Central South Island Fish & Game (CSI F&G) has resulted in the listing of 35 access ways in an online pamphlet.
Right: Fish & Game Officer Rhys Adams with a newly installed angler access sign on the Waitaki River at Stone wall.
The pamphlet is available free from the CSI F&G website and can be downloaded to your smart phone or computer.
The pamphlet is designed to help both local and visiting anglers to access the Waitaki River and enjoy its excellent trout fishery.
Fish & Game Officer Rhys Adams says, “the Waitaki can offer some truly phenomenal trout fishing, but it is one of the hardest rivers in New Zealand to access”.
“The Waitaki is a challenge to access and fish due to its huge everchanging volumes of swift water and the vegetation of willow, gorse, and blackberry that smothers the banks.”
“Anglers who know how to access and fish the Waitaki River catch plenty of trout”
“Our goal with this pamphlet is to provide a large range of access options to anglers, both reliable and ‘adventurous’.”
The pamphlet provides helpful tips about managing fishing trips around flow levels.
Mr Adams says, “knowing the flow level that is suitable for each access point is the key to being successful at the Waitaki”.
The local farming community has been supportive of the process and have worked with CSI F&G to provide access at over half the listed access ways.
Geoff Taylor farms on the south banks of the Waitaki River near its mouth and has provided signposted access for anglers across his private land.
Geoff says, “as long as anglers follow the signage, leave gates how they found them and stick to the access tracks, I am more than happy to allow anglers to cross through my farm to reach the river”.
Mr Adams echoes that sentiment.
“Out of goodwill alone, these farmers are providing access across their private land in some cases. To maintain that privilege anglers just need to be respectful of their property and follow their requests.”
The pamphlet was intended to be printed and made available at sports shops and I-sites in the CSI Region in hard-copy, but that process has been postponed while new access improvement opportunities are being investigated.
Mr Adams said Meridian Energy have offered their support to maintain and enhance angler access on the Waitaki River and that is a game changer.
“With Meridian backing our efforts, we are in a far better position to improve access for anglers.”
Over the coming months CSI will be investigating options to collaborate with Environment Canterbury and farmers to re-establish and maintain historic accessways and put in place measures to maintain their ongoing accessibility.
The online pamphlet can be found at this web address: