Weekly Fishing Report – Central South Island - 30-01-2020
On Tuesday this week Hamish Stevens and I flew around the region in a Cessna airplane counting paradise shelduck and black swan.
Here are a few observations from the air.
Right: The Rangitata River mouth on Tuesday the 28th of January-Credit R Adams.
The Rangitata River mouth is roughly central to the river and has a thin spit on the south side beach access.
Take care when traversing this hazardous area, as you can see by the form of the sand, waves have been washing over top of the beach spit and into the lagoon.
Some river access tracks to the mouth and lower river changed in the December flood so take an open mind to gaining access and don’t be surprised if your old favourite track has changed.
A report from Bill and Linda Whipp of the Southside Huts is that ten salmon have been caught on the south side this season and at least six on the north.
As you can see from the photo there are some nice bits of water to fish so good luck if you find the time to have a fish.
Be sure to check the flows before you head out as there was 20mm or so of rain in the headwaters on Wednesday night and the river flow was rising this morning.
The Opihi river mouth was closed on Tuesday and the lagoon about half full.
Since then it kept filling, but the mouth looks to have re-opened on Wednesday night.
With the Opihi River flows being low we are likely to be in a cycle of mouth closure and re-opening.
ECan will be keeping an eye on the closures and when the lagoon levels get too high and risks flooding the huts and farmland, they will mechanically open the mouth.
Our lowland areas are getting very dry and river flows are steadily decreasing and have gone ‘dry’ in areas that normally do, for example the Pareora River at SH1.
The Hakataramea River near the Wrights Crossing Bridge is an example of a section of river about to disconnect.
If you are on a river and find trout stranded in a disconnected pool, please give us a call 03 6158400 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and provide us the details of location, depth of water, and number and size of fish.
We may be able to relocate them to permanent flow.
Relocation isn’t always easy and as a rule the deepest spot must be only about knee deep or less for us to efficiently capture the fish, so be sure to take the time to assess the depths to pass on to us.
Bear in mind, there are still some good fishing opportunities on these low flow waterways where the water flows permanently.
From the air we saw that the ongoing construction of the Alps to Ocean cycle trail continues to provide access options for anglers, most notably on the Waitaki Lakes.
As pictured a section of the track has recently been completed on Lake Waitaki near the Waitaki Dam and provides access to some shallow margins that look well worth fishing.
The final observation I’d like to share from the air is that there is a lifetime of fishing on offer in just the CSI Region, how lucky are we.
If you have a car and a tank full of petrol and moderate fitness there is practically always a sheltered spot with clear water to fish in our vast region.
The weather needs consideration before heading out fishing this weekend.
A westerly front will bring strong winds at times, especially in exposed places in the high-country.
Rain will be limited to the main divide and perhaps southern part of our region on Sunday.
The pick of the fishing weather will be Saturday morning before the wind picks up so get up early and get stuck in.
Tekapo River spilling notice
Genesis Energy advise:
Lake Tekapo is approaching its Maximum Control Level due to a combination of an outage at the Tekapo Power Scheme and recent rainfall.
Genesis Energy will need to release flow from Lake Tekapo along the Tekapo River, via the Lake George Scott Spill Weir. Genesis are anticipating that spill flow could commence anytime from Friday 31st January 2020.
Genesis are intending to fly (by helicopter), the length of the Tekapo Riverbed to warn the public of the anticipated flow, prior to spill occurring.
Take care when accessing river areas in case of flow changes, do not risk crossing any river on foot or in a vehicle if there is a risk of being inundated or stranded if levels rise.
Ahuriri River Jet Boating
Jet Boating New Zealand (JBNZ) wish to advise:
For the months of February to May inclusive, when the river flow at the State Highway 8 Bridge exceeds 20 cumecs, it is possible you may see jet boats enjoying the river between Lake Benmore and the Irelands Road Bridge.
Ahuriri River jet boating requires a permit, which are administered by JBNZ for its members only.
Rhys Adams, Central South Island Fish & Game Officer
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