October - Fly Fishing in New Zealand
One of my season goals was to catch my first trophy trout of over 10lb. Thinking that this would be a season long endeavour I planned my first opening trip to an area which would hopefully help me on the way and at least give me the chance to practice on a few likely candidates.
After planning for months, I headed north with my mate Dave for a hard-core back country adventure to bring in the new season. However the weather gods had different ideas and decided to pound the whole South Island for opening day, I thought that my dream trip may be over before it began.
Rather than reading about the whole trip, watch the video and see my dream come true!
as the season started to get into the swing of things I decided to hit the road and explore some new waters, this time with just on my lonesome. I setup a bed in the back and headed south for a week, it was still damn cold, windy and snowed on the second night which turned the lower rivers high and dirty
After getting hammer by the weather, I made sure it did not dampen my spirits but instead went on the hunt for more remote rivers that would be less affected by the conditions. I was eventually rewarded with a perfect day of no wind, no clouds and crystal clear water all amongst a magnificent valley. This proved to be one of the best days of my season and defiantly my best on that particular water.
Tips for fishing in October
The first month of the season can be one of the most rewarding. Most fish have gone about their business and been undisturbed for up to 5 months, combined with their desire to recondition after spawning all you really need to do is get your fly in the right place and it’s on. The downside however is the unpredictable and gnarly weather that can come out of nowhere, turning the river to mud and destroying your hopes to even get a cast out.
Here are a few tips that will help your success in early season conditions:
Target waterways that have a smaller catchment area, or areas that provide access to multiple catchments should it all turn bad and you need to seek refuge in a tributary or smaller stream.
Don’t underestimate the weather, even though winter is over horrendous storms and snow are still possible to low levels, you don’t want to get caught out on a bad day unprepared
Fish big, make the most of being able to get out those size #8 - #12 nymphs, these fish will not be as selective early on and it is important to for you fly to be seen in water that may carry some colour or snow melt
Plan a slightly longer trip to allow for bad weather days and/or additional travel to get to those unaffected areas.
Overall October is a great month for fishing in the south and if your willing to adapt and make the most of all situations there are some great fish to be found, they can be as hungry as ever and there are generally less anglers trying to hunt them down.
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