As always, I appreciate feedback and fishy stories via email, from weekly report readers who fish the CSI region.
Lance wrote to me last week with news from Lake Ruataniwha.
I’m guessing this was after great fishing reports were presented from nearby Lakes Aviemore and Benmore.
This is what Lance had to say and the photo he shared with us, thanks Lance.
“Camping with the kids at Ruataniwha. While many travel up and down the canals, and some distance, I've blooded the grandkids on fly fishing with 5 browns the last few days no more than 3 mins from camp.
Best at 6.5lb on a small hare and copper in no more than 150mm water.”
Above Right: Henry, Harry and Lance with a golden Lake Ruataniwha brown trout.
From first-hand experience I can say that the Opihi River near Temuka is fishing well currently.
I had a couple of evening hours up my sleeve last week so popped down to the river.
I fly fished three pools, focussing on only the best water and the parts where the glare wasn’t preventing me from spotting.
If I had a full sunny day I’d probably spend an hour or two on each pool.
In the first pool I spotted 4 large brown trout, the first, which I thought I had spooked mooched from the edge to the main current.
I plopped a #18 pheasant tail a metre in front of him fishing downstream on a 45 degree angle.
I wasn’t fishing with an indicator so when I guessed he might of taken it I struck and connected.
5 jumps and a tussle later and I had him in the net.
I thought I could catch a fish in better condition so released it.
The next three fish in the pool were feeding actively but they refused my offerings and eventually spooked.
In the next pool I spotted only one fish but the glare was so bad I walked past the best water.
A different story in the next pool however as I spotted at least 6 large brown trout actively feeding, one on the surface the rest grazing the bottom or chasing down prey.
A fat 4 pounder gobbled my #18 pheasant tail and my family and I gobbled a fat 4 pounder over 3 nights.
The image below show; the fly, my fish and the excellent colour flesh.
A gut inspection revealed that the trout had been grazing on snails in large quantities.
It was a great, short, action packed outing.
The river was in good nick where I fished.
I was expecting algal growth to be annoying being summer, with low flows and warm water, but no such issue for me near Temuka.
Left: fly, fish, flesh.
On the salmon front, we are still awaiting the first decent size run of fish this season in all our popular fisheries.
As of yesterday afternoon the has been 4 salmon weighed-in for January at the Salmon Anglers weigh station at Bill Whipp’s hut on the South side of the Rangitata River.
However, I am unsure how many have been caught on the north side and upriver.
The river was looking great yesterday but a 200 cumec freshe came through late last night (Thursday) so it may be discoloured for the weekend.
We have had first hand reports from a keen eyed angler who works occasionally at the Waitaki Dam; that at least 3 salmon have run the Waitaki River and made it to the dam.
We have also heard a report that a salmon was caught near Duntroon about 10 days ago.
I have heard little news from salmon anglers regarding the Opihi River.
The mouth was blocked for some time but opened up again on Wednesday.
The weather for the weekend will be affected by a westerly front hitting the main divide.
I reckon it will be mostly sunny with gusty winds in the low country but near the main divide in the backcountry expect rough weather.
Keep this in mind if you are heading to the Ahuriri River as this may result in a high and discoloured river.
Once again a reminder for anglers that over this season Fish & Game are undertaking a survey to find out how satisfied anglers are with their upper Ahuriri River and lagoon fishing experience.
Right: The main lagoon in the upper Ahuriri River valley.
Have you fished there recently?
If so, an online version of the survey, can be found on our website by clicking here. We plan to use this information to maintain the experience anglers have always cherished.
Catch you next week