Posts Tagged ‘Bob Wyatt’

The Fly-Fishing Connection…

January 26th, 2016 No comments

You’d think after 5 years writing this blog that I’d be somewhat computer literate. Well, far from it. I just wasted 3 hours of my life trying to make photos smaller on Iza’s Mac (2mp or less to fit in wordpress blog). With Windows you just select the pics, click “make smaller” and its done. On the Mac you have to select the photos, export them (fuck knows where they go) then make them smaller after you’ve found them, then import them, then export them back to iphoto but they wont make it there, they’ll get lost on the way,  then do some other shit to them, then you loose them, then you try to do it all again a few times before giving up and without pulling out whats left of my hair. I did well not to make bits of this computer while the steam was leaving my ears and curses hurtling from my mouth.

Firstly, to all of you who enjoy my ramblings on NZ fly-fishing, sorry its taken me so long to put this together. Life got away on me a bit leaving me little time to write. Which is a good complaint I guess!

I had a great 2 day mission with Bob Wyatt and Robbie Mcphee a good while ago now. It was weather for waders, freezing cold mornings and lots of rain but the sun eventually made an appearance. We all caught fish on a range of tactics. We spent the night in a farm cabin, no better place to catch up. A glowing fire, good food and few beers with good friends is hard to beat, to be honest I think the fishing came second.

The house in Cromwell has been a hive of activity for the passed couple of months with friends coming and going, mostly flyfishers but not all. My old friend Sean stayed for a few days. The fishing was tough then but we managed a few good fish. Then Nico arrived, Nico’s first fish on fly was an artic char on Lough Inagh in the west of Ireland a few years ago. What are the odds? They are a rare wee fish indeed in Ireland. We had a couple of days on Dunstan and he managed a couple of good fish on fly. That was Christmas day, we kept one to eat raw as a christmas dinner starter, it was fantastic! Mark Adamson was next, we had a feckin tough day on a west coast river where we managed one decent trout. The surroundings were spectacular and the sun was shining which made a tough day a little better!

Since then we’ve had Fergal Cormican, another friend from Ireland come and stay for a few days as he learned how to take on NZ rivers and lakes, we fished Lake Dunstan around Ranfurly for a couple of days where we found a few good stretches of the Taieri and its backwaters.. A great training ground for both river and still water angling.

I recently had a day on the water with Dean Whaanga up the country a bit. We checked out a truly spectacular valley to see how a recent flood might have reshaped the river and surrounding creeks. We found a few fish but they were difficult. At that time fish seemed to be difficult everywhere, possibly due to falling barometric pressure, I’m not sure.. I don’t pay too much attention to that kind of thing because I’ll be going fishing regardless! We landed a couple of fish and had a great day on the water. I met Dean when I first came to NZ in 2002 at my good friend Bob Tofflers house, we all enjoyed a feed of mutton birds! I’m delighted to have fished with him finally. It was a pleasure to see a fella with 30 plus years of guiding under his belt has not lost any enthusiasm for fishing during his time off..

The most recent visitor was Con O Flynn, also a friend from Ireland. We had 2 big days on the river together, I took him into one of the toughest gorges I know of. I asked him was he fit! He said yes and he looked like he could handle it so off we went.. Theres a point in the gorge where you need to get out and drop back in farther up. We got to that point and climbed out, then climbed back in. No problem. I looked for my usual crossing point to continue up river and I could see it, I just couldn’t get to it. I could see another crossing a little farther down river which looked easy so I decided on that one rather than going up river to climb down to my usual crossing. This turned out to be a mistake, Con took a dip in the river as he crossed and then going up on the other side of the gorge proved quite difficult because of a crevice keeping us from my usual way, we had to keep going up! We got there in the end and then we could continue up river with only a couple of minor climb-outs to get around bluffs. We found a few fish but not as many as I was expecting, saw a couple of brutes. Con landed a solid brown and hooked a much larger fish which straightened the hook. It was really great to bring a fella like Con into a special place like that. Win, loose or draw its a great place to be alive as long as your the type of person who can appreciate it for what it is. We left it all on the river. See you next time, Con! We have some unfinished business with NZ trout.. Thanks for everything!

I’m expecting a visit from Ken Whelan any time now, he’ll be passing through with his Brother, Brendan on their way south. I expect we’ll fit in a mission at some stage, David Lambroughton will also join us hopefully.

Between friends coming and going, Fly-fishing and trying to set up my guiding career things have been very busy indeed.. Long may it last!

Tight Lines Eeryone.. A little tip for you all, 18 is the new 16!



Let battle continue…

October 1st, 2013 4 comments

My West Coast plans were dashed last Saturday morning when I got to lake Hawea and saw a “Haast Pass Closed” sign… I should have checked first I suppose, but I heard during the week that it was open so I didn’t question it. It really knocked the wind out if my sails. Where to go instead? I tried the makerora mouth but struggled to cross a shitswamp. My heart was simply not in it and this was enough to deter me. I looked at The Neck on Lake Hawea on the way back but I was not in the form for blind buggering. Sight fishing was out of the question with the conditions. I hit the Clutha Channel where it enters Dunstan on the way home. I gave in maybe 40 minutes and I’d had enough. It’s funny, I had my heart set on the coast and nothing else would do.

On Sunday I had a productive day sorting out my tying kit and tying a few flies for the rivers, many of which are open again today. Today being opening day is a big deal for the many who put the rods away for the winter. For me, and a few others around here like me, the season just continues. I didn’t miss a weekend on the water all winter! Maybe one come to think of it..

Have a great 2014 season everyone.. I plan to go harder than last year.


Cicadas to sea-runners to speeding tickets….

February 7th, 2013 No comments

Last Saturday Mike Bonn and I took the Wakitipu Anglers Club boat out on Lake Wakitipu to target Cicada feeders. I have not fished for trout feeding on Cicada’s very often but one observation I made in the past stud true on the day. The trout were sipping down the big morsels like little mayflies. There were very few smashing rises, In fact,we only saw about 10 free risers all morning. If they were smashing them we’d have seen heaps! They were clearly zoned in on cicada’s because our big, shop bought cicada patterns were all they wanted. I have often heard about fish hitting cicada’s very hard but I have rarely seen it happen. The truth is that once a cicada lands on the water he’s not getting off it again. Trout zone in on this behaviour after eating a few and instinctively adapt their behaviour to match ( I hope I worded that correctly Bob Wyatt, feel free to comment!!) Cicada’s range widely in size and colour so maybe they only sip down the medium sized grass green ones!! Who the hell knows.. Regardless, Mike and I had a great few hours on the water. Afterwards I went to James and Caroline Wilkinson’s Wedding.  Thanks James and Caroline.. Great fun had by all! (apart from getting a speeding ticket while trying to keep up with Jeff on the way the the river the next day!)

Wednesday, Waitangi day. No work so Jeff Forsee and myself set out to catch a big searun brown. I’m tired now so I’ll keep this short! Basically, Jeff had to open about 15 gates before we got to where we wanted to go, then a 300m climb into a gorge, then about 5ks of very rough gorgy terrain to get a shot at a handful of fish. They were tough! We each had a 7lber. I lost 2 more one of which I reckon was 9 plus. Then the walk out. Down the river first then up a stream, then up and over a mountain, down a gorge, and back out the same gorge to find the truck a few k’s down the track. Fitness helps about as much as stubbornness! My knee gave up but still worked. Thankfully it’s almost fine today but my legs are sore! Jeff said his were too and Kanai is still asleep. Was it worth it?…  Fuck yes.




A big New Zealand Brown to end the season…

May 7th, 2012 No comments

The end of the season was a thoroughly enjoyable fishing and social event! Superb fishing, lots of fish, good friends, plenty good food and drink and a fantastic “Trout Cottage”  to kick back in when evening arrived. From about April 20th to 30th myself, Chris Dore, Simon Chu, Bob Wyatt, John Mclean, Quenten Donnelly and Mike and his brother James Wilkinson fished the Mataura nearly every day. For the most part it was challenging and that is a good thing! There was an intense hatch every day for 1.5 to 2.5 hours and the bulging rise forms made it clear to us that the fish were taking beneath the surface. Emergers were the way to go. We fished the glassy water during the rise because that’s where the fish were. Fishing glassy, flat calm water is never easy. An up stream cast to a rising fish simply didn’t work! It was essential to lead the fish well with a cast 90 degrees to the lie of the fish. Fine tippet, long leaders, reach casting, neat distance presentation casting and slack line presentations made the difference between a good day and a great day! We all caught lots of fish and probably averaged about 8 or10 each per day, mostly around 2lbs. Quality fishing!

Chris and I fished together on the last day of the season. We got off the Mataura and went in search of a big fish. We found a  few in a river that was rising and colouring after rain and snow but they were chasing each other around, pairing up, anxiously moving around pools, even spawning! Some appeared to be feeding and I got one of those, an absolute cracker and the perfect end to the season on a freezing cold, wet and windy day.

On May 1st Chris, James Wilkinson and I went to the Oreti bike track hearing. Fish & Game spoke very well and the witnesses they had expressed many excellent points. I had an opportunity to speak myself so I did. Many submissions were read out, All but 2 strongly opposed to the track running alongside the Oreti River. Those who spoke in support of the track really had no point to make at all. If the 2.5m wide track goes ahead it will be a travesty and a wrong doing. Most people oppose the track so lets see what happens next. Thanks to all of you who wrote to the editor of the Southland Times. It’s still not too late! 250 words or less..


Big fish hunting and a bed for my truck!

April 20th, 2012 No comments

The end of the season is approaching and with all the fishing opportunities available to me I find myself going back to the rivers where a really big fish is always on the cards. A few days ago Simon Chu and I teamed up to fish together for the first time. We have know each other for a long time but not very well. One learns a lot about a fella during a day on the river together and now I know Simon a lot better and I look forward to fishing with him again. Not all anglers are compatible on a river. For example, some anglers move quickly and others slowly. A quick moving angler coupled with a slower moving angler means one or both anglers will get frustrated. Its important that both anglers fish at about the same pace and so work as a team, sometimes spotting fish for each other. Both Simon and I waste no time on the water.

Over the next few days I hope to catch up with my good friend Bob Wyatt. Bob has just completed his latest fly fishing book which should be on the shelves any day. I’m proud to be in it! Chris Dore and I will fish together one day and hopefully Chris, Simon, Bob and Myself will take on a river together. two up two down I expect.

Sean is heading back to Tassie in a few days so we won’t be fishing together for a while. He’s off to Invervagas for a farewell root but we may have a few beers on Sunday night. If not, All the best mate!

Sleeping in the truck has been uncomfortable lately so I went to the skip and got some ply and bits of wood to make a proper bed that I can stretch out on. I’m off the The Warehouse soon to get a mattress for it. Roughing it doesn’t have be rough!

Enjoy the photo’s! My big fish hunt continues…

Stuntman Ronan..