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A little bit of a slow down but ...
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A little bit of a slow down but ...
Mon 31st July, 2017


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A little bit of a change in the weather and the fishing since these pics were taken last Thursday.

Up until then anglers all along the river were reporting plenty of fish in the five to six pound bracket ... most of them ripe hens in fantastic condition.

I spent Thursday on the upper river and had a great time between Boulder Reach and the Fan despite the miserable weather. The whole stretch fished well for most of the day. And surprisingly until I ran into Mike I hadn't seen another angler all day on my side of the river.

Boulder Reach is a pool Mike knows well and it wasn't long before the indicator slid under and he was into one of several solid rainbows he caught in the fading light.

By the weekend it was a return to brass monkey weather. The first few hours standing in the river was bitterly cold and I even had to resort to carrying a flask of my notoriously bad coffee to warm me up.

Mind you the freezing temperatures didn't put anglers off. And as I mentioned last time word is out and the river is the busiest I've seen it for years. I set the alarm an hour earlier than usual and managed to get into Big Bend first but it wasn't long before I had some company.
Despite all the attention most of the pool fished well and there were plenty of hook ups. Not all of them ended with fish on the bank and several fish were lost because they simply weren't "sticking."

Throughout the morning a steady stream of anglers turned up so I decided to go walkabout and try elsewhere.

Not to far away there's a nice shallow run that responds well to the dry and dropper.

Its a spot that doesn't get too much attention and like a lot of the shallower stretches is often ignored by anglers chasing fish during the winter runs.

Globugs suspended under the big dry work well in these places. And is the ideal way to present a fly without spooking the fish with a lump of yarn and heavy bomb.

I spent an hour or two there and caught several rainbows, most of them jacks. Then when things slowed down decided to head back to try Big Bend again.
By the time I walked back things had thinned out considerably and there were only two others fishing the pool.

Its always good to see keen young fly fishermen on the river and sixteen year old Caleb had persuaded dad Mark to drive him to the Tongariro after a successful morning fishing the "Hine".

As we approached he hooked up and Blue shot off to "give him a hand". While they were busy landing the fish I had a natter with dad and it turns out Caleb is not only a mad keen angler but also a dab hand on the vice. Mark explained that only the day before he'd just finished a big order for their next door neighbor.

I didn't get a good look at his fly box...he was too quick for me. But they definitely work and he hooked up a few more times on one of his caddis patterns before they called it a day.

The fishing has slowed a little the last couple of days and a lot of anglers are reporting that most of their catch consists of jacks ... some of them quite dark. This hasn't deterred anglers from trying their luck though and the river was incredibly busy again over the weekend.

More rain on the cards again from tomorrow. This will encourage more runs and ensure another hectic weekend ... set the alarm guys.

Tight lines

Mike
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