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The fish are still there...
A tricky week but ...
Mix things up a bit.

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Mix things up a bit.
Fri 3rd November, 2017


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If you haven't been on the river for a few weeks you're going to notice a big difference in the fishing.

With the winter runs well and truly over its certainly become a lot tougher and its time to re-think things a little. This often happens around this time of year ... it is what it is but its one of the reasons a lot of anglers give up on the Tongariro in summer.

I nymphed the usual spots above Red Hut again today and although there are still fish on the redds, the pools themselves were slow going. The few better fish I've seen lately were nearly always caught by wet-liners but unfortunately its not a method I enjoy using. There's nothing at all wrong with it but for me fishing its all about having fun and I've never enjoyed the sinking line.

From now on I nearly always do better fishing the stuff in between . And one nothing looking piece of water I regularly fish with the dry and dropper clearly showed how useful it can be.

Its the type of place that you wouldn't even consider if you were only rigged with a conventional Tongariro setup. In fact a couple of anglers did just that and walked straight past it on their way to a pool further up.

You could use a much smaller indicator and rig it the same way with two flies suspended below. But then the "indicator" wouldn't have a hook in it and would probably be more likely to spook fish in the shallow water than the big dry. So as soon as it became clear they had no intention of fishing it I moved on up and second cast in shin deep water a fish came up and took the dry.

It was by no means the best condition fish I've ever caught ... but on a slow day very welcome.

The next three casts produced two more fish this time on the egg hanging below.

At present whenever you're up this way its still a bit strange looking across the river to an empty TLB. Then the buzz of chain saws in the distance reminds you why. I Ion't know about you I'm but I'm missing all that good water we can't get at. It really cuts down your options at this time of year and I'm looking forward to getting it back.

On a brighter note insect activity is increasing by the day. But I have to say with plenty of spawning fish still in the river I'm taking a few fish on egg patterns. Despite the fact I often team them with some sort of caddis at this time.

We're all aware there are aquatic insects in the river. But how they behave below the surface is not always obvious unless you have specialist equipment to observe them properly.

Most of us rely on information from others who' ve studied them and this is a great little clip on caddis from Ralph Cutter's "Bugs of the Underworld"Caddis Life Cycle. I first put the link on the site around a year ago but its well worth watching again.
So ... not a great deal to report. It has become a little more difficult out there but by moving around and mixing things up a bit there are still fish to be caught.

Summer came and went this week and after two days of heavy showers the river is carrying some color and running at 46 cumecs.

This should liven things up and I wouldn't be at all surprised if a few early browns turned up.

A mixture of sunshine and showers for the week ahead and I have a feeling its going to be a much better week fishing wise.

Be careful out there because there's already a good covering of slime on the rocks and without my third leg I'd have have taken a couple of unplanned dips this week.


Tight lines

Mike
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