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Expect a busy weekend.
Tongariro up ... with more rain to come.
A better week.
Rain on the way.
Right place...right time.
Mission accomplished...just.

Right place...right time.
Fri 4th May, 2018

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I've found the fishing much better the last couple of days. But its still very much a case of right place, right time. And it also helps if you're prepared to vary your tactics and approach, to mix things up a bit.

I fished with Grantly yesterday and we headed up the TRB above Red Hut with five rods between us all rigged slightly differently ... and it paid off.

The upper river always looks magnificent, especially on a crisp, clear late autumn morning. And because things have'nt really kicked off yet, angling pressure is still minimal on the Tongariro. In fact the car park was empty when we set off and when we returned.

Nowadays the river seems to take longer to clear after rain. I don't really know why but I think it may have something to do with that orangey brown sludge that was brought down a few freshes ago. Its still visible along the margins and is extremely slippery underfoot. But as we made our way over the bridge the water clarity was better than when I last fished.
Even when the river's busy some of the less often used tracks become overgrown or blocked with fallen trees and it was just as well Grant had packed his Rambo machete because we had to hack a path through in a couple of places during the day.

Those of you that visit Creel will know how keen he is on Czech and tight line nymphing and as I was landing a rainbow in our first port of call a glance further downriver revealed that Grant was obviously hooked up to something much better.

After a lengthy scrap on the 4wt "Rambo" took this pic of a cracking, well marked brown which had a tail like a shovel. "First blood" of the day ... excuse the pun.

Like most anglers both of us have our favourite "little spots" and methods on different parts of the river and as we fished our way up we continued to catch a fish or two. Grant scored another slightly smaller brown followed by some good conditioned rainbows. And by the time we headed back in the afternoon it had turned out to be quite a good day for us.
In the sunny conditions small flashback nymphs accounted for over half the fish but Grant also did well with a "Simons Ugly" which a lot of people swear by as a bomb.

Having a selection of flies will improve your chances on the Tongariro, particularly when its tough going. Remember you're not always fishing for gullible fresh run spawners and they soon learn whats on offer in the river. Just about all the rainbows we caught were what you'd call "residents" and had been in the river sometime.

There's no need to carry thousands of patterns either. A selection of tried and trusted favourites in different sizes will suffice ... it will pay off.

I almost forgot ... If you use the Blue Pool access track you're bound to have noticed the huge crack on the edge of the road about half way down towards the car park. It isn't a problem at present but its been steadily getting worse for months and is worth keeping an eye on, particularly if we get really heavy rain.

In recent years he entire track {from the entrance south of the Poutu Bridge to the Blue Pool car-park itself} has been dogged with maintenance problems and this could turn out to be quite serious.

Tight lines

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