The weather has been the main talking point amongst anglers this season, with wild storms aplenty. High water in many of the backcountry rivers, and strong winds has made for limited choices at times. However, with the high rainfalls, the rivers have got good flows when fishable, unlike previous years when we have been in a drought situation by now.
The weather patterns have also resulted in many waters not receiving much fishing pressure, which is a good thing. If you strike the conditions right, there have been some great days. We have been catching lower fish numbers than normal, but this has been more than made up for with larger and better quality fish than usual.
The insect life is late this year, but finally the terrestrials are about, and good cicada hatches are being seen in the alpine areas. I’m excited about the remainder of the season, as I think (hope!) the weather will settle down, allowing us to access some more backcountry areas that have been practically unfished so far.
Flys to be using are predominantly dries, with both bush and tussock cicadas working well, along with blowflies. There have been some good mayfly hatches, and Dads Favourite, along with spent spinners are working well on these.
Willow grubs have also been a predominant food source in the lowland rivers, but try not to get driven insane by refusals! They will take with the right presentation eventually!
Nymphs tend to be still mayfly based, with a size 14 beadhead fishing with a size 16/18 underneath.
Below is a nice willow grubbing fish picked up recently.
Good luck and tight lines,