After 5 months of ‘look but don’t touch’, on Wednesday the 2014/15 river season opened and I was finally able to fish my local rivers again. Good mate and guide Craig joined me and around mid morning we headed to a stream just a few minutes’ drive from the lodge.
It didn’t take long to be reminded of what we’d been missing. As we walked down the steep slope to the river – running high but very clear and fishable – the sun lit up the water so well we could already make out the first fish. It turned out that there were several good trout in that one pool and we caught and released four of them.
That start set the pattern for the day. There were so many fish to cast to, that Craig reckoned we covered more ground chasing hooked fish than walking up the river! Not surprisingly, indicator nymphing was the most successful technique, with most trout taking a small unweighted PTN or similar off the back of a black-beaded tungsten nymph. A couple of fish also took a bigger single stonefly nymph.
By 3 pm there was still enough light to spot, but with around a dozen trout to 5½ lb landed, we decided the best plan was to head back to the lodge for a quiet drink in the afternoon sun. As I write, the clouds are gathering and in place of our 20 C opening day, snow is forecast to fall here overnight! A reminder perhaps that while early spring can turn on some of the very best fishing of the year here, the weather can change in an instant.