Thank you to Richard from Two Mountains Guiding for the following images and story.
Spring time is a magical time to be on the Tongariro River.
A peaceful stroll through bush coming alive with new growth, listening to tui’s and having fantails accompany us along the path, jumping out of our skin when two kereru (which we hadn’t noticed) launch out of a tree right next to us! It’s all part of the experience.
Coming out from the bush and our first view of the river, we can see quite a distance up and down and the scenery is stunning but hey it always is, its the upper Tongariro, it always looks amazing. But guess what…there’s not another angler in sight, that’s what happens when 1 October comes around.
The weather is heating up, might be time to try a little wet wading….maybe give it another week or so. The water levels have lowered and visibility is fantastic, the fish are here and in numbers that you rarely see anywhere else.
Staying back from the edge, the first run is broken water and it’s not as easy to pick out the darker shapes. The first cast lands on the edge of the main flow, dry fly drifting nicely, looking good….dip, nymph is taken, a cracking fight from a recovering fish. The tone is set for the day (hopefully!).
Other runs are full of dark shapes that we can see move to intercept our nymphs, never mind the pools where visibility can be good enough to see the white jaws open to take the nymph! Even one or two come up for the dry which is a bonus that will over the coming months become more anticipated.
I’m guiding Gary and Suzanne from Wellington. They land well into double figures and lose about the same, but these fish fight hard. It’s pleasing to see their reaction when we reach a section of river with about 20 fish in shallow water, perfect visibility in the sunny conditions.
I have a great day and they tell me they have had their best day’s fishing ever, which makes my day even better. They were that nice they even wanted me to show them how it was done at one spot which was great….its sometimes torture seeing all those fish and not fishing!