TRM inmates report that during the last week they have enjoyed the best fishing so far in 2018.
Based on results from a wide cross section of fishy inmates, TRM concur. The only frustration are the many tales of monsters that escaped at the last lunge. Nearly all have managed to land the bag limit of six every day. i.e. A father and son – school holidays family bonding trip – arrived yesterday afternoon and had landed over their limit (12) in the late afternoon shift. They all report the overall trout condition has been ‘outstanding’…
This is particularly mentioned as during June we were guilty of discouraging several tourist anglers before the main spawning runs had arrived. For any other motel this could be interpreted as crazy? – a very uncharacteristic negative pessimistic response to inmates wanting to visit TRM – but SWMBO knows their fishing time is carefully allocated and does not want them to travel so far – many from West Island – to discover the trout fishing is struggling. She knew it had to improve…
Fortunately from now on we can confidently encourage them to come knowing they will enjoy splendid conditions. SWMBO’s fear is that when we talk them out of it they may panic and go to another river? Desperate stuff!. So to encourage them back is a repeat of a letter from a well known West Island angler/author below.
Even for SWMBO (She Who Must Be Obeyed manages everything at TRM except the spawning runs – the responsibility for which She delegated to God) it is impossible to please everyone all the time. In June we had anglers book for four or five days and then pack it in early when they did not get the results they anticipated. Last week we had anglers book for three or four nights and then leave early as all their chilly bins were full and they were exhausted – they had their ‘fix’ after only two days. So She cannot win.
Above is a brief history of the Taupo fishery prepared by the Trout Centre to remind anglers of how the pattern has changed over the years. It is now far more unpredictable and unreliable in terms of timing. Spawning runs appear to happen almost at any time. The “good ol’ days” of booking the same time each year are no guarantee at all. From now on the best time is simply when you can get here. For those traveling from West Island that might mean the best time is when you can get travel discounts in the tourist “shoulder season”?
This was originally posted in October 2106. At that time we were also trying to post a brief video interview which was delayed – waiting until the computer learnt how… (That is now added below – apologies for the sound quality!)
Peter is the author of “Fly Fishing for trout down under” and has published a string of articles in Freshwater Fishing and North East Angler as well as writing a column in Fly Life.
Dear Ross and Pip,
Thanks for your kind hospitality and welcome over the last week. As always, we had a great time exhausting ourselves fishing probably far too much. I am happy for you to post the interview as you see fit. I have attached some pics.
Also, here are some reasons why Aussies should come over to Turangi to fish the region and stay at the Tongariro River Motel.
1. The Tongariro is big, bold, cold, clear and like nothing in Australia.
2. The rainbows and big, strong and fit. You might even get line burn on your fingers as I did when a fished raced up the current with me trying to control it. Rainbows on steroids.
3. You will find out how good your knots are. And which brands of tippet are best.
4. The fishing in the Tongariro can accommodate a lot of anglers because the fish feel secure in so much water and move from the depths to the shallows often, even if there are some anglers around.
5. You will see more three pounders in a day than you will see in a season. And they are not even the big guns.
6. You may well see your backing for the first time as a fish races down the river.
7. You can go to Turangi and fish in the dead of Winter and still catch plenty or extremely strong fish. Although it’s cold, the sun still seems to come out so you can smarten your sun tan even then.
8. The smaller rivers and wonderful. They are not small by Australian standards.
9. The duns hatch in the Tongariro during Spring and on dark the fish rise freely for them in the heads of the pools. Hold on when a fish takes your fly or a trailing nymph.
10. Dry fly fishing in the second half of spring and summer must be amazing, too.
11. The smaller rivers give your some confidence when you feel a bit beaten by the Tongariro.
12. There are three fly shops in Turangi – I like that. All the gear and flies are high quality, too.
13. Fishing across and down with a sinking line is fun and productive.
14. The Tongariro River Motel is about five minutes’ walk from the river, so you can pop down for a before breakfast fish while your mates are still snoring.
15. There are fly rod hooks above the dinner tables in the motel so you can fix your gear up after dinner ready for the next day and leave them safely.
16. Ross understands that fishers will bring wading boots and waders inside overnight to dry, so he supplies a mat for them.
17. The smoker in the motel is legendary. Don’t forget some crackers to go with the fish.
18. You will catch more large fish in a week than you probably will in a season.
19. There is a seat outside each unit of the motel to take off waders.
20. You can pop up to one of the nearby lakes (about 15 minutes) and fish for big or huge rainbows. You will probably catch a few, too.
21. The motel units are comfy and perfectly equipped for between 1 and 5 fishers. No nonsense and well cheaper than a week anywhere in Australia. A week in Turangi staying in the motel will cost you less than a week in Australia, airfares included.
22. Ross will lend you waders, boots and a rod if necessary.
23. Ross and Pip are very hospitable.
24. Turangi has a couple of good supermarkets and a pub for dinner – try the “pig and slaw”, not appetisingly named but good nevertheless!
25. You will leave already hatching plans about coming back.