Central North Island - Freshwater

fishing report

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Hunting and Fishing Taupo

Hunting & Fishing Taupo - Fly & Gun

Taupo / Tongariro 28th Dec 2023
Note: If map is showing it is created by LINZ / New Zealand Hydrographic Authority and made available by Creative Commons 3.0. Maps should not be used for navigation

The holiday season brings excellent fishing in Taupo, with successful early morning harling, prolific fly fishing due to rising temperatures and abundant fly life, and great catches in local rivers and backcountry, all while anticipation grows for a full cicada season.

The holiday season is upon us and Taupo is buzzing with Xmas and new year festivities. The lake continues to fish well with jiggers at around the 35-45 meter mark using mainly smelt patterns in #12 and #10. There is still no real thermocline as yet but it is starting to appear in larger areas as we head into January.

Early morning harling has been extremely successful with those getting out ½ hour before sunrise making use of the cooler water and minimal boat traffic. Once the sun is up and boat traffic increases this tends to push the fish down so early morning is key.

Fly fishing is heating up as the rising temperatures put the fly life into overdrive. I had a walk along the beach at the southern end of the lake and saw smelt shoals like I have never seen before.  Green beetles and brown beetles everywhere and even caught my first cicada fish off the beach today. Smelt fishing off the beaches has been quite prolific this year but was late starting and when it started was quite sensational.

Local rivers have been quite low and in need of rain which has now been and gone and the rivers have responded well with some great fishing on the dry fly. Mayfly and caddis hatches were quite phenomenal through December but now the trout are definitely looking up and taking smaller terrestrials. The Tongariro still has some nice fresh fish entering the system and also some healthy stocks of resident fish that makes this river the most consistent all year round. The big browns that enter the river through summer is really what attracts many anglers to the Tongariro through summer and are willing to take flies. The big ones are usually caught at night throughout the summer period.

Back country fishing has been great so far. The fish are bit late in gaining condition on some rivers but are gaining condition daily and rapidly improving.

The smaller lakes continue to fish well with Kuratau back to full level. Lake Otamangakau is now firing on damsels on the warmer days.

The big question everyone is asking now is will we get a full cicada season. They are starting to sing now after the rain earlier in the week so here’s hoping.

Tight lines from the team at Fly & Gun Hunting and Fishing. Be sure to call into the store to catch up on the latest fishing gossip.

Cheers All,

The team at Hunting & Fishing Taupo


Stop Exotic Caulerpa!

Stop the spread of exotic caulerpa seaweed. If boating in the upper North Island, check your anchor and gear before moving location and if you find any seaweed, Bag it, Bin it! Legal controls are in place at Great Barrier Island, Great Mercury Island and Bay of Islands.


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