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Otago Backcountry Fisheries

The following Otago rivers are designated Backcountry Fisheries and require a Backcountry Licence Endorsement

Otago Backcountry Fisheries Access Maps

Important information regarding DOC 1080 poison operations
 

Greenstone River

Open Season: 1 Nov – 31 May
Method: Fly Only
Bag limit: 1
Reach: The designated backcountry reach of the Greenstone River begins upstream of the first swing bridge situated closest to the river mouth, on the Elfin Bay / Lake Rere walking track, and extends to the source at Lake McKellar.  All tributary streams flowing into the Greenstone River are designated backcountry waters including the Caples River.

A Controlled Fishery also applies in the Upper Greenstone above the Sly Burn confluence from (1 Feb – 31) March each season.  Please refer to the Greenstone Controlled Fishery information page for further details.

Caples River   

Open Season: 1 Nov – 31 May
Method: Fly Only
Bag limit: 1
Reach: The entire length of the Caples River.

Dingle Burn

Open Season: 1 Nov – 31 May
Methods: Fly and Spin
Bag Limit: 1
Reach: Upstream of the bridge on the Dingle Burn Station access road.

Upper Lochy River

Open Season: 1 Nov – 31 May
Method: Fly Only
Bag Limit: 0 - Catch and Release only
Reach: Above the confluence with Disputed Creek

Nevis River

Open Season: 1 Oct – 30 April
Method: Fly Only
Bag Limit: 1
Reach: Upstream from the confluence with the Kawarau River.

Hunter River   

Open Season: 1 Nov – 31 May
Methods: Fly and Spin
Bag Limit: 1
Reach: Upstream from the river’s mouth where the river enters Lake Hawea.

Young River    

Open Season: 1 Nov – 31 May
Methods: Fly and Spin
Bay Limit: 1
Reach: Upstream from the confluence with the Makarora River.

Wilkin River

Open Season: 1 Nov – 31 May
Methods: Fly and Spin
Bay Limit: 1
Reach: Upstream from the confluence with the Makarora River.

Etiquette for Otago Backcountry Anglers

  • Respect fellow anglers and remember they arrived at the river with the same expectations as you.

  • Never ever cut in front of other anglers regardless of how desperate you are to get to the water.

  • If fishing solo, invite an angler you meet to fish with you or share the available water. You may both learn something.

  • Use a quality line which strikes a balance between strength and visibility so that fish can be landed smartly. Do not play fish excessively

  • When releasing fish, do so with great care and try to keep the fish in the water as much as possible.

Prevent the spread of freshwater pests

Please click here and read the important information provided 

Compliance Monitoring

Fish and Game will be monitoring compliance on designated backcountry fisheries during the season. Non-compliance with the backcountry licence and controlled period licence requirements is an offence under the Conservation Act and subject to a maximum fine of $5000. 

Fish and Game look forward to your cooperation in the management of these fisheries and we encourage you to show courtesy and respect to one another.

If you require further assistance please contact us