Reel Life January 2024

  • Eastern
  • 19/01/2024

Reel Life January 2024

Above Right: Waiteti Stream mouth. 

Hot Weather Brings on the Action 

We seemed to completely miss summer last year, but it’s back better, and hotter than before and with it comes some excellent fishing! 

Lake Rotorua’s stream mouth action is red hot at present with large pods of fish stacked up in the cool water inflows. Hamurana, Awahou, Waiteti and the Ngongotaha mouths are all worth visiting. Anglers have been making the most of excellent fishing since early January and it is likely this will continue through until at least the end of February if the weather stays hot. 

Smelt flies, small nymphs and soft hackle wee wets fished on a floating line are all taking fish. Browns can be targeted by sight fishing – often off to the side of the main cooler flows and by using smelt or bully flies bounced on the bottom.

Cicada are singing loudly and it looks like we might get an exciting bumper year of dry fly action. Initially hatching cicada tend to sit high in the canopy, lowering and becoming more clumsy and vulnerable later in the season, particularly on wet days.

Fish remain actively feeding at about the 20-meter mark during the day and can still be taken at shallower depths just after dawn.

Lakes Rotoiti, Okataina, Rotoma and Tarawera continue to fish well to deep methods such as deep trolling, downrigging, soft bait and jigging. Okataina and Tarawera in particular are producing excellently conditioned fish.

Keep them wet!

A reminder if you are intending to catch and release this summer keep fish wet one hundred percent of the time to maximise their survival. The use of a quality landing net is an important tool. If you want a photo, make ready with the camera first before lifting the fish from the water, and only have it out of the water for a few seconds at the most. As water temperatures increase trout are prone to increased stress. 

Lake Okataina

Lake Okataina is now partially open to boating access. An MPI (Controlled Area Notice, CAN) is in place, but the lake can be accessed between Friday and Sunday, between the hours of 6.30am and 7.00pm. All boats wanting to use the lake need to comply with MPI’s wash-down rules. Anglers are encouraged to check out full details of the requirements here

Datawatch tagged Trout

Tagged trout can now be entered online. Entries go into the draw to win one of 20 free whole-season fishing licences:

Eastern Region Fishing Diaries – All lakes and streams
Fill in your fishing diaries here to help us manage the Eastern Fish & Game region. Participants go in the draw to win a $100 voucher from Kilwell:

Tight Lines

Mark Sherburn, Eastern Fish & Game

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