Reel Life October 2021

  • Southland
  • 30/08/2021

Reel Life October 2021


The 21/22 sports fishing season is almost upon us, and this season is not one to be missed.

We Southlanders are very fortunate to have an abundance of rivers, streams, and lakes close to main centres and have easy access and healthy trout populations.

In my opinion, if you are a beginner angler, there is no better place to start your trout fishing journey.

Above: Spin fishing on the Dunsdale Stream.

Our lower rivers should be your first stop if you are learning to fish or perhaps returning to the sport after a few years off.

Try the lower Oreti River near West Plains and Winton, the Mataura River between Seaward Downs and Gore and the Aparima River near Thornbury and Otautau.

These areas have high trout numbers, and the trout are not too tricky to catch.

Bait fishing rig copy

A basic bait fishing rig for use in deep pools or our lakes, click on the picture for a large version.

When considering techniques for our lower rivers, bait fishing with garden worms or fresh mussel bait (available from the supermarket) is an excellent option for deep, slow-moving sections of rivers or in our lakes.

Try the basic bait fishing rig in the diagram.

Try Toby lures (7-10 grams in weight), small bladed spinners or soft baits if you like lure fishing.

Soft baits are particularly effective when fished close to the bottom in deep areas.

If you are keen on lake fishing, focus your angling effort on stream mouths and shallow lake edges, as these are common trout foraging areas.

The best times to head out fishing on our lakes is early morning, late afternoon, and in the evening.

Finally, we suggest Southland anglers be adventurous this seasoncheck out some spots you haven’t been to before.

20210222 142552

Fishing in Fiordland is an awesome experience. Pictured is an angler on the Eglinton River.

There is nothing quite like walking up a river you have never visited before and experiencing that anticipation as you wonder what could be just around the next bend.

Here’s an idea, if you haven’t fished in some of our remote fisheries before, the likes of Fiordland, for example, why not have a go this season?

Fiordland provides some fantastic fishing for both brown and rainbow trout, in crystal clear water, amongst some of the best scenery in the worldget amongst it!

If you need any fishing advice this season, please feel free to contact the Southland Fish and Game team. We have offices at 17 Eye Street in Invercargill and the Te Anau bird park. Alternatively, you could contact us on 03 215 9117 or You may also like to follow our Facebook page for regular tips and updates

Tight lines!

Cohen Stewart, Southland Fish & Game Officer.

More Posts