Weekly Fishing Report – Central South Island- 17-10-19

  • North Canterbury Central South Island
  • 17/10/2019
  • Richie Cosgrove

Weekly Fishing Report – Central South Island- 17-10-19

Outlook for the weekend

There will be widespread rain on Friday and with it a real chance that river levels will be elevated on Saturday – maybe just a little bit or maybe too much.

Be sure to keep an eye on the ECan river flow website to monitor the situation for yourself.

The lakes will offer a sure bet and the weather looks set to clear on Saturday.

Right: Toby Greer with his 7-pound lake Benmore salmon.

There could be a bit of wind kick-up from the west on Sunday.

Some good catches have been reported from Lake Benmore lately including some salmon of size.

Toby Greer and his family fished Lake Benmore near Sailors cutting during the school holidays and he landed a whopper of a salmon at 7 pounds.

His dad Leighton said they also caught up with an angler who had caught a 5-pound salmon.

Leighton reported that they landed about 20 brown and rainbow trout for the trip.

Their fishing style was to troll in about 3 metres of water, around 100m off the bank and use traffic light tassie devils on standard spin rods.

Keep in mind there are thousands of sockeye salmon in Lake Benmore too, and they are catchable.

We are keen to establish the techniques and tricks with ‘kiwi tackle’ to get you catching sockeye and have recently done some research on the Ahuriri Arm.

We had success catching them, but the fish were undersize (300mm minimum size) so we are keen to learn and share how to target the legal-size sockeye.

WFR1920.10 likely looking sockeye sign on the fish finder

likely looking sockeye sign on the fish finder

Only the year class approaching full maturity, that will spawn next March will be of legal size.

There should be tens of thousands of those to target.

The trick for targeting sockeye is to troll mid water in deeper parts of the lake and to use a spin rod deployed using a downrigger set at about 8-12 metres deep.

Keep a close eye on your fish finder for large schools of small fish and an even closer eye for the old flooded trees which are as tall as 12 metres and still standing.

Troll at a slow speed, about 3kph.

Small lures like the 7g Dandy (daffy) or luminescent doll flies are proven to work on Benmore sockeye.

WFR1920.09 luminescent doll fly 7g dandy hookless 22g Zed spinner

luminescent doll fly, 7g dandy, hookless 22g Zed spinner

In front of the lure a hookless ‘dodger’ is set about 1m ahead on a trace, a 22g zed spinner with swivels added to the split rings works.

This technique is based on Kokanee fishing in North American but uses gear readily available in New Zealand. 

If you give sockeye fishing a go at Lake Benmore, we’d like to hear how you get on.

In last year’s weekly reports, we covered the topic of sockeye in a three part series, including some catches of decent size sockeye.

If you missed those reports, then here are the links. Report 1, report 2, and report 3

Clean, Check and Dry

We would like to remind all the local and visiting anglers to look after our great fisheries by ensuring you don’t transfer unwanted aquatic organisms to these waterways on the recreational equipment like boats and waders.

Some nasty critters like didymo, Lagarosiphon and lake snow already exist in some of our CSI waterways, so we don’t want to spread them any further.

Also, other pests exist outside of the region but not in CSI.  

The key message here is, please make sure when you change waterways you remember to clean your gear in-between. 

Here is a link to MPI’s pocket guide to cleaning your gear, it covers different techniques for cleaning a range of recreational gear you might use.

Notice board

Hard Labour Event

Saturday 26 October

Kayakers will be venturing from Lake Ruataniwha down the Ohau B and C canals in the morning as part of the Hard Labour sporting event.

Please be courteous to the Kayakers during this momentary inconvenience to your fishing trip.

High country opening

First Saturday in November

Fish & Game’s Twizel Kids Salmon Fishing Day

Sunday November 3

Held at Loch Cameron near Twizel, registration on the day from 8:30am fishing starts at 9:00am.

Make sure you Click here for all the info.

Canal litter pick-up

Saturday November 9

Meet at Jakes Hardware in Twizel town centre at 8:30am for briefing and spot prize registration.

Free BBQ lunch and spot prize giving at 12:30pm.    

Tight Lines

Rhys Adams, Central South Island Fish & Game Officer


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