Weekly Fishing Report – Central South Island - 29-04-2021

  • North Canterbury Central South Island
  • 29/04/2021
  • Richie Cosgrove

Weekly Fishing Report – Central South Island - 29-04-2021

The “summer” season finishes up tomorrow, Friday the 30th of April; and this is the final weekly fishing report for the 2020/2021 fishing season.

Last week I requested some feedback about the CSI report.

Before I launch into another series of 30 weekly fishing reports next season, I am keen to understand what readers like or dislike about the CSI report and what they want to hear more about or less about for that matter.

So far it has been encouraging to only receive positive responses about the reports, however, there is still time to let me know what you think – email radams@fishandgame.org.nz

Above right: The author’s last fish of the summer season on the Opihi River.

I finished my summer season with a nice catch last Sunday on the Opihi River. 

While the family picnicked at the river I briefly fished a pool containing four big browns. 

The first fish refused my small, weighted mayfly nymphs – then spooked, and the same for the second.

I stumbled upon the third fish and spooked it but learned my lesson and slowed down - spotting the fourth. 

Now, this fish refused my small mayfly nymph too, so it was time for a change to something different and that something - a big ‘leggy’ spider – was devoured. 

My daughter ordered a trout for dinner but I felt like letting this one go, just because it was the last one of the season.

Besides, an order for a trout dinner is a good excuse to head up to our year-round fisheries in May, like the Canals or Lake Tekapo.  

If you’re not familiar with the option for fishing in May in the CSI Region it is generally limited to the large lakes and canals of the Mackenzie Basin and Waitaki Valley. 

Other options in May include small lakes like Lake Middleton near Lake Ohau and Lake Hood near Ashburton. 

Once we make it to June a handy selection of “winter seasons” re-open at Lake Alexandrina and the relatively short stretches from the State Highway 1 bridge downstream to the sea on these rivers: Ashburton, Rangitata, Opihi and the Waitaki.  

WFR2021.65 Winter fishing success for Mellissa De Lange at Lake Tekapo credit Rhys Adams

Winter fishing success for Mellissa De Lange at Lake Tekapo- credit Rhys Adams

Be sure to check out the regulation guide here before heading out on a winter fishing trip.

With your head buried in the regulation guide be sure to check out the Tekapo Canal listing on page 42 and the upcoming closure (1 June to 31 August) of the upper section of the canal from the Tekapo A powerhouse to the State Highway 8 Bridge. 

Some people know the State Highway 8 Bridge as the “main road bridge at Irishman Creek Station”.

The Tekapo Canal downstream of the State Highway 8 Bridge, including the “fishbowl” remains open all year. 

CSI is interested to see how the closure will change the use of the upper Tekapo, including the Magic carpet, in May and September - the months adjoining the closure. 

We will be undertaking angler surveys through these months. 

Our salmon spawning and harvest surveys are underway and if you haven’t responded to the email ‘harvest’ survey yet then expect a phone call sometime in early-mid May. 

This week, our latest live salmon aerial survey of the Rangitata’s two most important spawning streams revealed 23 live salmon in Deep Stream and 98 in Deep Creek – these are relatively low numbers but similar to recent years.

We have two further aerial surveys scheduled to enable us to estimate the total number of spawning salmon present this year in Deep Stream and Deep Creek. 

If you are keen to find out where the salmon harvest and spawning data “ends up” for the CSI Region, then click here to review our most recent summary report of sea-run salmon returns. 

Time to sign off now, we’ll be back with these weekly reports in late September.

If you would like to get in touch with the team at CSI to clarify a regulation or the likes over the winter then phone 03 6158400 or email csi@fishandgame.org.nz


The next bi-monthly meeting of the CSI Fish and Game Council is on 20th May, 7 pm at 32 Richard Pearse Drive, Temuka. 

Licence holders and members of the public are welcome to attend. Copies of Council Agendas and confirmed minutes are available under the terms of the Local Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987. 

Council meetings are advertised on our website here

Tight Lines

Rhys Adams, Central South Island Fish & Game Officer

More Posts