Wellington Weekly Report 14th March 2019

  • Wellington
  • 14/03/2019
  • Wellington

Wellington Weekly Report 14th March 2019

Good fishing conditions will last right through until late Saturday evening before a weak front arrives. 

The system crossing the region from the south-west will bring a little more rain early on Sunday morning so consider this report valid until Saturday night.

All the rivers have had a fair bit of rain over the last 48 hours so it's a matter of picking your spot; the smaller tribs will flush out faster and will likely be fishable.

The extra flows and cooler water temperatures could see fish starting to move towards spawning grounds in the headwaters which are smaller streams anyway. 

This time of year you can expect to encounter transient fish that are feeding heavily to put on condition for the grueling winter period. 

However, this active feeding doesn't mean easy fishing as one reader pointed out recently with the trout proving quite wary - check out our Tip of the Week below for advice on how to handle wary trout. 

With only six weeks of the main season left (closing April 30) now is the time to get out on the water.    

Still need a licence?

The Long Break or Local Area licences are a great way of maximizing this end of the angling season at a discounted rate. Grab one online here.   

Pictured above right: A very large Ruamahanga River brown - over 7lbs - that was sipping willow grubs in a quiet backwater last week (Credit: Hamish Carnachan).   

Here's the outlook:

Hutt River and tributaries

Hutt14Mar2019 edited

Click here for live weather updates.

The Hutt catchment has had a good fresh go through yesterday. The Hutt River is high and may be suitable for spinning over the weekend. The tribs are high but falling at time of writing so will be the best bet for fly anglers.       

Kapiti Coast

Kapiti15Mar2019 edited

Click here for live weather updates.

The Waikanae and Ohau are going to be the best bet for Kapiti-Horowhenua anglers as the Otaki is still quite high and, though it's falling, there's plenty of water to flush through before it clears. Could be an outside chance for spinning if it flushes through fast.   


Wairarapa14Mar2019 edited

Click here for live weather updates.

The Ruamahanga is high and still heading up. The Waiohine is unlikely to be fishable this weekend but oddly the Tauherenikau mustn't have got the same rain. Anglers should also look to the smaller streams in the east of the catchment or the Waipoua.     


Manawatu14Mar2019 edited

Click here for live weather updates.     

The Manawatu is fishable all the way through at time of writing this morning. That might not remain the case as there's a pulse of water coming down the Mangatainoka - check the flows before fishing the mainstem. Meanwhile, the Pohangina is looking lovely and there doesn't appear to be anything too sinister on the rain radar for the next few days.       


Rangitikei14Mar2019 edited

Click here for live weather updates.

The Rangitikei is chocolate brown this morning and unlikely to dump enough flow for the weekend; spinning later on Saturday could be an outside chance. Anglers' best option is to head up the smaller streams and see if any run fish have made their way into spawning territory yet.                   

Tip of the Week - When The Fish Get Wary...

Tip of the week Pic edited Copy

Wearing drab or camouflage clothing is a good way of getting better results with wary fish (Credit: Hamish Carnachan)

Wary (adjective): Feeling or showing caution about possible dangers or problems.

This time of year fish are generally feeding heavily to put on condition for the grueling winter period. 

However, this doesn't always mean they are easy to catch. 

In certain heavily fished waterways the trout will have seen a lot of anglers and will, understandably, associate any two-legged interloper as a clear and present danger. 

Whereas they may have continued on feeding in the early part of the season, the fish will react in one of two ways if it detects your presence late season: 

1. Stop feeding, shut down and remain almost rigged in the current.

2. Immediately bolt for cover. 

Subsequently, one of the best options for deceiving the trout is to remain hidden.

Keeping a low profile, using the cover of stream-side vegetation and camouflage clothing can be the difference between hooking up and watching the trout slink off towards the depths of the pool.

Another consideration is too go longer on your leader and go lighter too.

Casting longer leaders takes a little more practice, and lighter terminal tackle can mean more bust offs, but at the end of the day it will greatly increase you success when fishing to wary late-season trout.      

By Wellington Fish & Game officer Hamish Carnachan.

We Need Your Eyes On The Water

P1090632 editedRiver destruction carried out by Greater Wellington Regional Council in Wairarapa, turning a meandering braided river into a lifeless channel.  

We are interested what you see on the water. Photos of atrocious river bulldozing or bad land management practice... there's no reason for rivers to be treated badly in this day and age, particularly by regional councils which are supposed to be looking after our environment.

If you encounter any such activity please email the pics and details to us. 


 Click the screen shot below to go to Horizon's website showing the list of available river webcams.

Webcams edited

Notice board

  • Important changes to the regulations for the Rangitikei backcountry fishery come into force at the start of this season - click here for more. 
  • Don't let Greater Wellington Regional Council's river bulldozing ruin your day's fishing. The schedule of activity can be found here.
  • We've just been advised of the flushing flows from the Moawhango Dam which will cause the rivers downstream (including the Rangitikei) to rise: 

Water Released from the Dam Tuesday at 9pm:

Wednesday 20 March 2019 – 5 hours


 Email Wellington Communications and Field Officer Hamish Carnachan if you'd like any fishing or freshwater-related items posted to this noticeboard.

​*This report was accurate at time of writing - please ensure you check the latest weather and river flow information before you head out on the water.

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