Wellington Weekly Report 28th February 2019

  • Wellington
  • 28/02/2019
  • Wellington

Wellington Weekly Report 28th February 2019

We've got beautiful fishing conditions forecast right through the Wellington Fish & Game region this weekend.  

Light winds, sunny skies, mild temperatures and rivers returning to normal after a good blow out last weekend should really have the fish on the bite. 

The cooler - mid-20s - temperatures and rain flushing through the waterways will present much more comfortable conditions for the trout which sometimes struggle in hot summer weather and drop off feeding during the day. 

Expect the fish to start feeding fast and furious from now on an as they try to build body condition for the arduous winter spawning period.

There are still plenty of cicadas buzzing around the place at the moment too, and the trout are really throwing caution to the wind when it comes to feeding on these protein-plus food items. 

So, while last weekend was a wash-out everything is aligned for some spectacular action this Saturday and Sunday. With only two more months of the main season left, get into the action!   

Still need a licence? The Long Break or Local Area licences are a great way of maximizing on the best part of the angling season at a discounted rate. Grab one online here.   

Pictured above right: A whopping Wellington brown hooked not 15 minutes walk from SH2 desperately tries to avoid being netted (Credit: Andrew Harding).   

Here's the outlook:

Hutt River and tributaries

Hutt28Feb2019 edited

Click here for live weather updates.

Conditions are awesome in the Hutt valley for the weekend's angling. The Hutt is carrying a bit more flow than it has for most of the summer, which is great, but it's still clear and good to go. We will be drift diving the Hutt this Saturday - we apologize for any inconvenience but the data we gather is important for the management of this magnificent fishery. All tribs in the region are good to go. Watch for fish for start moving up into the smaller waters with the cooler temps from now on.      

Kapiti Coast

Kapiti28Feb2019 edited

Click here for live weather updates.

The Waikanae, Ohau and Otaki are set up perfectly for the weekend. Note that there are still plenty of cicadas about, particularly in the forested reaches and headwaters. With settled weather and good flows, this could be the weekend to push further back into the hills to chase some prime trout.   


Wairarapa28Feb2019 edited

Click here for live weather updates.

The Ruamahanga and its tribs are looking nothing short of stunning with the extra flow from last weekend's rain dump in the ranges. Drift dives show it is holding some great numbers in the mid reaches so this would have to be the pick of the week! As with the Hutt, we've had some cool evenings and weather fronts of late so watch for the trout to start slowly moving to traditional spawning waters.    


Manawatu28Feb2019 edited

Click here for live weather updates.     

The Manawatu is clear all the way through this weekend and the fishing has certainly improved with the cooler temps and increased flow. Watch the Pohangina, Orua and Mangatainoka rivers closely from now as the trout will soon start to feel the spawning urge and move into these waters from the mainstem. It's been a bit of a tough season in this part of the region but all the stars are aligned this weekend for some great action.      


Rangitikei28Feb2019 edited

Click here for live weather updates.

The Rangitikei and high country tribs are just screaming 'fish me' after the fresh that pushed through in the weekend. Clear stable flows, sunny skies, light winds and happily feeding trout will greet anglers who venture into these rivers this weekend!                

Tip of the Week - Best Time For Newbies To Learn!

IMG 7957 edited

This is a great time of year for novice fly anglers to achieve a good success rate (Credit: Andrew Harding)

If you ever decide to take up fly fishing, one thing you should do is focus your efforts on dry fly fishing during February and early March.

This is a time of ego enlargement and chest-puffery!

It isn't necessarily because the angler's skills are at their best, rather it's because the trout feed almost recklessly at this time and even crappy casts will catch fish.

The start of many fly angling careers, including mine, are invariably fraught with frustrating tangles, botched casts and spooked fish.

February and early March provide a salvation and sanity break though.

It's quite normal at this time of year to have trout give away their positions with splashy rises and even wayward casts (those that land 5m or further from the fish) can be good enough to draw it over and into an aggressive take.

You can even tweak the fly or slap it down on the cast - no natural drift or finesse is needed - to entice the trout to bite.

So if you have struggled so far this season now is the time to stack the numbers back in your favour.

And if you've got a friend, spouse or child who has always wanted to learn how to fly fish, now's the time to give them the best chance of hooking up, and getting them hooked for life.  

Thank goodness for February and March!          

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 profess to be looking after the 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

Wednesday 1 May 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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