Rotorua Fly Fishing Report - 15th December 2011
There was some fairly frenzied action off the mouth of Hamurana Springs earlier the week as caddis and green beetle were in abundance on the surface of the lake. Most of the fish that were feeding on these insects were rainbows but there were also a couple of large browns sipping gently off the surface. Gold bead hare and copper, prince nymph and various stonefly imitations proved to be acceptable to the rainbows. After dark a reasonable number of mixed size rainbows have been caught on size 12 pink or yellow doll flies as well as some of the larger nymph patterns. The better catch rate was had where the majority of the water was warm, with only a 30 cm band of cold water flowing across the bottom of the lake. Trolling well out into the lake off Hamurana has been fairly successful, judging by the number of times a few boats fishing there stopped to play fish that were hooked over the weekend.
As of Wednesday, Lake Rotorua was holding between 18 and 19 degrees C and should be able to hold that temperature even with the expected heavy rain. Even on overcast and rainy days there are fish rising off the mouth of the Hamurana Stream. They seem to be to the left of the main current and about 30 to 150 metres out from the shore.
The Awahou mouth is also producing fish during the day as well as after dark, though the condition factor of the majority of fish being caught is the same as at Hamurana, pretty poor. The few brown trout that are lurking around both of these stream mouths are in top condition though and are well worth targeting. Trolling off this mouth has been ok during the day, but it is early morning that seems to be the better option. Fishing from an anchored boat has also been fairly successful at various times. With the lake temperature being, on average, about 17.5 degrees C throughout the water column there is still a few degrees to go before fishing really starts to get to the point where the catch rates are awesome.
The Ngongotaha and Waiteti streams both had reasonable runs of fresh browns, mixed with a few rainbows. The majority of the rainbows are in better condition than those at the previously mentioned stream mouths as they are virtually all spawning fish. A decent drop of rain should improve the fishing, especially in the Ngongotaha Stream, should the upper reaches become a little discoloured.
Green beetles have also brought fish to the surface at Rangiuru Bay, particularly on warm sunny days. A green beetle imitation, drifted under the surface and with the wind is a little better for one’s catch rate than having the green beetle drifting on the surface. Doll flies in pink or orange work well after dark.
A few out of town anglers have caught some very good conditioned fish at Rangiuru Bay, mostly at night, though fish have been caught during the day as well. Once this weather pattern shifts and we get a few sunny days there should be a higher catch rate from this area, especially when using still water nymphing techniques. A long trace is usually required so that either a single or double nymph can get down close to the weed bed. Retrieving until you feel the touch of the weed at the drop off is recommended as well as there will be fish cruising there. Trolling and jigging have been productive though with the predominantly Nor-East wind of late most of the jigging has been over towards and in Humphry’s Bay and down towards the Tarawera River exit.
The Rangitaiki and Whirinaki rivers have fished well to a dry fly at times though fish don’t seem to be holding in every pool. When you do have a fish rise to your dry fly, it is almost certain that there will be other fish holding in the pool. Caddis fly imitations have taken fish as have cicada when the sun is bright in the sky. Other streams in the area are holding fish as well, though they are getting a bit of a hammering, especially on the weekends.
Otautu Bay at Lake Rotoehu is due to have an application of weed spray applied sometime over the next few weeks. This shouldn’t affect the fishing in other parts of the lake. Fish are cruising between the inside of the weed bed and the shore around this lake and has provided some fairly good fishing for the few who have got out there. The wind has been a bit of a challenge but sticking to the Northern side of the lake has helped as this side is somewhat sheltered.