It’s October and you’ve been looking forward to it for months, however you still haven’t got things laid out how they just should be. I certainly haven’t. So we asked our mate, Hannah Clement on her top tips for getting things sorted this fishing season...
Hannah’s top tips for getting your shit together:
1. Get your gear laid out
Check your net doesn’t have holes in it, that your water bladder isn’t leaking, that your fly boxes are still water proof, that you have two pairs of Simms Sun gloves, sunscreen and insect repellent in your vest / pack etc.
2. Re organise your fly boxes, and then reorganise them again
Starting off the season with newly designed flies is exciting but if they are all muddled up it can be frustrating. It could also mean the difference in knowing you have specific flies for those crucial moments of ‘match the hatch’ and also create more free time allowing your flies to be on the water.
3. Test your tippets
Over a period of time and certain factors, even modern high tech tippets can weaken somewhat if left in certain conditions. On this note, try a couple of knots to test the strength and durability of your tippet and perhaps replace them. It also gets you practising those knots.
1. Test your PLB and / or check your satellite phone and In-Reach before starting your season. If anything was to happen the last thing you want is to be left without emergency help. This could mean the difference between life and death.
2. Get out there and scout! Be careful of river banks, under cuts, loose gravel but get out there and scout your waters. Fish will be in their usual resident spots but there may also be some new pools, runs or riffles they can be in too.
3. Always wear some extra thermals or at least pack a spare top/pants. I’ve had it way to often where the river flows are high early season and someone take a fall or slip getting themselves wet. Being early season, ALL temps are cooler so it pays to have a spare set of dry clothes you can go to if this sort of whoops happens.
4. Go big. Bugs take a lot longer to hatch this time of year due to the cooler temps therefore they grow larger in size before coming out. With the help of bigger flows and sometimes murkier waters you can get away with bigger flies which may assist with better hook up ratios and stick better in heavier water flows.
5. Scout new water. A lot of people will go to their favourite spots, their usuals where they know they will catch fish. Opening is an awesome time to get out there and scout a lot of new places. Reach the head waters and see if there are any fish hiding up there. Think of the places who have had steady rainfall, look at weather patterns and go somewhere you haven’t been before.
About the author
Hannah Clement is a Christchurch based fly fishing guide servicing the North, and South Canterbury areas as well as the wild west coast. Check out more at www.shesonthefly.co.nz