This is the time of year when things get quite busy down in the Taupo region. Doctors, solicitors and drain-layers all dust off the waders and nine weights and head to Taupo in search of peace, solitude and fresh fish. Well if the Hinemiaia last Saturday was anything to go by then peace and solitude are out of the question, but at least there were a couple of silver bullets to take the edge off. I’m not exaggerating when I say it was wall to wall with fisherman out there and no matter where you looked there was a big, bright, fluffy indicator floating around the corner letting you know your favourite spot was taken before you even saw anyone. In situations like this it’s easy to throw your toys a bit and drag your bottom lip around the track complaining of internet reports, fishing clubs, guides and foreigners choking up the river and taking all of your fish but with a little bit of thought it’s not hard to save the day. Here’s my three tips for getting the most of the day when your local stream more resembles a Queen Street “Boob’s on Bikes” parade.
#1 - HAVE A BEER (or two):
You’ve just walked to your sure thing, the money water, and there’s someone there flogging away. What to do? Take a seat somewhere out of view, zip open your pack, crack the beer and relax. Chances are they’re not going to be there forever, most likely you’ll still be drinking your beer when they leave and guess what? You can have another beer while the water rests and the fish calm down from the brutal aerial bombardment they’ve just been subjected to. Besides, drinking a nature beer is a pretty good time in itself.
#2 - FISH THE CRAP WATER:
2_ Fisherman are creates of habit, we’ll search out a nice pool we can work through and something that has the least chances of us losing gear. So while this is all well and good it’s actually no good on a busy day because you’ll just end up fishing to traumatised trout, but in very good looking water. Now is the time to seek out the riffles and tricky stuff to fish, bash through some scrub and maybe find a hidden stretch otherwise out of sight and inaccessible. Take a look, you’ll be surprised what you find, and usually it’s a pod of refugee fish that are relaxed and ready to chow down.
#3 - CHANGE IT UP:
3_ Massive fluffy indicator, check. 10ft of leader, check. Hare & Copper bomb, check. Glo bug, check. Chances are the fish will know what’s up with this rig pretty quickly on a busy day. It doesn’t get much more Taupo than that and while there is no denying that it catches fish on the regular it is a really, really obvious danger sign to fish after a few anglers have been through. Stop and have a think for a moment and don’t be scared to change your rig, you won’t be able to move through sections like you normally would due to human traffic so make the most of the water you have in front of you and don’t stuff it up by being lazy. Does your indicator need to be that big for this water? Maybe try something different, more subtle with your flies? Would high sticking work this water better? Maybe a scotch instead of a beer?