Mike Kirkpatrick owns and operates Latitude Guiding, based in the Nelson region and specializes in producing larger than average Brown Trout for his many international clients. The Lewis Pass region is a place he frequents as it holds some large trout at times, and it is this, coupled with a relentless Nor’west wind, that necessitates a powerful and responsive setup.
Reel: Lamson Speedster S
The lowdown: The north Canterbury rivers are large, often braided, and sit on large open flood plains, which leave them at the mercy of the prevailing and dreaded Nor’west wind. This wind can suck the life and soul out of an angler very quickly, and as it blows downstream on almost all of them, a fast and powerful rod capable of punching a line into it is a must. This is where the new Scott Meridian 9’ 6wt ‘NZ Special’ comes into its own. The Meridian is incredibly light in the hand, with a very low swing weight that belies the enormous power it can generate with even a small amount of line out. But casting out to medium and long distance with this rod is when you really feel its jaw dropping power and accuracy. Mine is coupled with the LamsonSpeedster 2.0 Reel and Airflo ‘Hero’ 6wt fly line which is the perfect foil for this rod. Simply the best big river setup I’ve used. Try one, see for yourself – you know you want too!
Here’s a clip featuring the exact setup mentioned here: https://youtu.be/1TkffFBhIGc