We have a bit of a mixed bag as far as the weather goes over the last fortnight, a bit rough, wet, and windy in the back blocks, but settled down on the flat land!
Saltwater: The report I hoped for during the last write-up came true! We had almost the perfect forecast for heading out of Akaroa chasing ‘puka. Unfortunately, I couldn’t make it, but Hamish and Mike for the shop joined up with Sam from Shimano New Zealand and had a magnificent day on the water. There was no bait involved, an all-lure day was the goal. As we are normally fishing quite shallow (75-90m mark) using lures is not just fun, but exceptionally effective! Shimano Wing Fall slow pitch jigs, BakuBaku, Doterra BakuBaku, and Lucanus (including testing a yet-to-be-released colour!) slow jigs were all used, and all showed their worth on blue cod, sea perch and h?puku. Both spin and overhead reels were used, but it was having the confidence to use the light gear including braid to not just get these lures down but to also give them the most action once in the zone that makes these lures the most effective. So often we see customers that make the switch to slow jigs, but simply run them on existing 50lb setups and just don’t have the same results as fit-for-purpose tackle. If you’re to get out there, keep an eye on the weather, have a yarn to the boys in-store and make the most of what we have off our coast.
Mike Dunn on a ‘no bait, lure only’ Shimano day successfully tested the lighter gear.
Freshwater: I know that I have mentioned this before, but it is worth sharing again. Whilst the McKenzie country canals are undoubtedly an exceptional fishery. there are some great areas close by that are getting far less attention these days as anglers focus on the canals. One such place is Lake Benmore, and recently it has been fishing very well. The cooler winter months are perfect down there, yes it can be cold, but the fishing will typically offset that!
All techniques work well: fly, trolling, soft baits, and spinning all have great success rates. Looking hard at the areas where streams enter the lake will be the best options currently. The Ahuriri Arm, and Haldon Arm are definitely my favourite picks at this time of year. An added bonus is that you can catch brown trout, rainbow trout and both chinook and sockeye salmon, and Lake Benmore is open to fishing all year round. I am a fan of drifting and casting soft baits around stream mouths and this works well on the aggressive rainbows through the winter months.
We have a very active team of keen anglers in our Fishing Department, so please fire any questions our way and we will point you in the right direction to keep you on the fish. Please check out our Facebook page for more info on what we are up to in Canterbury.
Check out the Bite Times for your favourite fishing location here.