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Kahawai Thread

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Post Options Post Options   Likes (1) Likes(1)   Quote Mudfish marquand Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Apr 2019 at 10:03pm
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Spent most of the last three days wading for kahawai in Tauranga Harbour near Fergusson Park. First two days using a #3 outfit and today, a #2. There was no shortage of medium size fish, but the bigger 5 pound plus kahawai will arrive when the water cools a little more. The fly of choice is a #8 pink crazy Charlie and the tippet that I use is 3lb. Using this tippet, the best on my #1 is 3.75lb and on my #3 is 5.25lb. For me, ultra light fly has opened up a new dimension in fly fishing. Landing some of these fish is a serious challenge and sometimes all the fly line and 50 metres of backing is out, and when the fish jumps out there, I get the shakes. ULF is hard on the bigger specimens and I usually keep these for eating. If any of you are keen to give ULF a go, I am very happy to put some time in with you. I reckon that if fly fishers experienced this challenge, there would be a lot more of the lighter rod weights in use. Contact me if you are interested. I will also be attending the Bowentown Saltfly Festival, 3 May to 5 May, so hope to see some of you guys there. Cheers
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Redfinger Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Apr 2019 at 11:57am
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I was out in my boat yesterday in Hauraki Gulf - found sporadic workups and had a lot of fun on the fly. Fish were not large at just over a kilo or less - silicon smelt fly seemed to work very well. Look forward to hooking into some bigger ones soon.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote otdrmn Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Apr 2019 at 4:30pm
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Nice Russell, tomorrow forecast looks good for the gulf
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote wolfie5 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Apr 2019 at 9:11pm
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Originally posted by Mudfish marquand Mudfish marquand wrote:

Spent most of the last three days wading for kahawai in Tauranga Harbour near Fergusson Park. First two days using a #3 outfit and today, a #2. There was no shortage of medium size fish, but the bigger 5 pound plus kahawai will arrive when the water cools a little more. The fly of choice is a #8 pink crazy Charlie and the tippet that I use is 3lb. Using this tippet, the best on my #1 is 3.75lb and on my #3 is 5.25lb. For me, ultra light fly has opened up a new dimension in fly fishing. Landing some of these fish is a serious challenge and sometimes all the fly line and 50 metres of backing is out, and when the fish jumps out there, I get the shakes. ULF is hard on the bigger specimens and I usually keep these for eating. If any of you are keen to give ULF a go, I am very happy to put some time in with you. I reckon that if fly fishers experienced this challenge, there would be a lot more of the lighter rod weights in use. Contact me if you are interested. I will also be attending the Bowentown Saltfly Festival, 3 May to 5 May, so hope to see some of you guys there. Cheers

Wow - I thought my 5 wt was edgy! And doing it with the light tippets as well. Hat off to you - have you done any video or articles on your fishing style?

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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Mudfish marquand Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Apr 2019 at 9:46pm
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Good evening Wolfe. I did a couple of articles for the Rotorua Anglers Association Newsletter. You'll be able to source these. Honestly, it's not that much of a big deal. You would be surprised how much pressure you can put on a fish, even with 3 pound tippet. I reckon it just sounds extreme. There's a bunch of us fish with #3 outfits, and I go a step further with the # 1 and #2. I use 3lb Maxima Ultragreen for tippet which is quite stretchy which gives you a little bit of latitude. The barbs on the #8 flies are crushed down so that they penetrate a little easier. Unlike most swf fishing, you don't strip strike, you trout strike to set the hook. You need a smooth drag reel, I use a Sage 2230 and I have landed hundreds of kahawai using ultra light fly. The drag on the reel is set very light and if all the fly line goes out, I take the drag off altogether. It's pretty scary when you have all your fly line out, plus 50 metres of backing, and the fish starts jumping. It's always good when the fly line goes back on the reel. It's also challenging and adrenalin plus. If you can catch kahawai with a #5, I guarantee you can land them on a #3 or lighter outfit. The hardest part of the fight is the latter stage of bringing the fish to the landing net, or getting it the last few metres to the shore. That can't be hurried and is when you are most likely to stuff up. I'm retired and I fly fish every day. I would be very happy to meet up with you and get you into some ultra light fly fishing for kahawai. I'm sure you can hunt down a #3rod or lighter. It's bloody good fun and once you try it, like me, you'll be the one that is hooked. Cheers
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Crochet Cast Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Apr 2019 at 8:49am
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Thanks for the report MM. SWF in the lighter weights sounds like fun I must admit I feel Overgunned with the 9wt on most KY. just a quick question on lines and leaders. What flyline leader combo do you recommend in the lighter weights?
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Mudfish marquand Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Apr 2019 at 11:41am
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My #1 is a Chinese Leichi V-Feather. While I have caught kakawai on the #1 line that I bought with it, it loads a lot better and is more fishable with a WF2F. I use a 7 foot leader made of 8lb Maxima Ultragreen  but mainly 3lb Maxima Ultragreen. I tie a surgeons loop at the 8lb end and use a surgeons knot to join the 8lb to the 3lb. My #2 is a CD Rods ICT and I love it. It fishes a #2 well but loads better with a #3 line. The #3 is a very rare Kilwell Reflexion, 9 feet in length, around 30 years old. Only 12 Reflexions were made and only two in #3. It is slower in action, prefers #3 lines and is a delight to use. My #2 is 8 feet in length and I use an 8 to 9 foot leader both on this and my #3. One thing about the 3lb Maxima is that the stretch gives you a little leeway when you set the hook. One thing about ultra fine leaders is that they must be constantly checked. Casting knots are barely noticeable. Every kahawai landed requires the fly to be retired with a fresh knot. For the #3, I use either a Rio LightLine WF3F and a Rio CamoLux WF3I, both excellent lines. Also, the #1 V-Feather is an absolute weapon, is very well made and performs well. While it is not my intention to drag rod sales away from NZ manufacturers and importers, more expensive brands could learn a lot from Chinese manufacturers. Cheers
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Crochet Cast Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Apr 2019 at 1:30pm
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Awesome. Thank you very much.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote muchalls Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Apr 2019 at 8:45pm
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Wow! Complete novice here, just started catching small ky on a 6 wt. I’m building a proper sw 6wt with a neat little fighting butt......may stick with it for a while, whilst I master the basics.....this is the biggest fish I’ve caught so far, on a repurposed 8wt I stripped back to the blank and rebuilt....no, not a big fish!


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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote muchalls Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Apr 2019 at 6:44pm
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Would anyone care to share some land based spots near Kerikeri? (Fishman?)
pm’s gratefully received.....
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote FishMan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Apr 2019 at 11:46pm
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Landbased kahawai options in the BOI'S are not great Charlie. Plenty of fish around the anchovy schools at this time of year, but it's mostly boat fishing. Any landbased location that has got some current should be worth a look.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote wolfie5 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Apr 2019 at 8:20am
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Originally posted by FishMan FishMan wrote:

Landbased kahawai options in the BOI'S are not great Charlie. Plenty of fish around the anchovy schools at this time of year, but it's mostly boat fishing. Any landbased location that has got some current should be worth a look.

And a few cubed pilchards wouldn't be a bad idea as well ...Wink
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote muchalls Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Apr 2019 at 12:57pm
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Thanks, as ever, if it works out well, I’ll let you know.
If not, it never happened.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote FishMan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Apr 2019 at 4:22pm
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If you feel like a drive the mouth of the Hokianga can have some big west coast kahawai. But you need the swell small. There'll be plenty of surfcasters there if conditions look right. Fish around the low tide.

The nearby omapere wharf can have good kahawai cruising the beach in front of the hotel. You stand on the wharf and spot the fish from the wharf casting back towards the beach from there.

The west coast always seems to have a better class of kahawai than the east coast.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote muchalls Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Apr 2019 at 10:16pm
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Cheers Fishman. pm sent.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Mudfish marquand Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 May 2019 at 1:34pm
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The interesting thing about the TAURANGA Harbour kahawai is that they mainly feed on mud crabs, followed by snapping shrimp, then cockabullies, particularly juvenile cockabullies. They are truly an opportunist which has made them such a successful species. Of course, when there are whitebait, juvenile yelloweyed mullet, piper or other species available, they take advantage of this food source. One thing is sure, they aren't likely to run short of food. One day I was cleaning a just caught kahawai and found a freshly eaten small green sucker fish in its stomach. I held the fish in my cupped hand of water till it came right and let it go. One lucky fish.
On the fly or not interested.
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