Rotorua Winter Shoreline fishing

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    Posted: 08 May 2017 at 10:51am
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First outing last night for the winter season to Te Wairoa mouth.  A few fish holding in the stream, and a few in the trap so good signs.  Fished for a couple of hours from just on dark til my rumbling stomach got the better of me.  Landed 2 jacks both around the 4- 4.5lb mark and in pretty good nick, and had a couple of missed takes.  Nothing holding off the angle jetty stream yet, and didn't see anything moving off the beach.
 
Going to head out to Okataina tomorrow night as word is that there has been the odd fish coming off the beach, so will post a report on that. 
 
If I have time, will check out the dump too as there should be fish starting to show up there now, as a mate was slaying them on the jig in 20 - 25m a couple of weeks ago straight off there.
 
What else is happening out there?
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Mossy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 May 2017 at 8:34pm
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Thanks for the report. I've always been interested in having a go at winter shoreline fishing, but apart from a quick nudge at Okataina last year it's just something I haven't really gotten to.

Do you use lumo flies, or the darker ones? And do you need a fast or slow retrieve? I'm not much of a flyfisher, but it's something I plan to fix.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (1) Likes(1)   Quote Rainbow Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 May 2017 at 8:58pm
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Just returned from Rotoiti.   I jigged from the kayak and after looking for fish during the first day I did not find any around the Pipe or the Dump.    There was a high concentration off the Ruato point, which suggests that night fishing would be more productive on that beach.    All fish were in top conditions with many full with mature eggs.    I would expect them to home into the beach very soon and possibly are just waiting for the next dump of rain that activates the inflow culverts.    

I used to do a lot of night fishing all along the shore release points and found a two fly rig very popular among the locals.    Best combo is a big dark fly with a truck and trailer dropper either a small lumo Doll fly or a very small Craig's Nighttime with a lumo body.   Important to choose flies that don't tail wrap.   This rig is fished on a floating line with a reasonable fast retrieve as the weed at Ruato is only a meter below the surface.    At night fish tend to look up for a silhouette rather than down into the weed .    Also don't try to cast max distance,instead make sure your leader turns over on every cast as only at night you can fish with a tangle for half an hour without being aware of it.

Cheers

Rainbow
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Kooza Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 May 2017 at 8:58am
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thanks Rainbow, might save myself the extra few kms and check Ruato instead - maybe head down in to the corner?
 
Mossy - at Okataina I tend to stick to a floating line off the beach as the weed there is similar to what Rainbow says above about Ruato.  Fishing from the point at the left end of the beach you can go to an intermediate as you're casting across in to deeper water, but I still have success there with a floating line and long (12ft) leader.
 
At Te Wairoa mouth I'll tend to stick to an intermediate, but if there's activity on the surface, or the fish are holding just off the lip, a floating line/long leader works fine.
 
As far as flies go I don't stray too far from the old faithfuls - doll fly (chartreuse/green/orange), green or lumo marabou, std or lumo craigs nighttime.  On change of light my go to fly is a Mrs Simpson. Red Setters and olive woolly buggers work well here too.  In saying all that I've also caught fish here on a white marabou and a grey ghost after dark.
 
Always keen to hear what works for others
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (1) Likes(1)   Quote The Tamure Kid Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 May 2017 at 12:00pm
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Hi Kooza,
Last time I fished Okataina in the winter, it was a tough night for most - at both Ruato and the lodge beach - apparently. I was the only one hooking fish according to the Doc ranger who came past doing a catch survey. They were nice fat 6-7lbers.

I was fishing exactly as you and Rainbow describe, with a big self-tied Kemsley Marabou (with a little bit of lumo material like a jungle cock feather tied one one each side of the head) on top, and a bought fly similar to a Hairy Dog on the trail. 

I bought that fly in Rotorua on my way through because when I went to tie some slim lumos at home my Aurora skirt seemed to have got brittle and discoloured. The fly had a body of wrapped lumo material, with black hair as the tail and two 'wings' of what looked like black possum fur.
That was the one they wanted - the guy next to me threw the book a them, including lumo Dolls etc and others along the beach couldn't believe I kept hooking up. I heard various oaths and "he's on again!" in the quiet night.

I don't think I was in a special spot, given it's basically the same shelving beach all the way along, or was doing anything very different with a slow figure eight retrieve. So I put it down to that fly. It's not much of a sample size, but there you go...
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Kooza Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 May 2017 at 2:43pm
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Hi Tamure
 
don't worry, I've had plenty of experience standing next to someone landing fish after fish while I "threw the book at them" for zilch...but then I've also had plenty where I was the one catching them as well.
 
A couple of years ago i was at Okataina on a pitch black night when 2 others turned up, one started fishing just to my right, and the other one carried on down the beach a bit.  After the one on my right had landed his 3rd fish in quick time, he waded over to me and said "here give this a go, I tied this one myself" and proceeded to hand me the rattiest looking piece of crap I've ever seen.  When i said "cheers mate", he said "oh **** sorry, I thought you were my mate, can you give it back" hahaha
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote The Tamure Kid Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 May 2017 at 3:11pm
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Haha, nice one! 
Fly fishing certainly can be fickle and bring you back down to earth when you think you've got it sussed. I've still got two of those flies in my streamer box and will tie some of my own versions next time I go down.

Okataina is a fantastic place to fish, particularly on a still, dark night when you hear the weird shrieks in the forest, and every fish splash. I know it's supposedly best on a rough weather night, but if you're catching plenty on a nice night, I'd prefer that.
It still gives me a fright when a big rainbow nails the fly when I'm half falling asleep.

I also like the weirdness of seeing wallabies on the grass behind you etc.
I swear I once saw one on the highway back to Hamilton after I knocked off fishing at midnight - right up on the Mamakus, but Doc told me they aren't far west.

When this crap weather from the tropics comes down later this week, it might stir up the fish down that way at the various Rotorua lakes.

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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Kooza Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 May 2017 at 3:56pm
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it's a magic place alright, and you're right about it fishing best in rough weather, although it can get a bit soul destroying though trying to cast in to a southerly blowing straight up the lake. 
Yep, a nice low pressure system should kick things along, although I'm not sure we need too much more rain, the lakes are pretty full at the moment.
 
Heading out there shortly so hopefully I'll have something to report on tomorrow!
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Kooza Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 May 2017 at 1:08pm
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One of the more interesting starts to a nights fishing I've had...arrive Okataina around 5pm and notice some people over at my preferred spot - the small beach/point around from the left hand end of the main beach.  Head down the beach and as I get closer I notice that is a photographer and his assistant taking photos of someone - turns out the someone was young, female...and naked as the day she was born Shocked  Not wanting to look like a creep, I decide to give them their space and fish the middle of the beach until they leave - fair to say I could have had fish rising right in front of me and wouldn't have noticed hahaha.
 
Anyway, once they've gone I head over and fish the point til about an hour after dark - very quiet, nothing moving, then a westerly breeze picks up so i decide to move on.
 
Head down to Ruato to a bright moon and glassy water, so not looking too promising, but some fish moving around keeps me interested - one close in, in the rip, and another (probably more?) further out around the weed line.  A regular turns up and says he was fishing the western point at Okataina, with fish rising all over the show, but out of his casting range.  I give him the rip as I want to fish long, on the left hand side of the current where there are fish moving further out.  After 30 min or so, he hooks and drops a nice fish close in, then I hook and land an absolute barrel of a hen, around 6lb, from wider out.  Goes quiet for an hour or so, and just as I'm going to call it a night, he lands a nice jack, all coloured up, from out of the rip.
 
So, apart from the photo shoot Wink, not an action packed night, but the fish are there if
you're prepared to work for them, and they're in superb condition.  Got a fair bit of rain forecast for tomorrow, with a northerly wind, so we'll see if that kicks things along a bit.
 
To be continued...
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote The Tamure Kid Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 May 2017 at 3:09pm
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At least if you tell your wife/girlfriend you saw a Double Booby they won't give it a second thought.
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Fishb8 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 May 2017 at 5:16pm
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Wonder was it that girl in the pics on top of Taranaki?
Be yourself; everyone else is already taken
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Daniel K Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 May 2017 at 5:33pm
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That's wicked. Me and my mate are planning a trip around the Rotorua  lakes for a bit of shoreline fishing soon. As an absolute newbie, would anyone be able to give us any advice on what to do and what not to do? Is there a general fly that people use that produces well? Also, without opening up a can of worms, what are the general ethics of flyfishing that we should be aware of? Don't want to be ignorant and rude is all. 
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Uncle Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 May 2017 at 7:10pm
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Daniel, are you a member of Tga fish & Dive club?
There are experienced anglers in the club who would likely be happy to help.
If not a member, it would be best if you could get someone who knows the ropes to help out.
By that I mean, spend a few hours on the water with you to get it sorted.
Some anglers take things pretty seriously, especially at night time on the big lakes, Tarawera, Rotoiti & Okatina.
There are quite a few things I can think of off the top of my head...don't cast over anothers line, don't shine a torch on the water in front of you, don't wade in noisily, & not at all if others are fishing from the bank. Don't false cast off the water, blah, blah, blah.
But, have fun & enjoy the sport.
It's not all that difficult & most anglers are happy to help & share advice if you approach them right.
Good luck Big smile 

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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote The Tamure Kid Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 May 2017 at 8:45pm
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Bang on, as usual Uncle.
The only other thing is entering the water at a stream rip into the lake when other anglers are already fishing. My understanding is that the etiquette is to join from the outside, never try to squeeze in the middle.

At the very least, ask the anglers already there where they'd like you to fish.

And if someone lands a fish and leaves the water to deal with it, don't jump into their spot. They have the right to return to the spot where they were fishing.

I'd add a safety warning regarding river mouths at Tarawera etc, to check them out in daylight so that you don't step off a delta into deep water in waders.

As Uncle said, good luck.


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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Daniel K Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 May 2017 at 12:24am
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Thanks for the tip guys. I'll keep all that in mind. Most of it seems like good ole common sense stuff, but there are a few things that I'm not to sure of. What is a stream rip? I haven't joined the BOP Fish and Dive club but it sounds like a good idea. Thanks for heads up. 
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote The Tamure Kid Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 May 2017 at 10:13am
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That is where a stream enters a lake - typically, there is ruffled water for some distance as the stream current meets the still water - then it drops over a ledge into deeper water. There is often good fishing at rips in the winter when fish are waiting to go up to spawn - or in summer when they are feeding.
My understanding is that all rips at Taupo and Rotorua are fly fishing only, and there's a distance of about 300m from stream mouths where you can't spin fish or troll. Please check that on the regulations if you intend to try a method other than fly fishing.
If you are an absolute beginner, I advise you to learn to cast on dry land first, as Uncle says help from a club would be ideal.

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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Rainbow Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 May 2017 at 10:29am
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It occurred to me that newbies may not be aware that winter shore line fishing at the release points is most productively done in the dark either at night or in the early morning.    I have fished at Lake Tarawera during the day over drop offs with a hd shooting head and a heave and leave globug.     When I fished off Ruato last weekend there were shore fishers along the beach in the afternoon.    I came in several times for a cuppa and never saw any fish sign on the sounder anywhere near the beach and not even a fair way out.    Rotorua may be different as fish stack up in the cold inflowing spring creeks.    Another option is the Ohau Channel near the inflow gates.    Most people fish with wet line but we slaughtered them on the far side with small globugs Tongariro nymphing style.

Cheers

Rainbow
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Kooza Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 May 2017 at 1:59pm
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Here's my 2 cents worth Daniel, and I'm assuming you're a complete newbie.
 
Best fishing is after dark, using a floating or intermediate line, with the most popular (well, mine anyway) flies being Doll flies (lumo), marabous (std & lumo), Craigs Night Time/Scotch Poacher/Black Phantom (std & lumo), Woolly Buggers.  You'll be fishing at release points/spawning areas where quite often the fish are close in (Ruato, Tarawera landing, Te Wairoa stream mouth) so you won't even have to get your feet wet.  Other places like Okataina main beach/Rangiuru Bay require wading.
You can also spin fish at Tarawera Landing and Okataina main beach.
 
Fishing these spots during the day - if there are fish moving around chasing smelt, then target them as you would anywhere else - floating line, smelt patterns, fast retrieve.  If not then you're best bet is to "heave & leave" with a fast sinking line (shooting head preferably) with a metre or less of leader, and a glo bug or booby on the end.  Cast well out so you're fly is over the drop off, then sit down, grab a beer (or cuppa) and wait.  This method can be lethal if the fish are around, and is a nice relaxing way to spend a few hours
 
As mentioned above, if other fishermen are there, go and have a yarn to them, most are willing to let you know what's been happening.  Even better, call in to any of the tackle stores in town (H&F/Hamills/O'Keefes/Outdoorsman) and ask the staff for the latest oil on what's hot.  They're talking to fisherpeople all day every day, so they know what's going on, and they're usually only too happy to help out visitors to our area - especially if you spend some money with them!
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Mossy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 May 2017 at 2:25pm
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Had an hour or two last evening flinging a fly at the Te Wairoa stream mouth to no avail. There were a few others fishing when I arrived but they headed for home about a half-hour before dark and then I had the place to myself.

Was very quiet and still, and I didn't see or hear any fish rising, so probably a glo-bug mighta been the better option.

Alas there were no naked models roaming about either, so no consolation prize for meTongue
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Post Options Post Options   Likes (0) Likes(0)   Quote Kooza Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 May 2017 at 2:54pm
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hahaha, yeah I doubt if I'll ever get to see that again! 
 
I fished Ruato last night for a couple of hours, but the Nor'East chop was a pain, pushing the rip almost parallel to the beach, and dragging my line all over the shop.
 
Shot out to Tarawera on the way back in to town, and spent an hour at Waitangi, but pretty quiet there too
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