Stunning golden coloured Brown Trout from a river mouth on Lake Taupo.

One That Didn’t Get Away

It was about time I turned around my loosing streak to big browns… so I did!

Early autumn provides a wonderful opportunity to intercept Lake Taupo’s big Brown Trout, as they gather around the numerous river mouths waiting for an opportunity to run up stream to spawn. They are also attracted to the cool oxygenated water, that due to the thermal stratification of the lake in summer, is much colder than the surface layer of the lake.

On the evening in question conditions were perfect – cloudy, with a hint of rain and a gentle on-shore breeze. I had been fishing for 20 minutes when fish began to reveal themselves – firstly a few large swirls under the surface, but that progressed to large fish jumping clear of the water. Adrenalin flowed as I cast towards the gathering fish. Activity continued but there were no signs of a take. A change of fly brought immediate results.

Great golden coloured Brown Trout from river mouth on Lake Taupo
Great golden coloured Brown Trout from a river mouth on Lake Taupo.

The slow twitched retrieve was suddenly interrupted by a solid obstruction. I lifted the rod and tightened up. There was no movement at all, it simply felt like I’d hooked the bottom. I maintained pressure just in case, moving the rod tip to the side in order to change the angle. Suddenly a tug, then solid unmoving resistance again.

A few more angry head shakes from the trout and the fight began in earnest. The fish finally had enough of the strange irritation and decided it was time to head back to deeper water. A powerful determined run saw the tail end of the fly line leave the reel, however on 8 weight gear with an 8lb tippet the fish was soon turned.

The remainder of the fight was typical Brown Trout stuff. Short surges of powerful torque rather than  spectacular bursts speed. After a dogged fight I was mighty relieved to guide the big golden head towards the net… a sweep forward and the large fish folded into the soft mesh.

Thanks to a friendly group of onlookers for agreeing to take a few photos.