Salt Revisited

Josh and I returned to the Hauraki Gulf with the intention of giving the resident Kahawai and Kingfish a hard time… well, a couple of them at least!

I continued with my mission to use the fly while Josh focussed on hooking a Kingfish on any method that worked. He kept his options open with an assortment of baits including frozen bait, fresh fish, softbaits and lures.

The morning began with an extraordinary encounter – a large pod of dolphins hammered a huge school of baitfish while Gannets whirled and dived from above. Fishing took a back seat while we enjoyed the show. We kept our distance but all of a sudden the dolphins turned and headed directly toward the boat. They may have passed by the boat quickly but their memory will stay with me for a long time.

On to the fishing. While the fly was successful and tempted a nice sized Kahawai it was a fresh piper the won the day. Josh flicked the bait into the path of a hunting Kingie and induced an aggressive take. The biggest issue was the gear… in the rush to get a bait in front of the fish Josh had quickly grabbed an older set up not intended for these hard fighting fish. The kingie was played and landed while being serenaded in the background by a creaking reel! We also had to tail the fish because I’d forgotten to pack the net.

 

 

It’s a Tank of a Rainbow!

The rivers and streams entering Lake Taupo can be magnets for trout seeking to escape from the warmer temperatures that occur in the surface layer of the lake during summer and early autumn.

During a recent visit I was delighted to land a ‘tank of a rainbow’ – a good sized hen in magnificent condition.  Also great to have my wife on hand cheering from the shore whilst filming… helps explain the jerky footage!

The fish gave me quite a run-a-round, even on 8 weight gear that had recently been used to tame a good Kahawai off the coast of the Coromandel. While the Kahawai may have bent the rod into a shape most trout can only dream about, the sea fish couldn’t compete with the aerobatic performance of this stunning rainbow, which leapt clear of the water on several occasions aggressively shaking its head each time. Rainbows, you gotta luv em!

After a few photos to capture the moment the trout was returned to continue her preparations for spawning, which could take place in a month or so. The icing on the cake was the nice footage I managed to capture on my old Olympus Tough TG-01 as the fish swam back to the sanctuary of deeper water.