As we approached the second opening day of the season for our high country rainbow fisheries, Chris Dore and myself took to the backcountry to explore some new water for me and some that Chris hadn’t been into for a decade. The long and gruelling walk in was rewarded with a some beers and a great feed in preparation for the following days fishing. We started bright and early as the sun rose over the mountains, filling the valley with much needed warmth. The fishing was great, with dozens of hookups and plenty of dry fly takes we made our way to pack up camp and hit the trail back to the car. 7 hours of hiking in 2 days had the legs screaming but it was great to explore another part of this glorious country!



After a very busy guide season I finally finished up and hit the water for myself. One of my first stops was to head to North to Tauranga and get my Salt Fly fix with Lucas from King Tide Salt Fly. Chasing big Kingfish in shallow waters is up there with some of the finest salt water fly fishing on the planet. These savage fish will either be solo cruising the shallows or bunch up on top of stingrays whilst looking to get a easy feed. Hunting them down in such a pristine harbour is not easy but every opportunity is truly pulsating and worth every minute.
We spotted this kingi cruising along a cliff drop amongst fallen trees as if he thought he was a brown trout. After an initial cast he didn’t pay much attention to the fly so we allowed him to continue his beat and circle back around. I had the fly placed and ready as he returned, then with a few short strips he began the pursuit and almost made to the boat before inhaling the fly and taking off in a blistering, reel screaming run. What seemed like an eternity later he finally made it to the net, and with my arms like jelly, holding him for this picture was a effort in itself!

If your heading to NZ to chase trout, I highly recommend you add this to your itinerary. There is no better finale to an NZ fishing expedition than landing a Kingfish on fly, trust me, it made my season ūüôā

Traveltruly Presents: Jungle Heli Fishing – NZ Fly Fishing

Any chance to get into the backcountry is worthwhile, but when you have a helicopter at your disposal it opens up a whole world of options. Armed with just an iPhone to film this recent guided trip, I take Florida angler Matt deep into the jungle to hunt down some wily browns amongst towering peaks, cascading waterfalls and gin clear water. The weather may not have been perfect, but almost everything else was with numerous fish more than happy to down dry flies and all of a healthy size. This is just one of the many special places we have in the south of New Zealand and it was truely a day to remember.

If your interested in travelling to New Zealand and trying some of the worlds finest trout fishing then just get in touch with me below. I can help you plan your whole trip from accomodation to fishing and everything else in between ūüôā

The best fishing guides do what they do because they love it, so what do we do on our days off? We fish of course!
Fellow Queenstown guide, Chris Dore and myself caught up for a few days road tripping around our favourite region, checking out a couple of the smaller, less known streams. Even though a pre-trip storm halted our initial plans, causing the rivers to rise rapidly, we still managed to find some great water, great fish and best of all some great dry fly action!

Just another day in paradise ūüôā

If your keen to get into some of the finest trout fishing action in the world this season in New Zealand, get in touch with me below

It had finally come, the date that all NZ anglers count down as if they were children waiting for Christmas. October 1st the fly fishing season began in New Zealand and I had arranged a trip with Tyler to some of my favourite spots. After dusting of the rusty skills and following a mild winter we were looking forward to some great conditioned fish, and we got them, eventually…..

This video explores both sides of the equation, the first half when things don’t quite go your way and the second when everything aligns and mayhem ensues. The passion for the sport drives us through the high and lows and as quoted at the beginning, we don’t do this because it is easy!

If your keen to get into some of the finest trout fishing action in the world this season, get in touch below and ill see how I can help.

Its almost that time again, October the 1st. The day that is etched into all anglers calendars rolls around quicker than we thought and we begin to dream of those perfect days on the water chasing down feeding fish in clear rivers. If your like me this day is an important time to stamp your mark on the season and get into the swing of things by having a decent trip arranged, last year for me it was a serious backcountry endeavour, this year its looking to be more laid back and a wholesome (lazy) experience.

October weather can be fickle at the best of times and putting all your eggs in one basket can sometimes be disastrous so I usually have 3 or 4 options lined up incase things go haywire. Your unlikely to get perfect conditions but if you strive for the best of the lot you will sleep much better knowing you did all you could to get the most out of the trip.

Last year was a perfect example of this. My first, second and even third options were dropped due to a decent storm about to lash the South Island, so I went way out of my zone to somewhere I had never been and did more driving and hiking than any sane person would ever want to do for a fish (if there are any sane fly fisherman?). Although the weather smashed us for the first 2 days, I could be rest assured I made the best decision out of my options and then when the heavens opened, they shined directly onto me (of course) and I heard the chimes of hitting the jackpot!

Im finding it hard to recall no but we landed around 2-3 fish each on the last day, all except 1 over the 8lb and 2 of them beating the reverted 10lb mark! You can see all the action in one of my first fly fishing films here:

Tips for Fishing the Opening Months

I find getting out during the first few months of the season some of the most rewarding of the year. The fish are more receptive to your offerings, less spooky and in places, more numerous than at any other time of the year. Although you may not get as much surface action as mid summer, there is still something special about watching a fish making a wide raging move to take a nymph and watching that indicator dunk (or what indicator?).

Flies: Ill usually start off with a double nymph & indicator rig early in the season, using size #10-#14 patterns with some flash to stand out in water that is usually a bit higher than during the summer months. If I’m feeling frisky, or better yet if the¬†fish are, Ill chuck on some terrestrial patterns such as beetles, or possibly a parachute adams if the fish seem to be sitting high in the water column and this usually gets a reaction. Also another good method is to cast a streamer up and across those deeps pools that may be hard to see into. With fish trying to regain condition after the winter, be sure you have some heavy duty tippet on as they will hit hard!

Locations: Its a great time to get out and about and explore new water. Last year I explored close to 25¬†new rivers in the first few months of the season, finding some that became my regulars for the rest of the year and others that I realised could change a lot over the coming months (for better or worse) and I noted when I thought it best to return. Generally those waters higher in a system are the best places to start as there will still be a lot of fish remaining from the winter spawning run, its amazing some of the places you can find fish hiding at this time, places you didn’t even know were big enough to hold a fish that damn big!

Gear: Early season can throw some wild stuff at you, high flows, gale winds and big fish so its good to be ready. Ill usually run with a 6wt rod and have a backup 8wt in the car incase things get really gnarly! You can also get away¬†with heavier tippet which can be a blessing when fighting strong fish in strong flows. Also, one¬†of the most important things is wet weather gear. Be prepared for shit to hit the fan, even if it doesn’t look like it will. Last season opener my mate was near hypothermia when we were on a backcountry trip in pouring down southerly rain with no waders in quite a large river. Luckily we were not to far from a warm hut when I noticed things were going down hill. I try not to wear waders as of October 1st, but this year with the luxury of being close to the car, I may just dabble ¬†ūüėČ

Practice:¬†Now, most people try to refrain from getting out onto the park in the middle of town to throw around a fly line, in fear of being ridiculed by 13 year old girls.¬†If this one of your phobias, no need to fear, just go find a random piece of water, even if it has no fish and start laying out a line. If you haven’t been fishing much (or at all) since the season ended you will be seriously rusty on opening day and that could be the thing standing in your way of making it great.

To finish up here is a video from another one of my October trips last year, this one was a road trip I went on for around a week by myself exploring new waters and getting into some serious fish.

Just remember, use September to get read, practice and prepare for whats going to be an epic season ahead!

Special: 10% off Guided Trips

The first few months of the season can provide you some spectacular fishing regardless of the variability. To celebrate the opening months I’m going to provide a 10% discount on my daily guide rates for October & November booking when contacted through my website. If this interests you and you want to chat about a trip just get in touch below.


The place where some of the largest trout in the world reside, The Mckenzie Hydro Canals, a place of ecological wonder.

This video is a short introduction to the canals including some fishing action of my trips there over the winter. The fishing is challenging and the conditions can be tough but the reward speaks for itself, where else can you have a realistic chance of getting a 30lb+ trout on a fly rod?


If you have any questions about fishing in New Zealand or would like to discuss a trip ,just get in touch below and I will see if I can help.