Turangi New Years - Kayak Fishing Taupo Lakes

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Epicskwid
Posts: 830
Joined: Fri Sep 26, 2014 8:20 pm
Kayak Make: Viking
Kayak Model: ProFish 400 Lite
Location: Napier

Fri Jan 03, 2020 6:38 pm

2019 was a very good year for me with many pbs smashed out of the kayak. With the year coming to a close it was once again time to head up to the Taupo region for a break from it all. Every time I stay at ‘the Bach’ with a bunch of family friends. This is a short walk away from the Omori stream mouth.

I arrived on the 30th and got straight into the fishing that evening. I left at 5pm and fished till about 7.30. Conditions were quite blustery, so I had to do a heap of paddling to keep myself on the spot. My set up for catching trout is 2 flies on a ledger rig tied with 8lb fluorocarbon. I space the two out by about 70cm each, with a 2oz sinker below. My favourite flies are Parsons Glory, Jack Sprat and White or silver rabbits. All in size 10.

I made my way to the drop-off and found a good rock that came from 32 m up to 28. There were fish all over the spot on the sounder just above the bottom. I would paddle on the spot to keep myself in place then drop the flies. Often the fish would hit on the drop. the conditions were not ideal since I would hook up a fish and be dragged 500m downwind before landing them. The fish were biting hard and I got a nice 5 pounder
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along with the rest which were from 3 – 4 pounds. All were thick silver lake fish full of smelt. I took a few back to the Bach for everyone since some smoked trout would be great for the new years party.

On the 31st I was up early and off to Lake Otamangakau for my first attempt at fishing one of the hardest lakes in the region. The fish here grow massive averaging 6 lb and there are many trout above the 10 lb mark. Both Rainbow and Brown Trout grow to this size due to the extensive weed beds.
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The insect life is pretty crazy with thousands of damselfly nymphs hatching and trout gorging themselves for the majority of the day.
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I took the yak plus my fly rod and found the fish immediately. There were about 10 rising and splashing about between the shore and a weed-bed. Many of these fish had both a dorsal and tail fin out of the water. You can really see how big these fish are. I began trying to present a damselfly nymph on a long 18 ft leader, but these fish were not even wanting to look at a fly.

Eventually after hours of casting to fish, I gave up and went to go chat with some of the many boaties. A local kayaker had landed 8 rainbows over 6 pounds, by casting a dry fly with a small nymph underneath. I swapped my leader down to 6lb and began casting my own dry dropper.
It took some moving around the lake and many fish refusing to bite but eventually I hooked a fish. It took off and my luck was just terrible, my dry fly hook snapped its bend in two. Just from the pressure on the dropper.

Later on, I found another patch of fish and finally after another hundred casts I hooked up to a fish properly. It took off and cleared the water 3 times. Then for whatever reason the hook just came out. Frustration. The fish would have been 6 ½ pound, an absolute football.

The day continued and I saw fish being caught in the distance. Including an absolute monster 11 1/2 lb Rainbow with some people whooping a few hundred metres away. the fish filled the whole net up. I continued being skunked and lost another fish. After 10 straight hours of trying my heart out, I gave up and headed back to shore. I learnt quite a few things:

- Sunny days / Windless days = Spooky fish
- Using a Nymph with an indicator near weed-beds are good fish catchers
- Damselfly nymphs are way smaller than I expected
- Come prepared with more Stillwater patterns
- Crowds of people means harder fishing
- Stay near the weed-bed edges
- Be prepared to lose fish in the weed

I will be prepped for next time I go up during Feb – march perhaps.

The new year’s celebrations continued well into the night and I got to bed just after 12. I got 6 hours sleep and got straight onto the lake to get stuck into the jigging.
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First drop I was straight into a trout. This really good fishing continued for the next 3 hours. I’d paddle along looking for fish on the sounder and then drop the flies down to intercept the trout.

Eventually me and a few other boats found a really good area and were hooking up one after the other. A Tristram next to me hooked up on all three people’s rods and then I hooked up too. We landed all 4 fish. It was great fun sitting out there on a windless morning and having a chat to a few boaties. The fish bit so hard that all of us had caught over 10 fish each by about 10am.
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Great fun on 4kg line. Most of these trout were sitting on the 30m line so it became easy to find them staying at this depth. I ended the session with 12 fish caught and released.

Continuing with the full send, I headed over to the Tauranga-Taupo in the afternoon. The fish here were pretty spooky so I had limited opportunities to hook fish. I caught a number of 6inch fingerlings before lengthening my leader right up and fishing to some of these tough fish. The first was extremely shallow. I nailed my cast and the fish rose to take a look at my indicator, before turning and inhaling my nymph. This fish jumped like mad and after a short fight I got it to the bank. The first thing that struck me was its jaw. The bottom hadn’t formed properly making a strange looking fish. Obviously, she wasn’t having any issues feeding.
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The next few sections of the river were holding few fish and many of them were just that spooky, it didn’t matter what I threw at them. Finally, I started to connect with a few, but they were in some snaggy water and quickly busted me off. At a favourite pool I hooked up to a nice fresh rainbow but as I got her under control, she shook the hook out. I saw over 40 fish on the walk up including 4 large browns over 8 pounds.

I headed out again on the lake on the 2nd. this time the fish had moved more north from last time. Fishing was much harder, and it took some time to find where they wanted to hold. Eventually I was fishing between around 15 boats, who were all jigging. everyone was picking up the odd fish. we drifted over a very small area where the fish were holding and there was a bit of competition. Still it was good fun and quite social. I ended the day on 7 fish landed.
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After 29 fish over 4 days I was sleep deprived, had cramping muscles and I’d missed a few breakfasts. All part of it. I’m now in recovery mode and am going to it a rest for a week before looking to hit the salt again. Cheers !
Viking ProFish 400 Lite
Kayak PB's
15.10kg Kingfish - Tangoio Beach
10.20kg Snapper - Tangoio Beach
3.20kg Kahawai - Napier Port
2.70kg Rainbow Trout
2.20kg Blue Cod- Tata Beach Golden Bay
2.15kg Trevally - Taylors Bay Mahia
2.10kg John Dory Taranaki Port
1.40kg Tarakihi - Whangawehi Mahia
1.21kg Gurnard - Tangoio Beach
20kg Thresher Shark- Urenui Beach

User avatar
AndrewRawlingson
Posts: 2568
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2012 10:03 pm
Location: Northland

Sat Jan 04, 2020 12:42 am

Excellent report :y:

tuaman2
Posts: 9
Joined: Sun Nov 04, 2018 4:44 pm
Kayak Make: Viking Kayak
Kayak Model: Profish Reload/Tempo 2

Sun Jan 05, 2020 5:21 pm

Do you find the two rear rod holders tip the kayak if you hook onto a decent size fish? And do you use them for trolling? I haven't seen them on the rear of a yak before, I have two up next to my fish finder on the tackle pod which i find handy

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User avatar
Epicskwid
Posts: 830
Joined: Fri Sep 26, 2014 8:20 pm
Kayak Make: Viking
Kayak Model: ProFish 400 Lite
Location: Napier

Mon Jan 06, 2020 9:31 am

tuaman2 wrote:
Sun Jan 05, 2020 5:21 pm
Do you find the two rear rod holders tip the kayak if you hook onto a decent size fish? And do you use them for trolling? I haven't seen them on the rear of a yak before, I have two up next to my fish finder on the tackle pod which i find handy
Those rod holders i use for when on anchor either live-baiting or fishing with ledger rigs. I have had kingfish on with them in the holder and had no stability issues. I can also turn them rearward for trolling for a lower rod angle.
Viking ProFish 400 Lite
Kayak PB's
15.10kg Kingfish - Tangoio Beach
10.20kg Snapper - Tangoio Beach
3.20kg Kahawai - Napier Port
2.70kg Rainbow Trout
2.20kg Blue Cod- Tata Beach Golden Bay
2.15kg Trevally - Taylors Bay Mahia
2.10kg John Dory Taranaki Port
1.40kg Tarakihi - Whangawehi Mahia
1.21kg Gurnard - Tangoio Beach
20kg Thresher Shark- Urenui Beach

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