Fly Fishing - Beautiful High Country
Ahuriri River up the Ahuriri Valley
The Mackenzie Basin up around Twizel and Lake Tekapo offers some of the most spectacular fly fishing opportunities in New Zealand surround by some amazing scenery. There are plenty of different options from spring streams to rivers or lakes to choose from and all of them are full or rainbow and brown trout whereas some have salmon also.
Key things to note:
1: While some areas are accessible without a 4wd, in summer they get very busy so it is definitely preferable to have a 4wd to access more options
2. Steffen would definitely recommend bringing some waders or wading boots because you will need to cross rivers to get to the best spots
3. You can get all your supplies from the local shop in Twizel Jakes Hardware or at the Hunting and Fishing shop
4. Steffen would recommend using a fly rod with 5 or 6 weight
5. If you are bringing your own equipment from overseas ensure it is very clean to get it through customs on your arrival in New Zealand but Steffen recommends buying all your flies once you arrive in NZ
6. You can purchase a fishing licence in advance through this website https://fishandgame.org.nz/licences/fishing-licence-info/or in the local fishing shops. You have the option of either 24 hours or a season pass.
7. Steffen would recommend going with a local guide where possible to get the most out of your day and we are happy to help you out with recommendations on possible guides
From the start of November Steffen ,Ekerdt the Head Chef at Lakestone Lodge disappears for hours on end as he goes in search of his next big catch in the lakes and rivers close to the lodge. Here is an account of a typical day spent fishing
Steffen's first day fishing for the season he caught this beautiful 4 pound brown trout before he released it back into the water.
I get up in the morning, head to the window and open the curtains to check the weather.
Sunny day, great!
After this reassuring start I go down to make me a coffee and prep myself a sandwich and a couple of snacks for my day trip ahead. At last I just fill up my water bottle and then I am ready to go.
Next stop are the beautiful rivers and streams in the area. It usually takes me around 30 - 90 minutes to get to my favourite spots with my four-wheel drive.
Lupins along the Twizel River
As soon I arrive I set up my rod and grab my wading boots.
Now I am ready to go.
I like to walk for a few hundred meters downstream before I turn around to walk back up the river. On my way along the river I am constantly looking for an indication of what the fish are eating on that day. If it’s a new spot where I have never fished before I go into the water and look under rock and stones as what kind of insects are living in this part of the river. On good days you can see a lot of insects flying around and landing on the surface or dropping from the trees. Once I have made up my mind, I open my fly box and collect the flies of my choice. When my rod is all good to go, I start to walk slowly upstream, my focus is in this moment just on the water. As soon I have spotted a fish I start to prepare myself to cast the fish. Whenever I hook a fish it means that my cast was good and that I have chosen the right fly. I always try to get the fish carefully out from the water to take the hook out of the fish’s mouth and bring it straight back to the water after taking a picture. What a great feeling.
After a few hours on the river it is time for lunch so I go back to my car and sit in the back of it with the door open. It’s such an amazing feeling to be in the nature with no one else around. No one can call you on your phone due to the lack of phone coverage in many of these back country areas and you really can enjoy the silence and the gentle sounds of the river.
After my lunch, I’ll drive to another spot, because next to fly fishing my other interest is in four-wheel driving. So I am always trying to find new spots for my fly fishing by crossing rivers with my car and drive over the hills and follow the rivers from the lake.
The closest fishing spot from our lodge is the Twizel River (12 min by car). It's great at the beginning of the season. (Around November & December).
One of our guests out enjoying some fishing after getting some advice from Steffen
Don't be shy - if there is one thing Steffen enjoys talking about more than food its fishing so you are welcome to ask him for advice during your stay at the lodge.
We had an incredible stay at Lakestone Lodge for our elopement in October! We were blown away by the thoughtful touches and attention to detail throughout our entire stay. Stunning rooms and views! Delicious food! We couldn't have asked for a better location and experience. Thank you so...
This small lodge has excellent and very helpful staff. the rooms are good and the food is excellent. However the crowning glory for my wife and I was the magnificent view along the lake with Aoraki Mount Cook central to the view surrounded by other snow covered mountains in the Southern Alps.
Peterm2014123, Auckland Central, New Zealand
We throughly enjoyed our stay. What amazing views, waking up to see Mt Cook painted in soft pinks at dawn was truly special. We had a delicious meal, equivalent to any in an upmarket restaurant. Staff were attentive, but unobtrusive. Furniture and layout high quality. I’d love to...
Fiona T, Auckland
Had a wonderful stay here, we were all well looked after from the moment we arrived. Hospitality is incredible, Izzy is lovely and warm natured. The private rooms look out onto Mt Cook and Lake Pukaki! Food is Devine. Thoroughly enjoyed our stay.
The minute the gate opened and we drove up the Lakestone driveway, we instantly felt the stresses of work disappear. We couldn’t have chosen a better place to start our holiday. Our room was breathtaking. The Lodge itself ticks all the boxes. But the thing that stands out here is the...
From the moment we arrived till the follow up visit to pick up our bikes that had graciously been looked after while we shot up to Christchurch, the service and hospitality was amazing. Mike met us and with his staff quietly looked after our every need. Food was delicious and very well...
Excellent dinner date at this exceptional lodge, panoramic views over Lake Pukaki and Aoraki Mt Cook. Our meal was Michelin Star standard and served by lovely locals. Ideal location for a romantic weekend or overnight stay. Couldn't fault our experience. The food certainly was a very...
Came here for a week of relaxation. You don’t need to even leave your room to experience amazing views and all the activities/hikes nearby are great. I highly recommend the A2O trail on the east side of the lake. Staff was very kind and helped organize everything for me (I didn’t...