Fresh water and salt water fly fishing in New Zealand and Australia. Brought to you by Riverworks waders, wading boots, vests, jackets, fly rods and reels.

Rob Wilson – Big Brown Water


1st October comes round every year, this season I went South to fish the upper Wairau River on Rainbow and Molesworth Stations.

Driving up the Wairau Valley from Blenheim didn’t look promising, water everywhere and rivers were bank to bank in a deep chocolate colour.  We tried to push through to the hut on Thursday night, however flooded side creeks made the fords uncrossable. We stayed in St Arnaud on Thursday night while we waited for the Side Rivers to drop. Thanks to a little help from a local machine operator early Friday morning we made it through to the Sedgemere Sleep Out around lunch time.

The Wairau was still a write off, so after lunch we headed over to Fish Lake.  Plenty of good sized fish cruising along the edge of the lake however they were too cunning for us.  After fishing the sheltered edge of the lake it was time to chill out with cold beer out of the wind.  It’s a tough life!

The Wairau was still filthy on Saturday morning so we headed over to Lake Tennyson to fish the lake and upper Clarence River.  High flows and only a couple of km’s of high fishable water made it difficult.  We eventually retired to the lake to throw a few spinners, after an hour of bitterly cold wind we packed it in and headed back to the hut for a spot of shooting and dinner.

I’m looking forward to heading back to the upper Wairau once the weather is a little more settled.  Amazing country that you have to see to appreciate!

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