Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Sage One Fly rod, Fly Fishing The Mataura, NZ fly Fishing schools, NZ Casting Lessons, Mayfly nymphs, Stu's Superior Deadly Minnows, NZ Smelt


Even when it`s quite there is always work to get done- where is George!
Just when things got quite in the shop and this April i´m down to 1 or 0 customers a day in the shop, the awesome dream team had to leave. Yes George my dad who you all got to meet in the shop the last few months has gone back to bonnie Scotland and the funny thing is has also taken mum the shop and house cleaner with him- the bugger! 
It was again awesome having their help and without them providing some great slave labour, i´m actually not too sure how i would manage to keep the shop doors open. Because the guiding and teaching is what still supports the shop. 
Two members- Mum & Dad of the dream team praying for customers for the Easter sale -from the universe!! 
Having my parents staying with me for over 10 weeks some would say would be crazy. Having them help, meet and understand all of the crazy fishing women and men and what makes all you guys tick and what drives me.
It is just an awesome thing, special thing to share with ones parents, lets hope i can budget to get some of the dream team back next year.
I hope you all had fun with them and no doubt you all did as people keeping coming in and looking at me and saying where is George!! - that does make me smile.

JUST IN IS THE NEW DVD-HATCH -CHECK IT OUT- you might even see my flies and ugly mug on it!

SAGE ONE FLY RODS- 4wgt 8,6 just in stock

RIO HI - VIZ  ORANGE Tournament fly lines- 120ft now back in stock.

SALTWATER FLIES- Check out some of the Best Baitfish flies you will ever use!! 

APRIL - FLY FISHING IN SOUTHLAND!- mid - upper MATAURA starting to fish well.

I have just finished doing quite a few full day fly fishing schools for beginners and some advanced fishers, where i was teaching casting in the morning in the casting area at the shop, then in the afternoon we would go to the Mataura river where we would put into practice our casting and some stream craft skills. Once everybody has roughly (in a day) got the hang of things we go chasing those things with fins!

We have been fishing mainly using the easy to see Deadly Cicada flies with a 1/2 foot of rio fluro 3.5lb tippet, tied off the bend of the cicada hook and a small size 16 nz realistic mayfly nymph tied on.

April trout are normally fat and in top condition.
Nearly every afternoon we have caught fish on the cicada and the nymph about 50-50. There as usual at this time of year seems to be quite a few fish in the riffles especially down in the Nokomai gorge walk in area down to cattle flat.
We all love dry fly April mayfly Madness!
Around 3pm there have been mayflies hatching with some fish starting to watch there clocks and start to rise for these small brown mayflies, but still not in a feeding frenzy- which we all want!

The upper Mataura has a few larger fish holding in pods in some holding pools but still not numbers moving up yet. One thing i personally want to do is to fish up from cattle flat up through the Mataura gorge area - that´s on my bucket list! One day!

There has hardly been any fishermen around so it´s been quite easy guiding at the moment and finding water and fish.
A client of mine stayed down in the gorge area until dark and just on dark he had a big hatch of mayflies and caught and missed a few fish- staying that bit later sometimes works!
Tie on a deadly cicada size 10 and nz nymph and search the foam lines and the shallow riffles, the fish will be hard to see but you shall have fun!!
I would think from now on the lower Mataura should start to fire up with some hatches, just yesterday i noticed mayfly spinners on my car.

I still have right up to the end of April some availability for anyone wanting to  perfect or learn how to fly cast or fly fish. A few dates are also still available for some hopefully dry fly mayfly action.

All the rivers are low and clear and the sun´s been out most afternoons so spotting trout has been quite easy in some areas.


Plenty rainbows are heading up the rivers near Te Anau, a couple of friends fished down stream and across due to strong winds blowing down stream the day they arrived, using my deadly minnows in the barred smelt white color and nailed plenty, mind you these guys can fish well.

Smelt flies- whitebait flies! These are the ones you need in NZ
Only avaliable from Stu´s Fly Shop!! Check out the different colors - these are barred tan.
Although they said it was not too hard fishing but was great fun as some times the water was erupting as the rainbows chased and nailed the deadly minnows as they swung round in the current and they stripped them in as fast as they could.

Another guide friend bought some deadly minnows and was working at the mouth of the Lochy river near Queenstown and 1/2 km up stream was also nailing plenty fish using the minnow in the same color- this guide was casting upstream and letting the minnow drift back near the fish and then stripping it. 

The fish would instantly turn and hammer down onto the fly, as the water was so clear he got some great visuals. Around the mouths of most of the rivers he has had clients stripping them on from the boat or bank as many fish are gathering ready to head up stream as well as he has been seeing plenty large shoals of smelt with trout smashing into them.

He mainly was catching rainbows, though he did say not far up the river there was a few big browns starting to show! Sometimes you do not need to go far for some action, especially if you have a boat!


Best if you want to stock up for your winter saltwater holiday or winter trout fishing to make your orders soon before i close at the start of may for the winter. I look forward to receiving your orders and support.

I hope you enjoyed this blog- just as much as my flies! Please keep the great photos and feed back coming in :)

Sunday, 8 April 2012


 YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR- boots, flies!
CREEPERS!! Underwater!!! Photo!

Because of the location and the awareness of the shop throughout the world i get to meet many overseas fishermen, guides and local fishermen as they will all stop at the shop.

Now i hardly sell any boots and the ones i do sell are Simms, because of the brands name and their services.

I personally use their boots and have even many years ago been a product tester for Simms for a new sole for wading boots they were bringing out, which was very interesting for me. 
Brands like this do the hard yards and testing most of the time they get it right, and the odd time they get it wrong, like every business in the world.
Their logo is copied and most of there designs by others and yes - these copies are cheaper - but do they last!
Stu's hi-viz mayflies- The time is near!! special new two tone black and white posts.
If there is one thing that falls apart before a season finishes it is normally a pair of these cheaper imitation wading boots, so if you buy a pair and they are cheaper and fall apart - please do not complain to the shop you bought them from (i don't sell them just in case your wondering) - just remember what you paid for! Like everything thing in life we all get what we pay for. 
Just this week alone i had two different fishermen come into the shop to complain about their boots  as soles were hanging off and toes were sticking out, they had bought from various outlets in Australia & NZ- again i had to point out - they got what they paid for!
 CARP In clear water these guys can sometimes be harder than a trophy brown to catch!
Flies are the same - you get what you pay for!
My goal is just like Sage, Simms and other top brands to take my designs using nothing but the best materials and TMC hooks to the world market. 
I thank you all for your awesome support, photos, feedback and very kind words.
Next year i hope to take Stu's Superior flies to your local fishing shop, so please start to inform them that soon they will be able to stock and sell you the best flies and fly designs in the world.

I´ve been fishing with other peoples flies throughout the world to get ideas for my own fly designs- with other fly companies - i have found this is a unique process i have worked on- nearly all other companies just copy other patterns and grab a handful of local known fishing guys names and add their name to random flies for promotion(i have been down that path)- no actual hard work has gone into the designs! I caught this fellow on a pink squirrel nymph  a fly from Wisconsin - now i have a new idea for a fly!! Support the designer!! direct!

LOWER MATAURA RIVER TROUT & Fish and game working on a Dvd

The mid and lower Mataura  river have just started to clear and sight fishing for trout has become a bit easier in these reaches. There is a few trout at the tail outs of most of the pools and flats rising to the odd Mayfly but these are all about 9inches long or smaller.
The great thing is though, is that they can still be hard to catch- size is not everything- skill is!
The guides i know in the lower mataura are even struggling to find nymphing fish (which is pretty abnormal for that section) and there has been no hatches or spinner falls, they inform me. 
Even here at my house i normally know when there is insect life happening as the mayflies and caddis cover my office windows and car in the evening or night.
For weeks now there has been nothing on the windows.
Now the lower mataura is a great fishery and i hear F&G are making a film about it- good on them- but unless they have skilled cameramen and an production company involved and some money etc involved. The dvd may struggle to compete with other dvd´s - compared to what dvd are coming into the store and the cameras used and quality.
But just maybe it will work out, i would think they will gradually do one for each of the countries top river systems north and south! I hope it works out as its a fantastic river and any promotion at the end of the day is great to get more people outside doing it! I´ll keep you informed on the F&G progress.


The other night we had a wee family viewing of a copy of the master dvd that Gin Clear is about to release called - HATCH - This is going to be the first of a series of dvd called hatch, that will follow the hatches/ food sources of fish species throughout the world, their behaviour, fish behaviour and the anglers behaviour when it happens. Poland, England, New Zealand, Australia etc are some of the locations featured.

It´s a very slick production and filmed with a red eye movie camera that is used by the big guns in the film industry. Some of the footage of different fish feeding will wet your mouth and you will make vocal noises as fish feed in slow motion (well i did - as some as the shots i thought were awesome) i never saw any god save the queen feeding???
For example you will see footage that has never been filmed before of trout tracking mayfly spinners and taking them.
NZ trout eating cicadas! Well we have seen that on other productions. But have you seen a wild trout (not one in a tank) chewing on the cicada to try and swallow it and then loosing it from its mouth and inhaling it again shot underwater in a gin clear NZ river!
A solid huge NZ trophy brown, i released last week.
You will see close up shots of willow grubs, a grub so plentiful but many have never seen!
For me this dvd was very educational - probably more so than what Nick ever intended. My parents thought it was a great dvd and thoroughly enjoyed it. I can only think what the next one will include as i know Nick has just bought another $90,000 us dollar state of the art camera for filming the next in the series, not to mention all the other gear.
Remember you will get to see it at the RISE fly fishing film festival that is touring NZ and AUS as well as all of Europe.
Oh! while i remember - it will also be showing in the USA fly fishing film festival, thats is constantly touring the states.
If you wish to buy this dvd click here- Hatch dvd

Black Stoneflies at the round table- Very realistic these are under water to show you what the fish see - as they creep along the stones.

Contact me if you want to catch some beautiful coloured browns, or brush up on your casting and stream craft skills.

Hope you all had a great Easter .
Remember only weeks left until the shop closes for winter :(- so get your orders in today for your winter fishing.


Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Willow Grubs the number one fly, Hatch the new fly fishing DVD, Mataura and Southland river levels

Another willow grub feeding trout gets released- this is why i use only the best strongest hooks! I personally do not want my clients or customers to loose trout!

Yes we had a wet summer and only in the first dry week of Feb did the dry fly action start to take off, as you all know, my clients had a ball fishing for willow grub feeding trout and catching them, something that some people in Fish and Game and some older mataura fishing guides have thought could never be done and has said no one has designed a fly that represents the willow grub which works.

Well you just have to ask my clients and all the fishermen that purchase my willow grub flies to find they may be stuck in an old mind set- or have not actually gave it 100% to find out!

It´s funny how these people just get stuck in one school of thought- my thought and other fishermen and guides is that if the fish are feeding on willow grubs they can be caught and now it´s been featured in a major fly fishing DVD!
You just have to have some more skill and patience to be able figure it out! And think out side the box! After all, the scientist say the trout have a brain the size of a pea- so that does not say much for us when no matter what we do we just can´t catch them every time!
Just feel the excitement!
But like many fishermen after much observation i start to wonder- there has to be much more to it than the pea brain- as we should be able to outsmart them every time- now that's food for thought!

The weather has turned yet again and the sun has been out and on these calm hot days, the millions of blisters (gals) on the willow leaves are becoming alive as the last of this years willow grub hatch grow large and eat their way out of there homes and fall onto the water on mass even this late in the season this year.

Normally the top flies bought in the shop at this time would be small hi-viz mayflies and spent spinners- but not everyday we are getting many tourist anglers coming in for my grubs and having a ball catching, missing and breaking off, free rising trout beneath the willows.

On saying this in the last week of guiding we are starting to see a few small mayflies hatching in mid- afternoon and my clients getting a few trout on mayfly dries, so there are a few small hatches starting.
A UNIQUE DESIGN from Stus vice.

Yesterday guiding on one Southland river- my client hooked a huge trout that was taking willow grubs, as soon as the trout saw our imitation he sped up and sucked down the foam grub 4ft from the tip of the rod, what a heart stopping site it was and an explosion when my client set the small size 18 hook.
Oh- i just finished watching the new fly fishing dvd- HATCH- in the dvd is short film on willow grubs, which is informative and which is out next week- more on that next week.

Throughout the season we have had many clubs,guides and tourist fishing groups in the door and great laughs and information shared.
One group in particular has been coming into the shop for years and supporting the shop- even though they have their own shop- now that's bloody nice and thoughtful.
Are Murray and Andrew the guys from High country outfitters in Jindabyne, nsw,Australia.
 in Australia- check there shop out if your in that area- they also sell a full range of Stu's Superior Flies- just look out for the yellow tags and you know your buying and tying the best flies on to your tippet.


The rivers are nearly all flowing clear and there seems to be not many fishermen around.
Yesterday i ended up for a few hours on the middle of the Mataura, we found fish on the edge of riffles, but the river even though the levels have dropped a huge amount was still not clear. As soon as it clears i expect it to fire up with plenty fish in the riffles and hopefully the normal April mayfly hatches.
So at the moment i recommend sticking to the upper reaches if you want to find any rising fish. The Oreti river has produced a few nice fish for some anglers using the NZ Deadly Hi- Viz Cicada, which i now have in stock in various sizes and also just in some size 10 tan ones.


All the sizes are now in on my saltwater flies- so if you are planning on catching some saltwater species or other predator fish check out the Superior Saltwater Flies on the site. 
I also have had more and more orders for these flies from people targeting Pike, Barra- they are all basically bait fish patterns with a unique large fish eye heads, great silhouettes and action tied on the best strongest hooks. These are the most sexy big flies that you will tie onto your tippet- they come in 1/0 3/0 and for the big boys 6/0.

Remember, to place any orders ASAP before the shop closes for the winter in early MAY.
I hope you have fun reading this and it all makes you smile today!