August and September are usually the more difficult months for anglers.

The winter spawning runs throughout the lakes are, to all intents and purposes, over for the year although there are a few exceptions.

The majority of rainbow trout are pretty much recovering from spawning so most of the few fish being caught are thin with white flesh.

In a few weeks the new fishing season will start and with that anglers will have more opportunities to target better conditioned fish as lakes that will have been closed for three months open once again.


In the meantime we are somewhat restricted as areas to fish and the quality of the fish there.

The lower Ngongotaha Stream is always my go-to spot at this time of the year as it is usually consistent as far as numbers and quality of fish is concerned but there are two streams that can be worth a visit that are still open to fishing and are not all that far away.

The Waimakariri and Waihou streams on the Waikato side of the Mamaku Range are two well worth a visit.

With crystal clear water, relatively easy access and larger than expected rainbows at this time of the year, these two streams have a magic all of their own.

Lightly weighted gold bead nymphs, very small egg patterns and dry flies all have been catching fish over the past few weeks.

During the summer these large fish are rarely seen and only become easily available during winter spawning, but back to the Ngongotaha.

The conditions for spawning in this stream allow for rainbows to spawn all year round in this stream, although there are times when the numbers are lower than at others.

Late into the evening fishing is usually best on this stream as it is then that most of the rainbows move upstream and a combination of weighted nymph and wet fly, preferably with a bit of sparkle tied into the mix, catches well, especially in areas where there is some wash from the street lights in the area.

Remember though that this light is strong enough to cast your shadow onto the water if you are between the light source and the stream, alerting any trout close by to potential danger.

The area downstream of the State Highway 5 Bridge is open to fishing, while above the bridge doesn't open until December 1.

The 'Open; area is a mix of easy water and very challenging, some only suited to spin fishing but well worth a visit.

One lake that does have fish spawning late into the spring is Lake Rerewhakaaitu.

About 45 minutes' drive south of Rotorua, this lake has three main access points that you can drive to and quite a bit of water that you can access along the shoreline.

Floating lines and smelt patterns in various colours will take fish at this time of the year, especially over the weed beds and there will be fish spawning in various areas of this lake as well.