Fly Fishing with Chris Dore

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Chris Dore is a recognised freshwater fishing writer and has been a regular contributer to a number of New Zealand angling publications over the past 15 years. Chris' writing focusses on the instructional aspects of trout fishing from the viewpoint that 'lifes too short to not catch fish - look outside of the square for improved success'.

The following is a selection of Chris' origonal articles from various publications, and random thoughts, experiences, trip reports and advice can be found on Chris' fly blog

Please note, Chris Dore holds the exclusive copyright to these articles, and written permission must be sought by anyone wishing to use these writings either in their entirity, on in excerpt.

 

 

Matching the Hatch: Cracking the code of Southlands Mataura river

They say that 10% of anglers catch 90% of the fish. This is never truer than when fishing the Mataura around Gore...

 

 High Water = Large Streamers

High water is a regular feature of springtime, wether the result of heavy rainfall or snowmelt washing down throughout the day. Fly fishermen with the “know how” can do very well in higher flows, with the added benefit of often having most of the river all to themselves...

 

 Low Water and spooky fish? Summertime Tactics Revealed

So have our southern rivers been low of recent or what? So many people are complaining about fish being too hard to catch, but on closer inspection it usually comes down to angler error or failure to capitalize on the conditions...

 

Prey Images and Primary Triggers

Good things are happening at present down here trout wise, and as we move into the Southern mayfly bonanza of autumn, I’m looking towards our smaller rain fed waters to keep me entertained with surface feeding fish. There’s something amazing about a small stream mayfly hatch - Snouts poking up towards the surface, leaving tiny, effortless dimples upon the water... this is wee emerger country...

 

Irish Tactics for our Southern Lakes

Winter is settling into the Queenstown area but not everyone is tuning up the old snowboard. Whilst many of our southern rivers are now closed for the winter there is plenty of excitement still to be had in our larger Southern lakes...

 

An Overview of the Double Haul

Hauling directly increases line speed and also adds load to the rod, although the latter is to a minimal degree. The double haul is simply pulling down with the line hand on the back cast, and pulling down again on the forward cast. This really has a profound effect on ones casting and creates better control of both short line and distance presentations...

 

'Go To' Flies Revealed - Part One: Design

As many of you will have noticed through my writings, over the past decade my ideas on fly design and effective patterns have developed a lot. One could say I have gone the full circle.

I believe this to be an essential trait of any fly fisherman, and the ability to keep an open mind, adapt, and accept new ideas where applicable and implement them appropriately will ensure one keeps up with the game...

 

'Go To' Flies Revealed - Part Deaux; The Beasties Themselves

So we have talked about what I look for in a fly pattern and my ideas on effective trout flies – quality, not quantity. Versatility, and the ease of tying: If a fly takes more than a couple of minutes to tie, it’s easier for me to buy them.Lets take a look at some of the patterns I use, my go to flies and see how simple, yet effective they are on our South Island trout...

 

Understanding your flyline 

After posting a topic on the New Zealand Fly Fishing Forum in relation to fishing our larger southern Stillwater’s I received a few emails from readers that really hit home; the average kiwi angler has never really had the opportunity to get out there and play with a range of equipment... 

 

Turning the Tables - A Downstream Approach

As with much of trout fishing I feel people get too stuck on tradition. Gary Borger once wrote something along the lines of  “the best thing about tradition is the knowledge handed down. But the worst thing about tradition is also the knowledge handed down.”

 

 

 Hot Spot Flies   

Anglers are forever looking for ways to give themselves the edge over trout, and one of the most popular ways is in fly development...

 

 

Dealing with the wind 

 If you find trouble fishing in the wind, then chances are you have had a very frustrating season thus far.

This doesn’t need to be so. With a few simple techniques, and some basic, good form fly casting, we are about to make your life a whole lot easier...

 

An Introduction to SWITCH

Many people find the larger waters of the Clutha, and similar sized rivers rather daunting over winter. Unlike the months of summer, when fish will readily respond to dries, they now lie deep in the holes, and move very little to feed. Heavy nymphs and larger streamers are called for to elicit a strike, but prove difficult to cast on conventional fly gear...

 

Effective Grubbing 

Its that time of the year where the lowland streams come alive with rising trout. As the day warms up rivers come to life, with avidly feeding fish in the feedlanes in, around and below the willows. Can these fish be caught - yes they certainly can, although specialist flies, casts and a different approach are required...  

 

 

Double Up

  It had been a while since out last fish, although it's memory was still fresh in our minds. A beautifully marked brown touching 4 pounds in the net had engulfed my friends emerger without hesitation, the strike true and the battle inevitable...

 

 

Swingin Wets for Winter Rainbows

I follow a number of steel heading forums and converse with a number of avid steelhead anglers. Steelhead are simply sea - run rainbow trout which return to freshwater to spawn after 2 - 3 years living at sea. Although the same species,I find that whilst in NZ we do not have any true steelhead strains (NZ rainbows arent generally known for visiting the salt), our rainbows exhibit similar behaviour when moving to their spawning grounds from lakes, and within larger river systems themselves...

 

 

Better Nymphing

Over the course of a season I am fortunate enough to experience a wide variety of waters and observe a large number of anglers, weather from the guides’ perspective or as a mate, sharing a day on the river with another. Some are absolute greenhorns, whilst others rank amongst the countrys top fly fishermen. Watching others teaches you a lot, whether they are gun anglers or absolute beginners, there’s something to learn from every approach....

 

 

Chasing Trophy Trout 

So you wanna catch a 10lb trout? I ask you - are you prepared to accept a blank day?

Double digit fish are not an every day occurance. In fact, many locals go a lifetime without catching one. There are many tales of the one that got away, and fact or fiction, these are always good for getting us coming back for more...

 

Reach Casting

You can learn to combat drag in most fishing situations in only 10 minutes. I can teach you now! Even absolute beginners can learn both the foundation casting stroke, and slack line presentations right this minute!

The secret is learning to reach. Follow me...

 

Tailing Loops 

Wind knots – Those little figure 8’s which appear in ones leader, just when we don’t want them. We’ve all had them. Truth is, wind plays a very little part in their creation.

The cause of the dreaded wind knot is the tailing loop...

 

Ten Tips For Anglers Visiting New Zealand 

A compilation of handy tips for those visiting NZ, told in Chris' straight shooting style.

 

Kiwi Nymphing: Chris' insight

New Zealand trout streams do not possess the sheer numbers of aquatic invertebrates found in most North American waters. With the exception of the famous Mataura River in Southland, trout do not have much opportunity to lock onto just one food source–they must take what comes by or they simply may not eat...

 

 

 

 

 

Chris' flyblog - NZ's most informative insight on local trout fishing tactics, conditions and events.