How to Catch Trout

how to catch trout - tips from parklands motor lodge

With Trout fishing season in full swing, we thought we'd give you a few tips on how to trout fish. 

Know the rules

Always check with the locals or talk to Fish and Game New Zealand before heading out to catch some trout. It's important to know and follow the rules to keep fish populations healthy, and keep the ecosystem as productive and balanced as possible. Also - it's the law!

Know your equipment

If you're planning on getting out and fishing quite a bit you may want to invest in a good quality fishing rod, line and hooks. But if you're just going for the experience you can find a rod for around $20. Your fishing rod (also known as light tackle) should be between 1 kg and 4 kgs ( 2 to 8 pounds) for river trout, with #6 to #10 hoots, and a 2kg to 4kg (4 to 8 pound) line. Watch this video and learn how to set up your rig.

Find a river!

Not the hardest task in New Zealand, but finding one with trout can be a little bit different. Heading to the National Trout Centre is a great plan. You can learn all about trout and get the inside scoop on the rivers they stock with fish. Or you can visit the Fish and Game website for the rivers and lakes in the area that are perfect for trout fishing. When you find a river be sure you know the rules - some have rules on the type of tackle you can use and bait restrictions. 

If you use bait, attach the split shot weight on the line

"Wait, what's that?" I hear you ask. It's a weight that you attach to the line that allows you to control how fast your bait will drift and lets you cast more effectively. Win, win! This little gem of a weight should be placed about 2 feet above the hook. Be sure to to pinch the weight hard enough so that it will not move on the line. The most popular baits are earthworms, salmon roe and canned corn kernels (odd we know). This great video shows you how to rig the split weight

Always cast slightly upstream

This allows your bait or lure to drift with the current and appear more lifelike. A good rule of thumb is to go 20-50 feet upstream of the visible fish. Most trout face upstream and wait for the food to come to them, so using this technique will get your lure or bait seem by the trout. If you spook the fish, wait about 20 minutes before trying again in that spot. 

Cast away

No, not the Tom Hanks movie (sorry). Again, the direction you want to cast in is up-river, allowing the bait to float on the river current. Cast towards 11 o'clock as you are facing the river. If you're using a lure cast into the same area, but pull the tip of the road back to help get the lure water moving in the river. Now you know where to cast, here's how to cast!

Bring the rod tip behind you slowly, and press and hold the reel with your thumb. Quickly bring the rod tip around to directly in front of you and release . Be careful not to whip the rod too hard and throw your bait off the hook. Watch this video for some hot casting tips.

Lastly, know what you're going to do with the fish. 

Will you release it, or will you keep it?

If it all seems to much, you can always contact a guide. They can show you where to fist, how to fish and are always good for a chat. See a list of guides here. 

So there you have it our top tips for Trout fishing this season - Feel free to share yours on our Facebook page.