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Karangarua River Trout Fishing

The Karangarua River is a large boisterous river that offers the chance to hook and land a well conditioned hard-fighting fish.

 

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Fish type Brown trout
Situation 170kms south of Hokitika and 90kms north of Haast
Setting The Karangarua River is a rain and snow fed river that runs fast and furious to the sea in a remote area of central Westland. The upper reaches run through native bush while the lower reaches can be brackish and tidal as they flow over low lying land before entering the sea.
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Access map
Access map with topography

LINZ topographic maps: 1:50,000 (260 series)

Check conditions View MetService weather forecast for Hokitika.
F&G pamphlet West Coast Sports Fisheries access pamphlet  >>>
Description A fast river with an impressive flow of water (especially early in the season when the snow melts or after one of the frequent heavy rainstorms). The upper reaches flow through some impressive rapids and glides and pools before moving onto the plains about 20kms from its mouth. The water is generally a turquoise colour from the snow melt. This river is prone to flooding and the unstable bed is not the best habitat for trout though some fishing can be had in the headwaters and there is a chance of a good sea-run fish in the lower reaches.
Fish numbers and size Moderate to low numbers in the main river with some sea-run fish in the lower reaches. Mostly in the 3 - 4lb range.
Ease of fishing This is an open and easy river to fish with either fly or spinner.
Access State Highway 6 crosses the river approximately 20kms from its mouth. Access to both upstream and downstream can be gained for many kilometres from here. See the Karangarua River access map.
Recommended lures

Nymphs: Large (sizes 8 -12) weighted nymphs of the Halfback, Hare and Copper or Pheasant Tail are best. Use darker colours in the coloured waters.

Dry flies: Dry flies that are well hackled and well treated to float are the best for this fast water. Try Humpy, large Royal Wulff or Coch-y-Bondhu in sizes 8-12.

Wet flies: Again large darker flies of the Hammill's Killer or Hairy Dog fished through the pools or across the riffles can work well. In the lower reaches try a yellow fly such as a Parson's Glory when the whitebait are running between Oct to Dec.

Spinners: Larger black or green Toby patterns or any dark pattern in the Cobra or Tasmanian Devil type can induce a take. Use lighter coloured minnow type lures in the lower reaches near the sea.

Regulations (1)
Applicable to Karangarua River upstream of State Highway No. 6
Region West Coast >>>
Season Trout: 1 Oct-30 Apr
Salmon: 1 Oct-30 Apr
Methods Artifical fly, spinner, bait
Bag limit Total sports fish: 2
Size limit (cm) No limit
Regulations (2)
Applicable to Karangarua River downstream of State Highway No. 6
Region West Coast >>>
Season

Trout: All year

Salmon: 1 Oct-30 Apr

Methods Artificial fly, spinner, bait
Bag limit Total sports fish: 2
Size limit (cm) No limit

 

 

 

 

 

 

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