Fly Fishing South Island New Zealand

Fly fishing on the South island of New Zealand is mostly about fishing to sighted fish. As a result of this, you donít need to be able to cast the entire fly line, indeed 25 to 35 feet is the average distance we fish.

We recommend a 5 or 6 weight rod – the action should suit your casting style. Your rod should be paired with a wide arbour reel thatís equipped with a good drag system – this is vital as it aids you in landing your fish of a lifetime!

The fly line should be a dull/dark coloured floating weight forward line, paired with a 12 > 15 foot leader (Yes, that long !).
Combine this with 4, 5 & 6 lb tippet – we recommend RIO. Owen River Lodge is an Authorised Sage dealer and as a result has almost the entire Sage line up for our guests to try and use – all included in our tariff.
Please use this as a check list of gear to bring.
fly fishing equipment South Island Rivers New Zealand
Fly rods
5>6 weight is ideal. If you have both bring them along. That way you can have the 5 weight rigged as a dry fly rod and the 6 weight rigged for Nymphing

Fly reels
To suit your rod, make sure your reel has a really good drag system and at least 50 meters of backing
Due to the clarity of the rivers we fish; long leaders are essential – 12 or 13 foot 8lb (3x) tapered leaders are ideal

Fly Lines
Most anglers use a weight forward, floating line. Dull in colour - green being ideal.

4, 5 and 6 pound fluorocarbon and/or nylon, we use Rio & Umpqua 

Royal Wulff
Fishing vest
With floatant, clippers, forceps (The best tool for removing flies from the large trout you are going to catch)

Parachute Adams Flies
Some Kiwi favourites are:

Dry – Parachute Adams, Standard Adams, Blow Fly, General Terrestrial and Cicadas

Nymphs - Hare and Copper, Pheasant Tail, and some small tungsten bead heads (size 12>18)
If you are using one of our guides, they will be happy to provide suitable flies. New Zealand customs will be very unhappy if you bring fly tying feathers with you. Save yourself the hassle and leave all fly tying equipment at home.

Wading Boots
To assist the minimisation of the transmission of water based invasive pests, the New Zealand government has now banned the use of felt soled boots. We recommend you bring Rubber soled or Rubber/ carbine spiked fishing boots. Simms distributes 2 models of Vibram (sticky rubber) wading boots which are ideal.
Lightweight Waders
Gore-Tex type is ideal for early/late season. In the warmer months most Kiwis wade wet. All you need is a pair of lightweight nylon shorts over polypropylene underwear bottoms and your boots. An even better product than polypropylene is Kiwi Merino Wool thermal underwear leggings/bottoms. We never leave home without them!

Good quality polarised sun or prescription glasses, woollen socks, wide brimmed hat or baseball cap, windproof pullover/fleece

And a good quality hooded rain jacket – a dull colour is best

Equipment for Sale
The lodge has a good selection of flies, tippet material, leaders, fly lines,  polarised sun glasses, Columbia fishing shirts, pants & wading jackets for sale. As an Authorised sage Dealer, we stock and sell Sage rods & reels.

Fly fishing equipment for sale in Murchison New Zealand
Loan Equipment
The lodge has a selection of premium fly fishing equipment for our guests to use free of charge.

fly fishing equipment South Island New Zealand
  • Simms Guide & Rivershed fishing boots with AquaStealth & Vibram soles w/carbine studded – Size 5 up to size 14!
  • Simms Guide & G3 Stocking foot Gore-Tex waders - sizes from small ladies to extra large king size!
  • Simms Gore-Tex Rain wading jacket
  • Sage 5, 6 & 7 Weight – 4 piece Fly Rods w/ Wide arbour Sage Reels

fly fishing equipment South Island New Zealand
We recommend you call/email us before you arrive, just to make sure we have your size available.
fly fishing equipment South Island New Zealand
Owen River Lodge has a 5 star quality rating from New Zealand tourism quality agency Qualmark
Owen River Lodge
New Zealandís finest 5 star rated fly fishing lodge
Owen Valley East Road, Murchison
Nelson, South Island, New Zealand
Tel: +64 3 523 9075