Near Tongariro Lodge
Fly fishing for New Zealand's trout often requires skills and techniques
unfamiliar to many trout fishermen. Anglers who have fished the flats for
bonefish will adapt more quickly. Most New Zealand trout are taken while
quietly stalking heron-like along the river's edge. Searching water clear as
crystal for any tale-tale hint of trout.
Anglers rely heavily on the well trained eyes and experiences of their
professional guide. The top New Zealand guides know the very best waters and
which stretches hold the best fish.
Accuracy in casting in essential. Anglers should tone up their skill prior to
going to New Zealand. Here you carefully stalk, mostly from the bank, though
sometimes while wading, with your guide spotting fish for you.
Trout may show as a head on a light rock, perhaps a movement or flash,
maybe a shadow out of place, a color variation, or the dark line of a tail. Spotting
takes a practiced eye. Poloroid sun glasses are an absolute must for every
The advantage of clear water makes spotting fish possible, but it is also a
major handicap. Get rid of colored vests and red shirts and white hats. Don't
show up with a fluorescent yellow or orange fly lines. Light and bright should be
replaced with dull and unobtrusive. Wear a wide brimmed green or brown hat
and vest, and use only dull brown, green or gray lines.
Every kind of fly fishing adventure is possible in New Zealand. Including
exclusive fishing lodges or simple bed and breakfasts. Or fishing trains to
live-aboard yachts for blue-water fishing.
Fly fishers soon become addicted to New Zealand style trout stalking, and
quickly fall under the spell of this beautiful land. Upon returning home they can
only count the days until they return. - ~ MS
(December 29th, 1997)
Traveling Smart Overseas
There are a number of things you can do to avoid problems in overseas
travel. Here are some suggestions to make your next major overseas trip easy
Starting at home, before you even start packing your bags, make sure you
have several photocopies of your passport. If you don't have a passport, you
must apply for one, at your local post office at least 6 weeks in advance of your
trip. (An expedited passport can be obtained at your closest Federal Building
with an additional charge.)
A photocopy of your passport should be strategically placed in each different
item of luggage; i.e, overnight kit, each suitcase, rod case etc. If you lose your
passport or it is stolen, you can get a replacement almost immediately if you
have a copy of it.
As you pack, make sure to bring a sewing kit, lots of film (which may be
difficult to find later) sun screen and insect repellent (also hard to find in some
places), and a small ziplock bag of detergent to wash your personal items like
underwear and socks.
It's also a good idea to pack some little snacks in your carry-on bag. You
never know when you'll get the chance to eat. (New Zealand border control
is very strict on incoming fruit and bee products - for reasons of prevention of
introducing unwanted pests.)
Other items you don't want to leave home without are: English/Spanish or
English/French dictionary, (NZ is an English speaking country of course.)
Pepto Bismol and Kaopectate (or other good anti-diarrhea medicine), an
extra pair of glasses, and sun glasses.
If you take prescription medications, make sure you have an adequate
supply of them in their original containers. Many doctors and pharmacies will
dispense extra medications if they know you are going on a trip.
Many people need to be reminded; pack lightly. Remember if you are
moving around a lot and have many bags (or heavy bags) you will get tired of
dealing with them very quickly.
If you are flying on small planes, there are usually weight restrictions. The
small plane operators will want you to use soft luggage such as duffel bags.
Before you get to the airport, make sure you have plenty of small bills to use
for tips, etc. When you check your bag at the curb, those with dollar bills
showing in their grubby mitts get served fast and efficiently. The norm is usually
a dollar a bag. Note, tipping is not a custom used in NZ.
You also want to make sure you have at least $50.00 of coin of the realm; i.e,
local currency. If you are heading for New Zealand, that would be New Zealand
dollars etc. You can exchange money at the airport, but the best exchange rates
are most often in banks. Shop around for the most competitive rates.
You may wish to wear a money belt or chest pouch to keep your main money
stash and passport. Women should not carry purses over their shoulder. Carry it
over your head and shoulder. Don't keep your passport in your purse, use a
Everyone should always be aware of pickpockets. If your bag is over your
neck, it is not so easy to yank off your shoulder if someone goes running by you
on foot or perhaps on a bike. Men, keep your wallets in your front pocket. A
rubbberband stretched around your wallet could save more than the day.
On the plane, it is a must to always know the closest exit to your seat. If the
isle is crowded with people and you need to get out, climb over the seat!
Remember, the closest exit may be behind your seat, not in front!
While you have so much time on the plane, you have the perfect opportunity
to make a 'cheat sheet' for the money exchange for the country you are visiting.
If the New Zealand dollar is worth $.63 in the U.S., then make up a sheet that
tells you quickly how much five dollars is, 10, 15, etc. That way when you are
shopping in a store and want to know the translation for a price, just refer to your
sheet that you keep in your wallet.
When you are back at the airport preparing to depart for home, there is
often a departure tax leaving most countries. Make sure you have cash to pay as
much as $30 -$40 for such a tax. The departure tax in new Zealand for example
is $20.00 NZ.
Finally, and very important, make sure you have left a copy of your itinerary
with other family members or friends not traveling with you. If there is an
emergency at home they will be able to contact you.
At Angler's Passport, we always make
sure that we give two itineraries to each traveler so they can leave one at
home. We furnish our clients with the most complete final documents
consisting of a personalized itinerary, travel vouchers, wallet, tickets,
a complete list of phone numbers for all the places they will stay,
addresses of the accommodations, and whatever is necessary to make
the package as complete as it can be.
When people book their air travel with us as well as the ground packages,
we are always aware if there are any changes in the flights. We can adjust their
arrangements if necessary to accommodate them in case of delays or
cancellations. You won't find a more complete package anywhere.
Traveling is fun, so be prepared for your trip and make your plans well in
advance to ensure the best trip you can have. A smart traveler is a safe traveler.
~ Mary Smiley
Our guide to international travel is Mary E. Smiley. Some of you may
already know her by her 'screen name' of Ladyflyfsh, Lady, or Soft Hackle.
Mary has fished New Zealand, the photo of her with the dandy trout was
taken on her last trip there. She is an avid fly fisher, and would rather fish
than work. Her work however is directly related to fishing.
Mary arranges fishing trips for anglers all over the world. For information on
any overseas destinations, you can reach her at
Angler's Passport in Twin Bridges Montana. Phone number: 800-440-2699.