The 12th week of fishing for the 2014 season found the Ponoi continuing to ease into fall, with low water levels, mild currents, slowing rapids and a water temperature still in the 12-14 ºC range.
As fall-run salmon continue into the system they are able to ascend with great ease and these conditions mean that Ponoi anglers and guides really have to test their acumen, as the fish are not forced to ‘stack up’ in likely resting places, instead move fluidly through the system. They can, and will, show anywhere and the finest anglers and guides joined forces last week to find them. These avid fishermen went above and beyond to locate fish and entice them to strike flies, and they did so with great skill.
Ponoi anglers last week witnessed many bright fish jumping as they ran upriver, but despite remarkable numbers, the salmon did not take readily. The challenge in situations where conditions don’t slow the running fish is to anticipate where a moving fish will be once the fly is presented. This type of fishing is somewhat like shooting, where the target is ‘led’, and its eventual position anticipated. Despite this obviously challenging scenario, 20 rods averaged 20 fish for the week, with 20% of those being bright fall-run fish.
Last Friday offered up unexpected but much-welcomed rain that lifted the water level by a few inches. On that day, the Father and son duo of Tim and Tom from the UK posted an amazing session by catching a 15lb, a fresh 19lb., and a 21lb leviathan that likely tipped the scales at well over 25lb when it first entered the river. Andy also reported 2 fish over 15lb for the session.
Further rain promises to raise both hopes and water levels, and once again we are looking forward to see how the river performs and the salmon respond. No doubt, in keeping with tradition, it will be an incredible week.
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