South Island Work and Fish Trip


I have just returned from traveling to Cedar Lodge, Chris and Shauna’s new home and business on the South Island of New Zealand. I was greeted by beautiful weather, warm accommodations and large trout right out front of the lodge. Each day I found myself staring out at the mountains that surround the lodge in the stunning Makarora valley.

cedar lodge paddock

I arrived about 10 days before the first guests and our main focus was preparing the lodge for their arrival. We spent the first few days rebuilding and painting the 20 year old deck. Soon we were ready for a break headed out for an afternoon fish.

fly fishing for trout on New Zealands south island at cedar lodge

backcountry fly fishing at cedar lodge new zealand

My first cast in the Southern hemisphere I landed this 4 pound brown trout. The rest of the day we spotted and landed several rainbows from 2-4 pounds.


For the next week we spent most mornings working on projects around the lodge and then spending our afternoons hiking around a few of the many rivers in the area. We fished mostly large Parachute Adams and Royal Wulffs with or without a
small dropper. Rods of choice were the Sage One 590 and the new Method 590, which was nice when the wind picked up.

A few days before my departure the chopper showed up! We quickly got our gear and jumped in for an afternoon trip. I had never been in a helicopter so the ride and views blew me away. The fishing in the remote systems was more of the same, stunning rainbows and browns up to 5 pounds, willing to crush the well presented fly.

All said it was an amazing adventure and I can’t wait to go back.


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