Hugh’s last chance Mackenzie monster

The scales say it all

I was on a road trip with Mum in early March— Dad was back in Nelson at work—and Invercargill was nice but I was mad keen to get back to the canals. We’d stopped while heading south and I’d caught eight small salmon in the one day, so was desperate for another crack.

Fishing Ohau A close to the outlet, I chopped and changed lures, trying to find what the big fish were after. Mum and I had watched a couple of anglers haul in big fish the day before and I’d pegged this day to be my turn.

It was early evening on our last day so if a big fish was to come my way, it had to happen soon. I decided to set up a fly rod, so gave Mum the spinning set; best to keep a lure in the water. She was busy casting and retrieving the Shimano rod Okuma reel combo with a red, white and blue Daffy Lure on the end.

Suddenly she started screaming, “Help, help, help!”

Hugh lives for fishing

Mum’s happy casting but doesn’t like playing fish because she always loses them, so I raced down and took over. I didn’t know what the fuss was about because it felt like a tiny fish to start with—just bouncing on the end of the line—then it took off, peeling line from my reel. My rod doubled over.

I’d think I had it under control but it would power off again and I started to think I was going to run out of line. It was tense.

Then it leapt clear of the surface and was tail walking. It looked a monster. Now it was exciting.

After a busy 20 minutes I had it close to shore but it was stressful because we only had a short handled net and this was a big fish. Mum was nervous because it was slippery near the ramp and she didn’t want to go for a drink. Luckily, someone lent her a long handled net and, between the two of us, we managed to get the beast ashore.

No way this salmon was going back—at 15.09lb it was my biggest yet. A Mackenzie monster.

We cut it into portions and took it home to eat, bouncing from camping ground freezer to camping ground freezer until we finally hit Nelson. It was delicious and we still have heaps of feeds yet. Meanwhile, I am dreaming of my return to the canals— I’m keen to try night fishing next.

Share this post :


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Create a new perspective on life

Your Ads Here (365 x 270 area)
Latest Stories

Subscribe our newsletter

Subscribe to our newsletter to get the latest updates direct to your inbox.


Subscribe to our newsletter to get the latest updates direct to your inbox.