In this Week’s Video of the Week, we had the pleasure of Chatting with Alex Waller (@Trippin on Trout) about his most recent video as well as just the overall fly fishing scene in New Zealand. We discussed the untouched streamer potential and just the overall differences in our everyday approach to our rivers. In his most recent video Alex targets big aggressive rainbows on a single-hand Spey setup. Make sure to check out the video to see some epic takes and some sweet kyped up bows.
From chatting about his Spey setup to the differences in the North Island and South Island fisheries we covered some super fun topics. Alex and I were able to dive deeper into some questions about the fishery and his guiding routine. Check out some of his answers below.
Flylords: How is the streamer fishing in New Zealand versus over here in the states?
Alex: “It’s not often that we break out streamers or buggers, really. I always have them in my pack but for me it’s always been one of those situations where I’d tell myself “I will come back and fish a streamer through that.” but then by the end of the day I just want to get to the car and it doesn’t happen. Not many people do it here, its weird, it’s like people get stuck on what works and don’t deviate from that technique. We get a few of the older guys who will use a wet fly and swing it but it’s pretty rare.” I really want to give it a shot because no ones doing it out here. To be honest I really have no idea what or how these fish would react to some of the streamer patterns you guys fish in the states but I really want to give it a shot.”
Flylords: With most your days guiding do you find it hard to keep fishing “fresh”?
Alex: “The New Zealand guiding season is pretty short, its basically a November to April game. So you have to fit a years worth of trips in a compacted amount of time if you want to make that years wage. I have felt the burnout creeping in and when I felt that I stopped. I know guys that from the moment the season opens to the moment the season ends, they are running trips. At that point they don’t even want to look at a rod let alone fish. So I’ve always been aware of it. When I first moved to New Zealand I loved sky diving and turned it into my job. Then when I turned into my job and all I did was work jumps I ended up just hating it. Someone would bail or there would be a free spot to go do a jump for fun and I’d say hell no. Fishing is my happy place and I would do anything to keep it that way. Unlike most guides in the states who run trips out of an outfitter the guides out here are all solo and can dictate their schedules. I’m not great at guiding because I’ll work for a week and then take 4-5 days to go fish for myself haha!”
Flylords: What plans do you have upcoming, any trips?
Alex: “Well as of right now I kind of am limited due to what’s going on in the world, I know Australia just closed their borders and had another spike there. But I’d love to get out over to the states when the opportunity does present itself. For this upcoming year thought I’ve got a South Island trip planned for November, I’ve got some areas that I’ve been looking at on maps that I really want to check out. In terms of some local stuff there’s some really unique offerings out here. We have flats that Kingfish will go up onto and we can sight fish for those, But I’ve got a buddy by the name of J.E Wilds and we’ve been talking about trying to get a Kingfish on the fly from the rocks. Which would be the first time anyone’s ever done that. So lots of cool stuff planned, so keep an eye out for that content!”
Huge shoutout to Alex for taking the time to chat, looking forward to the next one.
Check out these epic articles also!
Building the Stoke in New Zealand – an Interview with Guide Alex Waller
Video of the Week: Trippin on Trout’s Mission to find an Un-Fished River