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Distinctive Fishing Experiences FAQ:

Common Questions About Trout Fishing with Mark Wallace

Got questions about Mark Wallace’s New Zealand trout fishing experiences? We’ve put together a list of answers to common questions. Have a look and contact us if answers here don’t cover the questions you have.

Who are your trips suitable for?

DFE guiding fishing trips are for experienced anglers and assume that you know your way around a rod. (See Fish Jet for fun Waiau river jet boat fishing adventures for novice anglers and families.)

How many people can you take?

Standard trips are designed for 6 anglers but we are able to cater for up to 10 in two separate, custom made jet boats.

Does fishing from a jet boat or using a jet boat to reach fishing spots scare the fish?

The fish in the Waiau are forgiving; once the jet boat has moved through an area with trout in it, they settle fast, allowing anglers to fish undisturbed fish pretty quickly. Using a jet boat means we can reach areas that are inaccessible to get to on foot – although unorthodox, it’s a great way to access the best fishing spots of this mighty Fiordland river.

Do we need to know how to fish to do your trip?

Distinctive Fishing Experience trips are designed for people with fishing experience. Mark loves to help people improve their fishing technique but DFE trips are not designed to be a fishing tutorial. Check out our Fish Jet trips, if you’re new to trout fishing or want a fun fishing trip designed to be fun for novice anglers.

Can we bring our children?

Distinctive Fishing Experience trips are designed for people with fishing experience and may not be appropriate for children. If you are looking for a fun fish trip for children and non-fishing adults, check out Mark’s Fish Jet jet boat fishing trips.

Do trips only include the Waiau river?

Your trip could include some time chasing trout on Lake Te Anau or Lake Manapouri and other Fiordland rivers. Just let us know you’d like to include some lake fishing or explore other local rivers. But the fishing is likely to be much more eventful on the Waiau river, our home river … Put it this way: nobody has come back from a Waiau River trip without a smile on their face with DFE.

Do we need to have fishing licences?

Everyone who will be fishing needs a licence. If you don’t already have one, we can arrange day licences. Just tell us know when you book your trip.

Can we take some fish home for dinner?

Mark operates under a strict catch and release policy. Why? The Waiau is well-stocked with Rainbow and Brown Trout and he wants to keep it that way … It’s part of our commitment to preserving the special environment we operate in and sharing it responsibly.

What should we bring?

If you aren’t travelling with your fishing gear, we can kit you out with CD Rods fishing gear. But, assuming you have your gear with you, we can also provide life jackets for the boat trip and everything you will need to catch lots of trout. Beyond that extra kit will vary with the weather but sunglasses, a hat, and a warm jacket are generally a good idea. And don’t forget your camera to prove just how big the fish you caught were.

How long are your standard trips?

You can choose from two fishing trip options:

  1. A half day trip – a morning or afternoon with Mark exploring the Waiau river … great if you are short of time or want to combine a little fishing with another local attractions or activities.
  2. A full-day trip – a day out with Mark river fishing with lunch provided. (Mark has great contacts for local produce)  A full day give you plenty of time to try multiple fishing spots and experience the beauty of Fiordland’s waterways. A day’s fishing you won’t forget in a hurry!

When do you run your trips?

Our trips run daily through the spring-summer fishing season (October to May) at 8.30am and 1.30pm. (This is, of course, subject to prior bookings — book asap to be sure to secure the morning / afternoon / day you want!) We can be flexible with timing… Evening trip? Early morning experience? Contact us, if you would like to arrange a trip outside these normal times.

Can you pick me up from / drop me off at my accommodation?

Yes, we can pick you up from your accommodation. Just let us know where you are staying and we’ll confirm a time.

Speaking of accommodation – where should we stay?

It’s safe to say we know our backyard like the back of our hand – so here’s a list of places to stay in Te Anau and Milford Sound that have awesome access to fly fishing in Fiordland. But don’t hesitate to give us a call if you’re a bit overwhelmed and would like to chat about it.

Are the trips weather dependent?

Barring severe conditions that make a trip impossible — extremely rare — whether we go is up to you. If you are keen, we are happy to take you out whatever the weather … Obviously, this may mean a slightly different experience and require wet weather gear. But rain has never stopped the fun in Fiordland and Distinctive Fishing Experience is no exception.

When will you charge my credit card?

We require a 50% deposit when making your booking, fully refundable if cancellation outside 24 hours or if weather prevents us from going.

What is your cancellation policy?

If you cancel your trip within 24 hours of the time of travel, there is a 100% cancellation fee.  If we agree the weather is not suitable on the day, we will refund you 100%.

What else should we do and see while we’re in Fiordland?

Did you know that world-famous Milford Sound is just down the road from the Waiau? Well, by ‘just down the road’ we mean a couple of hours, but you’ll want to take your time getting there because the drive is mind-blowing. But, take it from us locals – definitely don’t miss it! Here’s a bit of a guide we’ve put together on Visiting Milford Sound. There’s heaps of other things to do too – from epic hiking to visiting Doubtful Sound, click here to learn more.