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West Coast Backcountry Fisheries

The West Coast Fish and Game Region manage two backcountry fisheries: the Karamea and Mokihinui Rivers. Anglers must hold a Backcountry Licence Endorsement in addition to their Fishing Licence to fish these waters.

Karamea River Backcountry Fishery

Open Season: 1 Oct - 30 Apr

Methods: All legal methods (see Schedule One of the Sports Fishing Regulations)

Bag Limit: 2 sports fish

Reach: The Karamea River catchment upstream of the Kakapo River confluence

Access: Access into the Karamea River is either by walking upstream from the Umere or Arapito Road end’s in the lower reaches, or the Wangapeka Road end at the Little Wanganui. Alternatively anglers can tramp in from the Tasman side of the catchment via the Flora carpark or Baton Saddle. Many anglers access the area by helicopter. 

Mokihinui River Backcountry Fishery

Open Season: 1 Oct - 30 Apr

Methods: All legal methods (see Schedule One of the Sports Fishing Regulations)

Bag Limit: 2 sports fish

Reach: The Mokihinui catchment upstream of the confluence with Rough and Tumble Creek

Access: Access into the Mokihinui River Catchment is either from the Mokihinui Road end at Seddonville or walk in access from the Old Ghost Road Track. Many anglers access the area via helicopter. 

Compliance

In terms of compliance, fishing within a Backcountry designated area, without a Backcountry Licence endorsement is considered the same as fishing without a licence. Anglers in these areas without the correct endorsements will be issued with an offence notice. Non-compliance with the new regulations is an offence under the Conservation Act and subject to a maximum fine of NZ$5,000.00.

Monitoring 

It is expected a short web-based questionnaire will be sent to all backcountry licence holders to evaluate their backcountry experience. Please be sure you have provided your correct email address. Your email address will be confidential and is strictly for Fish and Game survey purposes only. West Coast Fish and Game look forward to the co-operation of all anglers and your assistance to help manage this unique fishery for current and future licence holders.

Etiquette for Backcountry Anglers

Respect fellow anglers and remember they arrived at the river with the same expectations as you.

Never ever cut in front of other anglers regardless of how desperate you are to get to the water.

If fishing solo, invite an angler you meet to fish with you or share the available water. You may both learn something.

Use a quality line which strikes a balance between strength and visibility so that fish can be landed smartly. Do not play fish excessively.

When releasing fish, do so with great care and try to keep the fish in the water as much as possible. Avoid touching the fish where possible.

For further information contact us