New Zealand Trip Planning Consultation

new zealand mouse year fly fihsingA trip to New Zealand is a magical experience but it has substantial cost of trip planning & travel time, as well as considerable financial cost. You can search the internet for countless hours and not get answers that you are looking for and still not get a feel of what each region offers. We have traveled to New Zealand the past 13 years for 2 – 3 months each year. We have extensive experience and expertise as a foreigner, what to expect, what the cautions are, what you need to know to have a plan A – Z to maximize your time. 

We get countless emails each year asking for trip planning help because people know our expertise & vast experience. We have faithfully & diligently provided information to help anglers plan details of travel & fishing in New Zealand. We spend extensive time reading and replying to each person based on their desires and preferences. We’ve provided extensive information to a lot of people who have enjoyed incredible trips. It’s an involved process. We refer $70 to $200K in bookings annually to NZ Professional Guide Association members without their knowing, without collecting any commission.  We do not want to bog our life down collecting commissions nor do we want to tie ourselves to any company – we simply want to share our love & joy of New Zealand and help you do the same. 

If you would like our assistance in planning your travels to the S Island of New Zealand, we now offer a flat, one-time consultation of $150 Canadian. Given the cost of travel, the difficulty in finding specific information from experienced fly fishers, and that our media has likely inspired & led you to making inquiry of us about New Zealand, and that this consulting fee is likely less than 1% of your travel – there is great value in this process. Our advice is likely to confirm some of what you have read & discovered on your own and likely to raise a few things you hadn’t considered. 

Given that you will have a series of questions, we provide opportunity to email upwards of 30 questions specific to your trip. Most people lead with about 15 questions, receive our reply, then come back with 5 or 10 more to clarify or continue conversation. 

Some of your questions that we can help you with include (the following from an international tourist’s perspective): vehicle/camper-van/4×4 rentals; driving information; camping locations; hotel & holiday park information; regional fishing information (not river/watershed specific); monthly weather & water plans; weather trends & cycles and how to observe river flow reports in order escape them; what water types offer what type of fishing;  fly fishing gear & equipment selection; flies – leader – tippet considerations;  what some of the sites are for non-fishing companions; approving & dispelling John Kent’s book; considerations to accommodations; why you need to hire a guide & who to hire regionally; if the fabled mouse years are predicted; arriving in New Zealand & how to deal with Biosecurity; where fly shops are located; how to do further in-depth trip planning; where heli charters are available; regional freedom camping restrictions; Dept of Conservation information for DoC lands; hut locations; dealing with sandflies; food considerations; seasonal influxes of tourists and general times to travel; more.

HOW IT WORKS: If you would like help with the above &/or other thoughts & considerations, our fee is $150 and payable via PayPal. Please email us with your intention. We’ll email you a funds request. Once we receive your funds we will reply. You email us your plans and questions and we reply based on our experiences. 

CLICK HERE TO BEGIN THE PROCESS

We look forward to assisting your trip to the South Island of New Zealand! For those who have emailed us for help but are not willing to respect our time & value, sorry that we’re not a match but have a wonderful trip!

~ Dave & Amelia Jensen

11 thoughts on “New Zealand Trip Planning Consultation

  • November 30, 2014 at 9:52 pm
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    Guys, that was the most honest description of the South Island of NZ I have ever read. A few years ago I did a DIY for 3 weeks, and after reading your recap, can’t really think of anything to add.
    Refreshing!
    Cheers
    Chad

    Reply
    • December 1, 2014 at 12:03 am
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      Thanks & glad you enjoyed. 🙂

      Reply
  • December 2, 2014 at 5:56 am
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    Hey Dave, hope all is going well with your trip and the weather is improving. I read this very interesting post and shook my head a few times with your bright lines and clothes rationale. My thing is always why buy bright shirts and caps that are suitable MOST of the time when a dull colored one will suit ALL conditions. I read your recent post where you both put jackets on to cover your bright shirts, don’t quite get the defending of bright shirts that guides recommend against while admitting they need covering some times… Bright lines are the same – 90% of the time you could get away with orange but faced with a necessary side on cast with a beech backdrop in slick water… High line flash. Same again – go dull to cover ALL options. Leader lengths will vary but i’ve seen guys land 14footers like thistledown on a 4wt and the lateral lines lights up and fish gone – solved with a 20footer keeping the flyline way way back. Just the opinion of a hard working guide sick of people with half of your very obvious skill expecting to use gear that oftn spooks fish. I see it so often that i know what can change the game. Dull stealthy and soft presentation. Love your work though and remember you are the exception to a lot of rules as you counter the less than ideal with a high degree of skill…

    Reply
  • December 5, 2014 at 2:53 am
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    Heya Mike. Thanks for the note. The weather our way is ok and settling a touch. It’s an interesting thing. As you know, there is a difference between anglers – and guides seldom see the most experienced (if our experience rings true). Trying to blend our experience in text vs your realities of a guide are quite complex. We’d agree, I’m sure, that if you know how to fish and approach well, protect the edge on your approach and cast, and understand what browns will likely do in response before making a cast, browns are painfully predictable 97% of the time – and away you go. But most folks well over-estimate their abilities and knowledge and read a write up like the one you commented on and think they can get away without doing the things you suggest. The big thing is that we simply don’t think of ourselves as anything special. Maybe we have a little skill but honestly our knowledge, experience, and anticipation cover up our skill short-comings. The reality is that it’s simply fishing and the weight of the world isn’t on each fish. The fish we want, sure, we get quite keen, but we’d rather do it our way than worry about image, frankly. And sitting in your position as a guide, I’m sure you see what we write and see that we know what we’re doing but are screaming that your typical guest doesn’t, and needs to do as you suggest or their result will be much different than ours. Get that, but we’re only sharing from where we sit – as non-guides now! 🙂 There are a boat load of angles, aren’t there? 🙂 Cheers!

    Reply
  • July 28, 2016 at 8:03 pm
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    I’m planning a trip to NZ and this is extremely helpful! Thanks

    Reply
  • August 2, 2017 at 3:01 pm
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    Just stumpled upon your site and had to read the NZ section. Probably one of the best – no BS – descriptions/explanations I’ve read on the net. Wish it had been there 15 years ago, when I visited first time with my head full of all sorts of misconceptions. Been down there seven times now and looking forward to number eight. 🙂 Cheers

    Reply
    • August 2, 2017 at 4:34 pm
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      Great to hear! Hopefully it helps a few more folks. We’ll have to update it some more here soon. Some more changes happening on the E side of the S Island.

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      • August 2, 2017 at 6:46 pm
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        Yeah, in all honesty I think it is fair to say that all sorts of challenges are piling up around a lot of the NZ fisheries. But arguably it’s still one of the worlds premier trout destinations.

        Reply
  • September 18, 2017 at 9:48 pm
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    I was just speaking to Dave Blair regarding a possible trip I may have to Christchurch in February. I know its very short notice to book a guide but this trip is very much up in air. Regardless if it does happen I will have 5 days to fish while my wife will be working. I was hoping you would be able to point me in the right direction as far as hiring a guide (preferably for a backcountry 3-4 day trip). From what I have read I understand that the Nelson area is good for this. Due to the short notice if I can’t hire a guide, do you have any suggestions on where I would be able to go without getting to far off the beaten path, last thing my wife needs to hear is foreigner gets lost in the back country of New Zealand chasing big browns. As far as fishing goes, I used to work for Dave so I can hold my own as far reading water etc. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks
    Craig

    Reply
    • September 19, 2017 at 12:01 am
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      Congrats on heading to NZ. 🙂 We’ll be there some time again this year, yay! 🙂 I know this is going to sound like a homer but my friend Serge Bonnafoux out of Hanmer Springs, about 90 minutes NW of CHCH does offer EXACTLY what you want. His area is south of the Nelson region and offers exactly, literally to a “T” what you are looking for. Look up http://www.fishnewzealand.com 🙂 RE: if everything craps out and you can’t find a guide… literally book a motel and just get up early and go on big walks after taking your rented 4×4 into the back country. You almost can’t go wrong finding a river with fish. Spotting them in various water types and knowing what rivers to avoid due to flood, drought, drop out… that’s where the guides pay their guests back in spades. 🙂

      Reply
      • September 19, 2017 at 4:01 am
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        Thanks so much really appreciate it,

        Reply

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