2017 Kilwell Lower Waikato River trout comp

Kilwell Lower Waikato river trout contest 2017- October 7th to 15th.


2017 contest Entry form

This year

Results for the April 2017 Top Ten trout competition


  1. st ($75 package) Keith Handley (Huntly) .514 kg brown (47.65 condition)
  2. nd ($70 package) Tahlia Rendall Jnr (Ohinewai) 1.51 kg brown (47.88 condition)

3rd ($65 package) Graham Mc Haffie (Hamilton) 1.490 kg rainbow

4th ($60 package) Steven Sharpe (Hamilton) 1.468 kg brown (48.56 condition)

5th ($55 package) Richard Wagstaff (Hamilton) 1.346 rainbow (54.45 condition)

6th ($50 package) Steven Sharpe (Hamilton) 1.278 brown (he donated this prize to Cory Burt Jnr)

7th ($45 package) Keith Handley (Huntly) 1.260 kg brown

8th ($40 package) Levi King Jnr (Hamilton) 1.098 brown

9th ($35 NZ Fishing News sub) David Geelen Jnr (Waingaro) 1.078 brown (52.57 condition)

10th ($30 NZ Fishing News sub) Graham Mc Haffie (Hamilton) .818 kg rainbow (48.69 condition)


(11th ) David Geelen Jnr (Waingaro) .776 kg brown


Keith Handley (who presented the 1st and last trout at the weigh-ins), donated his prizes back to the next competition, thanks Keith.


The junior spot prizes from Sweetman’s Reel Fishin’ were distributed to all juniors whether they presented a trout or not- caps from Holiday Fishing and lures donated by Plant Talk, plus other items.


The big prize of the evening was the mystery weight prize, 3 numbers were drawn out randomly on the night and they were 0 8 5, the nearest trout weight with those final 3 digits was David Geelen’s of 1.078, so he popularly received the prize of a quality 8’ canal spin rod combo, retail value $184.


2 good raffles were run at the prizegiving, the 1st prize Okuma 7’ boat rod combo was won by Tahlia Rendall, with the 2nd draw snapper tackle pack won by Samantha King.


The $100 meat pack raffle supplied by The Meat Co. Huntly had 3 draws, 1st Mike Lynch, 2nd Steven Sharpe, 3rd Ocean Leigh Hughes.


Many thanks to the sponsors, contestants and families, for making this first experiment a great competition.


The following sponsors made the competition possible, so please support them…


Sweetman’s Reel Fishin’, Taupiri Tavern, NZ Fishing News, NZ Holiday Fishing, Chatter Newspaper, North Waikato News, Plant Talk, A/W Fish & Game, Huntly Meat Co., Your Cambridge News, Paul McIsaac (Flooring First, Manukau).


2016 Waikato River trout contest

Kilwell 2016 Lower Waikato river trout contest results.


The Kilwell Lower Waikato river trout contest was again a great family event, this year the 9 day long contest attracted 47 keen experienced anglers from Cambridge to Te Kauwhata, the same as the 2015 numbers. With 14 juniors under 17 and 33 adults including 5 in the women’s section, there was strong competition for the $7,000 plus in prizes (sponsored by locals, corporates, businesses and WDC), which also included the teams and ladies section. Kilwell NZ featured strongly in the prize selection and were a valuable sponsor, the remainder was mainly sourced from Sweetman’s Reel Fishing Huntly store.


The river was swollen at a high level throughout the 8 ½ day contest run from Saturday October 1st to Sunday October 9th, but this didn’t deter the keen anglers, resulting in a surprising 114 trout caught, with 108 being browns and 6 rainbow trout. For the number of entries and river condition this is a great result. This compares with 125 caught in 2015, 112 caught in 2013, 97 caught in 2012, 126 in 2011. The river was bordering flood warning throughout, but apart from wind and a few showers there were reasonably good conditions otherwise.


With the contest area being as usual the main stem of the Waikato from below the Karapiro dam to the Waikato heads, the fish were caught from Karapiro dam to Mercer, and many of the locals expanded their normal haunts in view of the conditions as they searched out the sea-run browns chasing the annual whitebait migration. This year, a majority of fish (by numbers) were caught in the Huntly (32), Hamilton (26), Cambridge (15) and Rangiriri (15) areas. Next were Karapiro(9), Ohinewai (8), Ngaruawahia (7), Taupiri (1), Hopuhopu (1) & Mercer(1).


This year again some bigger and more conditioned fish were in the Cambridge locale, but Huntly areas also produced good fish, and accounting for 32 fish from the total deserve the title of “Brown trout central”. While most of the fish were caught from shore, many anglers used their boats to access new areas or fish from their anchored boat. Condition of fish remained good but size was down slightly this year probably due to the flooded aspect. Many anglers released any under size and low condition fish during the week.


This is a top spin fishery, and a simple spinning rod with the right tackle will deceive the fish, but this year the most popular terminal tackle by far was still softbaits (57%) , followed by worm or bait (19%), then spinners (12%), large wet flies with splitshot (6%), lastly lures eg tassie devils/rapalas(3%).


Most trout were caught early morning or at dusk and into the evening, but a surprising amount were also taken in the middle of the day. The more successful anglers targeted the very edge of the river, using short casts or even just trailing a lure off the rod tip to probe likely brown trout lies behind and under cover, along banks with good current. From analysis of the total catch data this year, the average trout in this area weighs about 1.1kg, and has a condition factor of 40, which is a nicely coloured trout. Worm fishing was highly successful this year in the flooded conditions, but usually produced smaller fish. Towards the end of the contest there was a noticeable move to softbaits.


The contest has been coordinated since early this year, and John Charteris, Peter Sweetman, Michael Lynch, William Van Zyl , Bob Gamble, Sharnay Cocup, and Steve and Tracey Farrar were the committee in charge. Weigh stations were at Sweetman’s Reel Fishin’ in Huntly, Taupiri Tavern in the evenings, plus Waikato Hunting & Fishing in Te Rapa and also Sportsworld Cambridge.


Our trout methods booklet for the Waikato river (revised and reprinted) was circulated around the weigh stations, these are available in pdf form on the Auckland/Waikato Fish & Game website.


Competition started in earnest at 5am on the Saturday 1st Oct. During the 9 days fish were weighed in steadily, with numbers from the first weekend providing plenty of excitement with 45 weighed.


The committee held a contest party with live music at Taupiri Tavern on the Saturday night before prizegiving, many thanks to Steve Farrar, Mike Lynch, Nigel Roberts and Greg Allen for some great music!


The prize giving was held at Taupiri Tavern on Sunday 18th in the garden bar, and free barbecue provided by owner Bob Gamble, plus smoked trout dip from Mike Geelen and some cold smoked trout from Steve Farrar kept the crowd happy.


Kevin Hutchinson spoke for Waikato RiverCare, who had supplied a large amount of potted native trees as prizes. These were very popular with everyone, and will be planted along selected river and stream edges. RiverCare caps were also popular.


This year we again had a wide ranging prize selection of fishing and related products, plus oodles of spot prizes including fishing combos, nets, caps, bags, torches, binoculars, lures and tackle packs.



Results for the 2016 competition;


Juniors (14 entries, 22 fish caught)


1st heaviest brown trout- Cooper O’Hara (Huntly) 1.748 kg- $250 package

2nd heaviest brown trout- Dylan Farrar (Huntly) 1.676 kg- $150 package

3rd heaviest brown trout- Chase Baranyai 1.538 kg- $100 package

Heaviest Rainbow- David Geelen (Waingaro) .938kg- $100 package

Best condition factor trout- Tahlia Rendall (Huntly) 44.69 condition factor, $250 package.


In the juniors, the average weight fish was 1.045kg, nearest was Flynn Rendall of Ohinewai with an exact 1.000 kg trout, he was the happy recipient of a $250 package, sponsored by Huntly Fish Game and Clay Target Club.


Ladies (5 entries, 15 trout caught)


Heaviest trout- Tracey Farrar (Huntly) 1.714 kg $200 package

Best condition factor trout- Hayley Hughes (Taupiri) 44.76 condition factor $100 package



Adults (33 entries, 92 trout caught)


1st heaviest brown trout- Graham McHaffie (Hamilton) 2.305 kg $350 package

2nd heaviest brown trout- Rob Warne (Cambridge) 2.290 kg $250 package

3rd heaviest brown trout- Mike Geelen (Waingaro) 2.204 kg $100 package

Heaviest rainbow trout- Mike Geelen (Waingaro) 1.338 kg $200 package

Best Condition Factor rainbow- Mike Geelen (Waingaro) 47.75 factor, $200 package


Best condition factor brown trout adults section- Rob Warne (Cambridge) 57.17 condition factor. He won a major prize of a $500 sporting voucher to be redeemed at Sweetman’s Reel Fishin’. This is co-sponsored by Sweetman’s and Taupiri Tavern. Steven Sharpe was a close second with a 56.5 factor fish.


Kotare Ventures Best Condition Factor overall trophy- Presented for the fifth time, the stunning trophy donated by Kotare Ventures was won by Rob Warne.



Team Section

The 4 person teams section drew 5 entries, with Steve Farrar’s “Flyz R Down” weighing 4, Clive Poultney’s “Flying Fush” 6, Jeremy Johnson’s “Trout Ticklers” 2, Sharnay Cocup’s “Mangawara Catfish” team 8, and Michael Lynch’s team “Hack n’ Flash” 9. To qualify, team fish had to have a condition factor of 36 or above.


The prizes are for the best average weight of the total fish caught per team, with the prizes going to-


Team Section 1st – Flying Fush (Hamilton) - Average weight 1.724 kg, $500 prize of 4 x $125 packages


Team Section 2nd – Trout Ticklers (Cambridge) - Average weight 1.634 kg, $200 prize of 4 x $50 packages


Rest of teams in order- Flyz R down averaged 1.393, Hack n’ Flash averaged 1.216, Mangawara Catfish 0.539 kg.


Average adults weight trout Grand prize-$1,000 in vouchers- a $500 Prezzy card plus $500 voucher from Sweetmans Reel Fishin’ Huntly.


The average weight trout in this year’s competition for the adults section was 1.122 kg, and the closest angler with a 1.126 kg trout was Steven Sharpe of Hamilton, a good result for his big efforts. Graham McHaffie and Steve O’Hara were also close to this mark.


Ten $100 “novelty” packages of assorted tackle were given to Keith Handley, Sharnay Cocup, Skye Gamble, Helen Geelen, Sam Van der Valk, Gianni Leef, Keinnan Wilson, Nicola McHaffie, Porky Hayward & Brian Taplin. These were for a variety of great incidents/stories during the competition.


Two donated prizes were balloted for- Flash Flooring donated a $300 Samsung tablet, this was drawn by Damian Cocup, and the Stoney Creek clothing pack of $100 was won by Porky Hayward.


The many remaining spot prizes from Sweetman’s Reel Fishin’ were then distributed- bags from BNZ, caps from Stoney Creek, Holiday Fishing and Waikato RiverCare, knives and other items.


2 good raffles were run at the prizegiving, the 1st prize Shimano Baitrunner combo was won by Shirley Farrar, and the meat pack raffle donated by The Meat Co had 3 draws, 1st Jake Farrar, 2nd Margaret Clarke, 3rd Henni Houia.


Many thanks to all the sponsors, contestants and families, for making it such a wonderful competition.


Also thanks to all the committee for their hard work, especially John Charteris.

John liased with the weigh stations and kept the records updated, distributed the posters and flyers, set up the banner in Ngaruawahia, handled nearly all of the 9 weigh-ins at Taupiri, and was the general team leader.


Graham Bowen was vital with the results formulas on final day- spreadsheeting and computer work, well done.


Peter Sweetman and team liased with Kilwell, picked and packed some outstanding prizes for the competition, and handled some weigh station duties at Huntly. He also supplied many of his own product range at significant discounts and stocked a great range of freshwater tackle for the locals to buy, and displayed the big banner on his Main Rd frontage. Thanks too to the staff of Sweetman’s, Peter Fletcher, Margaret Taplin and especially Sharon Mackie for handling the entries and finances (and sponsorship via Graham’s Plant Talk)


William Van Zyl was official photographer and committee member, and has uploaded his wonderful images to our Facebook page- https://www.facebook.com/lowerwaikatotroutfishingcontest2016/

All of the competition images are there.


Michael Lynch produced posters and entry forms, handled email lists, PR and paper publication.


Sharnay Cocup, Steve and Tracey Farrar were a big help on the day with raffles, prize decisions and general help, plus good for new input at meetings. Steve also played a major role in the Fingerlings band on Saturday night, while Tracey and Sharnay found new sponsors.


Bob Gamble and his team took care of the venue preparation & barbecue at the Taupiri Tavern prizegiving and hosted us very well, including the nightly weigh-ins.


Our outside weigh station venues need a big vote of thanks- Sportsworld Cambridge & Waikato Hunting & Fishing (Logan Baxter).


Many thanks to the great media coverage we have had from local papers, Jim Richardson at the Chatter, North Waikato News, Sophie Iremonger at Your Cambridge News, this helped publicise the event.


The following sponsors made the competition possible, so please support them…



Gold Sponsors















Silver Sponsors

Waikato District Mayors Fund

Beddis Rivertown Electrical

Troy Garrett Painter

Chatter Newspaper

Metrapanel Systems

Huntly Plumbers



Bronze Sponsors


Waikato Hunting & Fishing Te Rapa

Sportsworld Cambridge

Huntly Lions Club

Huntly Meat Co.

Huntly BNZ

Planet FM (Colin Shepherd)

Dept of Conservation

Waikato times


Plant Talk

Kotare Ventures

Your Cambridge News

The Cambridge Edition

Huntly Club Fishing group

A/W Fish & Game

Fishing & Outdoors Newspaper


Don’t stop fishing, plenty of action on the river from now till early December, then it will fire up again about May or before.


Lower Waikato Trout Contest Committee 2016


John Charteris

Michael Lynch

Peter Sweetman

William Van Zyl

Bob Gamble

Steve Farrar

Tracey Farrar

Sharnay Cocup


2015 Waikato River trout contest

Trout Contest Facebook