Rainbow Trout Fishing

Rainbow Trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss)

Rainbow trout were introduced to New Zealand from North America in the late 1800s for sport fishing.  Although sea run raimbows are found in New Zealand, here at Poronui they inhabit the pristine, well-aerated water of our back country rivers.

Catching Rainbow Trout at Poronui


Rainbow Trout are generally olive-green to steely blue in color with a silvery white belly.  The sides are lighter in color and there are numerous spots over the upper body, head and tail.  The name comes from the pink, red or orange flash along both sides that darkens during spawning.

Rainbows in New Zealand tend to be larger than those found in Australia, growing up to 13kg in rivers and 20kg in lakes.  The more typical fish size caught in the North Island is 2-3 kg and Poronui operates a strict catch and release policy which yields an average catch size of 4-5kg.

Catching Rainbow Trout at Poronui


Rainbow trout have a varied diet. They are predators, eating smaller fish from nearly the time they are born. Insects make up a large portion of the diet, along with crayfish and other crustaceans, some lake dwelling species may become planktonic feeders.

Trout of all ages will eat nearly anything they can grab, and along with the brown trout are near the top of the food chain at Poronui, taking more fish and fewer insects as they grow, although insects continue to be a part of their diet.

They prefer to feed in low light such as dawn and dusk and also at night. They will feed during the day but usually in an opportunistic fashion from cover.

Fly Fishing for Rainbow Trout

Active feeding generally occurs during subdued daylight, such as dawn and dusk and at night. Rainbows are often found under cover such as submerged logs and rocks, and undercut banks. In moving water they will generally let the food come to them holding their ground in pools and downstream of any current. Rainbows are generally less likely to take fright than Browns and also seem to like faster moving water.


Many North American and English patterns work very well in New Zealand, particularly dry flies. Information on the best flies and equipment to use for rainbow trout at Poronui, can be found under Clothing and Tackle

Come and experience for yourself rainbow trout fishing at Poronui.  Please contact us for inquiries or make a booking online now.

To discriminating anglers, Poronui is an historic fly fishing lodge where they go fishing for superb NZ brown and rainbow trout in pristine waters.

To sportsmen, Poronui is a supreme hunting lodge where they can hunt majestic deer in a hauntingly beautiful landscape. To others, Poronui is the ultimate luxury wilderness retreat, a place where they can relax or explore 16,000 acres of timeless wilderness.

To match the premier quality of the outdoor experience, Poronui offers three supremely comfortable accommodation options: the legendary Poronui fishing lodge, luxury camping down by the Mohaka river at Safari Camp or stately Blake House - the choice of celebrities, captains of industry and royalty.

Whether your passion is New Zealand fly fishing, hunting or hiking, our guests talk of the magic of Poronui – the breathtaking location, the genuine Kiwi warmth, and the camaraderie they share with guides and fellow adventurers.

Come and experience the legend of Poronui.

PO Box 1941, Taupo 3351, New Zealand Telephone +64 7 384 2080 Facsimile +64 7 384 2054 ©Copyright Poronui 2012