HomeNorth CanterburyNorth Canterbury: Where to fishLake Catherine (Monck)

Lake Catherine (Monck)


Lake Catherine (also known as Lake Monck) is a popular lake for fly fishing for a good population of fish that can be spotted cruising the waters edge. It is subject to the strong Nor westerly winds.

Fish type Brown and rainbow trout
Situation Lake Catherine is a high country lake that lies in a tussock covered valley.

Access map

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Lake Catherine is a popular fly fishing water that due to its location tends to be more sheltered than some of the other Rakaia lakes. It is surrounded by a mixture of open tussock land, scrub and trees. It is an attractive small water to fish and on many days fish can be seen cruising along the shallows and around any weed beds. Fishing around where either the small stream enters the lake at the southern end or the stream that is the outlet at the northern end provide good places to base yourself to watch for cruising fish.


 Lake Catherine (Monck) is walking access only with a DOC track (new in 2008) starting at the head of Lake Evelyn.

At the southern end of Lake Evelyn on Harper Road, turn right onto Olympus Road. About 3 kms along this road it forks with the left hand fork leading to the Ida Lakes and the right hand fork taking you to Lake Catherine. Park at the end of the road (at the locked gate) and walk approximately 200 metres down to the lake.

Methods This is fly fishing only water and the fish respond well to sunken nymphs cast just ahead of them as they cruise past. When they near the fly give it a small twitch. On still warm days and in the evenings there can be a good rise.
Recommended tackle Fly rods capable of casting a weight 5 - 7 line are preferred. Most anglers use floating lines.
Recommended lures Dry flies: Bushy sedge patterns, attractor flies such as Royal Wulff all year and cicada patterns during the heaight of summer. Crickets, Blowflies and Bluebottles are also good to have when there is a noisy, sporadically rising fish.

Nymphs: Damselfly nymphs, willow grubs as well as general patterns such as the Hares Ear

Wet flies: Both small wee wets such as Black and Peacock to imitate a snail or a palmered fly such as the Bibio fished just subsurface and small streamer flies such as dollflies and rabbits can all work well.

Tributaries A small stream feeds into the southern end of Lake Catherine with  the outlet feeding into the Harper River from the northern end.
Applicable to Lake Catherine (Monck)
Region North Canterbury regulations
Season First Saturday in November to 30 April
Methods Fly fishing only
Bag limit 2
Size limit (cm) None

Other fishing waters of the region


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