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  • 15 Post By piwakawaka
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Thread: Whirinaki flying fish

  1. #1
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    Feb 2017
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    23

    Whirinaki flying fish

    Was invited on a raft hunting trip months scheduled for last weekend with a mate G and 2 of his mates D and R and as with any invite involving hunting there was only one answer- fuck yes. Id never been on a raft before but was told that these guys are experts so trusted that i wasnt going to drown. A week before the trip and G had dissapeared without a trace leaving me wondering what the hells going on and if the trip is still happening. After some thorough investigation ( a text saying whats the plan fuckass?) i found out he had been on a 2 week drinking holiday but yes the plan was still on although all the gear i needed was at his house. luckily his flatmate let me in to raid his garage without asking a question (should i have raided the freezer too?) The plan is to meet at 10 near rotorua at his mate D's place which has no adress so i arrive at 10 thinking ill just call the bro when im there and can follow him to the house. 2 hours later and G arrives man this guys a nana. another 3 or so hours and we have the raft on the trailer and are at the river. every ones getting ready, life jackets on, helmets on, so i decide its a good time to ask what am i actually supposed to do. lucklily for my small brain the instructions are easy "if i say forward paddle forward etc" sweet im no en expert. Raft in the river and we float down smoothly with no rapids seen. hopped out at a few nice spots for a quick stalk with nothing seen or heard and eventually made it to a hut by 1700. Gear out of raft and hunting gear on and its time to have an explore. I headed up river with G while R headed down river and D stayed at the hut to sort out gear and a fire. Stalked until dark through some real nice country until we got cut off by a slip so decided to head back in the dark rather then go for a swim. When we all got back to the i realise the difference between the kind of hunting im used to (walking into an area with everything on my back tryin to save as much weight as possible) and raft hunting ( taking as much shit as you possibly can) when D pulls out a chainsaw. an hour later and the fire is blazing and the shit yarns are flowing. After an average dinner of freeze dry its bedtime with plans of going back down the river to a bridge and crossing it then climbing a big hill on the other side hoping theres animals about. 0530 rolls around and i fly (read crawl) out of my sleeping bag and throw on my daybag and pick up my rifle "see you fuckers when i have some meat" the plan is to leave the hut and continue rafting down river by 11 so i run off down the track hoping to be back before they leave me stranded. i reach the bridge and cross it to start my climb up the hill. at 0700 i stop halfway up to take off my jacket and hear something moving through the dry leaf litter only 15 odd metres through the thick shit from me so plan to get a better position to have a look but problem is im also in the dry crunchy leaf litter so 30 slow minutes later im only probably 50m from where i was but have been following the noise of the animal moving the whole time. i decide im getting nowhere so try head away from it to cut back in when i hit less crunchy footing but when i cut back in the animal has disappeared. i continue my way up the hill and eventually reach the top where i find biggest stag shits ive ever seen but nothing else interesting. After a 200m stalk i reach the other side of the plateau and its time to start dropping back down so the stalk turns into a slow walk hanging onto the hope i see something. Im walking down with my rifle in my right hand through a semi open patch of bush when something makes me look up to my left. Its what i like to think of as a hunters 6th sense. its not a noise or seeing movement or anything like that just a reaction you make and when i look i see a white object between 2 trees about 30m from me "shit thats a deers head.......na its just my mind playing tricks..........shit na it actually is a deer!"im standing out in the open front on this deer having a staring contest so slowly start to move my left hand toward my rifle and the deer flinches as if its about to bolt- i freeze- we continue to stare each other dead in the eye for at least 2 minutes before i decide fuck it im getting nowhere might as well try again. my left hand moves slowly over to the foregrip of my rifle and i lift it into my shoulder. put the cross hairs on the deers neck but im shaky as fuck. a few breaths and a mental slapping and the crosshairs are steady on the top of its neck as it stands front on. squeeze the trigger and its a bang-flop the deer drops on the spot thanks to my trusty savage .308 bushpig. i move over to the down animal and start sorting it out for the carry back to camp and take a few photos. only a minute in a hind barks at me down the hill probably only 50m away. i figure it mustve heard the muffled sound of the supressed .308 and thought that was another deer barking. I respond to the hind with my own shitty version of a bark and to my suprise get a response. while i finished off getting my shit sorted i chatted to the hind for a while before taking out my phone to record it but of course as soon as i did that it shut up. Now with yearling on my back its an easy carry back down the hill to the track and back to camp where everyone else is already back but no other animals have been shot. D has meatworks experience so he deals to the yearling with no waste and then while we wait for a meat to cool off a bit more we cook the ribs and brisket over the to make sure we really dont waste anything and get a delicious lunch. After lunch we pack up and continue rafting down the river to a new spot to camp. theres a few rapids on the way so im seriously happy that these guys know what theyre doing or i would be very wet. New camp spot found D and G get to work building camp and me and R head off in opposite directions for a hunt. Half an hour later im bcak at camp having only found some vertical faces i couldnt pass so help out getting wood and bulding a wall to protect us from the wind. I set a hook out with a bit of scrap meat and soon pull in a decent size eel so we cook it up for entre and have yearling eye fillets and backsteak for main course in front of a bloody good fire. the last day and we pack up and head off to the raft where we find a taniwha sized eel hooked up so release him (would of been 2 metres long and 150mm wide) down the river we go and all jump out at different spots to meet back at the raft by 1600. I walk until i find the raft with no events then head up a steep ridge to try get up on top. halfway up and i hear chirping so have a look up and theres 2 kereru nests in neighbouring trees and they were both full of noisy chicks which was good to see. i carry on a few metres when i see the most unexpected shit ive ever seen in the bush on top of a hill. at about 500m up theres a fish on the gound. it was still fresh so im guessing a shag or a hawk plucked it out of the river and flew up then dropped it. hours later back at the raft and D has shot a piglet with a .44 magnum so theres not much of that left and no one else has managed to get anything. we jump in the raft and float all the way back down the river seeing one deer on the way dissapearing into the bush
    my first trip into that area and my first trip on a raft and its been good all round
    cant wait to get out in the bush again!Name:  20171007_091410.jpg
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    jakewire, P38, Tahr and 12 others like this.

  2. #2
    Almost literate. veitnamcam's Avatar
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    Sounds like a good adventure.
    Beaker likes this.
    Rule 3: Load a firearm only when ready to fire

    Chicken Intolerant.

  3. #3
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    Cool story, sounds as if there were a few animals about. As far as I know the Whirinaki was 1080 poisoned again this year , any evidence of this? ( Poison Warning signs etc)

  4. #4
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    Yea plenty of animals around. I was told it was bombed the week previous further up the river but not 100% sure on that. Saw no signs and no green pellets floating around

  5. #5
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    That's good to hear, 1080 doesn't kill them all but it is a pain in the ass as it limits hunting areas until the stand down period is over.

  6. #6
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    Awesome trip mate, Did you stay at the hut just past the swing bridge. Always wanted to raft that river but unsure of the rapids etc .. Good trip cheers

  7. #7
    Member Scouser's Avatar
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    Awesome trip mate, sounds like you had a blast, freaky seeing a fresh fish in the bush though.....
    While I might not be as good as I once was, Im as good once as I ever was!

    Rule 4: Identify your target beyond all doubt

  8. #8
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    yea that was the hut we stayed at. Id say go for it if you know what your doing. It wasnt too bad a few rapids but only 2 bits that were bad enough for us to get out and walk while the expert got the raft through. Bloody awesome way to hunt and a cool place to do it. Heaps of pigs sign all over and deer as you climb up
    veitnamcam likes this.

 

 

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