To protect large numbers of spawning rainbows, the Timaru isn't open for fishing until late spring, however angling is allowed year round on the stretch of water from the road bridge to Lake Hawea. During late winter and early spring this section of the river can be very productive, especially after a spell of rain which will encourage migrating rainbows to enter the river. The Timaru is a sparkling stream that flows into Lake Hawea from the east, about 30 minutes drive from Hawea township. Anglers are advised that the Timaru is mainly a spawning stream and most adult fish return to the lake in December. For most of the year, other than during spawning, the Timaru holds fairly small, mostly juvenile rainbows. For the first 3-4km upstream from the lake the river runs through a narrow gorge, and anglers have to cross and re-cross frequently. Thereafter the valley opens out somewhat and the country is very pleasant beech forest in the gullies and glades and a stream that holds just enough fish to keep an angler interested. In summer low flows ensure that good pools are few and far between in the middle reaches. The Timaru then becomes a stream for walkers rather than anglers, however the headwaters do hold a few good-sized resident fish. The fish that are there rise freely and take small dry flies and nymphs enthusiastically.
AddressAccess trrough Lake Hawea Station, off Timaru Creek Road (gravel Road)