The 190km long Mataura River is renowned as a source of brown trout and is a legendary dry fly river, drawing national and international fishers. This premier fishery offers over 150kms of easily accessible, fishable waters. The prolific hatches of mayfly distinguish the river as trout will rise freely at all times of the day for this delicacy.

The Mataura is the second largest river in the region. Its headwaters are located in the Eyre Mountains to the south of Lake Wakatipu. From there it flows southeast towards Gore, where it turns southward. It then passes through the town of Mataura and eventually enters the ocean beside Fortrose at Toetoes Bay on the southern coast of the South Island. Much of its channel is braided.

Until about 18,000 years ago the Mataura River drained Lake Wakatipu. The road to Kingston, and further on to Queenstown, follows part of the former river bed, now blocked by glacial moraine.

The river has been identified as an Important Bird Area by BirdLife International because it supports breeding colonies of the Endangered Black-Billed Gull.

Venture Southland
Last modified
Wed 27 Jun 2018
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