my wife and i recently visited owen river lodge. although i don't have the stats, i expect that the majority of guests are from australia. u.s. or canadian visitors are taking on a whole different commitment in terms of travel time and expenses. also, comparable fishing experiences for us yankees are likely to be montana or alaska or something similar. i've fished both those places many times and owen river isn't comparable.
first, the lodge, the food and the attention to detail could not be better. the cabins are very nice; plenty of room, very clean and comfortable. the food is top notch restaurant quality. felix is a unique guy and a very good host...as well as a good businessman.
simply put, the fishing is not easy. its not a place for beginning fly fisherman although under the right conditions, even a novice might catch a fish or two. however, these are all wild fish...big and spooky. the water can be crystal clear and you're sight casting to most fish. you can see them but they can also see you. there are some easy "beats" but many are not so easy to wade or walk. you're going to work for fish but its well worth the effort. like most fishing, it is going to be weather dependent. although i struggled, it was one of if not the best pure fishing experiences i've had.
my wife didn't fish even though she has done quite a lot of fishing. she had no problem whatsoever enjoying herself at the lodge with the dog, other non fishing guests and several massages. its a beautiful and relaxing setting. one of the true highlights for us was meeting and interacting with the other guests. of course, the fishing stories get better after a few glasses of wine at dinner.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Owen River Lodge is New Zealand's finest 5 star rated fly fishing lodge. Luxurious, warm and inviting ambiance. Stylish, understated accommodation located right on the Owen River in the South Island of New Zealand. Come and enjoy the stunning food, superb service and outstanding fishing. ... more less