Testimonial to John Baker at the Raised Hackle

We are from Victoria, Australia, and we have been fishing in New Zealand two or three times a year for around twelve years now. Mostly we base ourselves in Turangi because of its central location to so many good trout fishing rivers and lakes. While there, we always engage John to get the benefit of his expert assistance and information about what is ‘hot', and how to get into the action.

John knows all the rivers and lakes in the Taupo fishery like the back of his hand, and rivers in the ‘back country' as well, which provide fantastic locations for fishing. Through his networks of contacts and his access to local information, his advice is ‘real time': what flies to use, where to fish, which runs and pools. These constantly change, so to be able fly in from out of town and be ‘on the money' first up is fantastic. Even though we know a bit about fishing, his extensive knowledge, always enthusiastically given, always adds value (and good fish).

John also adds good fun to our trip. He is a great story teller ("we got 47 fush out of that hole last week"), has a good sense of humour, and makes a day's fishing enjoyable and sociable.

Sometimes his advice can be a bit terse: "don't cast there - cast THERE - cast towards THAT rock, THAT ripple (one amongst a river of rocks and ripples). On casting technique: get it (the back cast) up, Doug, UP! Stay calm. CALM. Don't panic. Of course, we are labelled with various complimentary titles: ‘dropper', ‘tangles', ‘ping'. You just have to give it (back) to him.

But get it right and get the fish.

Good friends forever. 

 Keith, Peter & Doug




Fishermen visting Turangi who are looking for a great experience,go no further than
a trip to the Back Country with John Baker. john is a superb angler who knows how
to read the water and catch fish.

Nathan and i spent three wonderful days with John in October 2010 and experienced
the highs and lows of what nature has to offer.

Even on one of the hardest days,John came through with fish. His experience and
river craft are a lesson for all anglers whether you are a new angler or an experienced

On our final day,Nathan who had not fished a lot managed to land 10 fish under Johns
guiding hand.I feel sure that this experience will leave Nathan with memories that will
hold dear for the rest of his fishing days.

John's attention to detail with flies to to match the hatch and the great food and
camaraderie added to our pleasurable time in Paradise ( Turangi ) we will be back.

John Scott, North Lake Western Australia

Nathan Plush, Mckenzie Creek Victoria Australia.



"I have known John Baker for over 10 years and have used his guiding    

services for myself and business clients. Whether they are new to the sport

or experienced anglers John has the ability to communicate and guide at all
levels. I have enjoyed fishing the rivers such as the Tongariro, Whanganui
and Whakapapa with John. A day in the back country to the very private
Chopatui lodge is a must on the trout fishermans bucket list. John really
has created the "home of world class fly fishing"

Stephen Rose

Managing Director

Nature Vet Australia


"In the last 10 years John has been my guide on several trips. John is a
very experienced and fun guide to be with. No matter where the fish are, he
knows where and how to catch them. Whether you are an experienced or
novice angler: there is always something exciting that you will get out of the
John's humor will make your day out even more fun."

Paul, Amsterdam
"Trout fishing on the Tongariro River with John Baker is a day to beat all days.
No matter what your level of fishing expertise he is there to make fishing for trout
an experience that will be a source of pleasant memories                         
long after you have hung up the waders and returned to the everyday life. I
often say that fishing does not ALWAYS involve fish, but with John Baker at
your side that will be the RARE day indeed."

Edward Malphus
Santa Monica, California

" John has been my fishing guide on many occasions over the last seven
years. We have fished the Tongariro, Tauranga-Taupo, Whakapapa, 
Whanganui, Rangitikei, Mohaka, Ngaruroro, Lake Otamangakau, Lake Kuratau
and Lake Taupo. John's knowledge of the region's rivers and lakes is
extraordinary; he knows where to go, the best time to go, the lines and
flies to use. I've landed lots of trout over the years and had many wonderful
times. John is a great guide and a friendly, helpful person. I highly recommend
him to the novice or the very knowledgeable person seeking a great fishing
Paul Baines . Wellington
" I have always wanted to exoerience fly fishing. I grabbed the opportunity to           
join Paul for 3 day's of adventure in July 2010.
What fun and enjoyment !  I caught my first Rainbow trout of 4lbs. The trick
says John: "watch the indicator" It worked . John's patience and friendly
persistence with my casting technique appropriate for a novice was a major
factor in my successful start. His knowledge was impressive and active
relaxed approach made me feel very comfortable with my new experience.

Thanks John 
Garth Ireland , Wellington