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Sea run trout tactics – Craig Vertigan

Sea run trout tactics – Craig Vertigan

During the trout off-season I tend to spend a bit of time chasing bream, to continue getting a fishing fix, and spend time tying flies and dreaming about the trout season to come. It’s a time to spend doing tackle maintenance, stocking up on lures and dreaming up new challenges and goals for the trout season ahead. When the new season comes around I usually spend the first few months targeting sea runners. Sea run trout are simply brown trout that spend much of there lives out to sea and come in to the estuaries for spawning and to feed on whitebait and the other small endemic fishes that spawn in late winter through spring. Mixed in with the silvery sea runners you can also expect to catch resident fish that have the typical dark colours of a normal brown trout as well as atlantic salmon in some of our estuaries that are located near salmon farm pens. Living in Hobart it is quick and easy to do a trip on the Huon or Derwent and is a more comfortable proposition compared to a trip up to the highlands with snow and freezing winds to contend with.

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2017 12 21 Head shot of Mersey River brownI left home just after 5:30 am this morning and headed to the upper reaches of the Mersey River for an early spin session in what was a reasonably cool morning with the lightest of breeze. As soon as I arrived it was on with the wading gear and off for a forty minute walk to where I would start the spin session. I was trying a new stretch of river (that I checked out on Google Earth) for the first time this trip so I didn't know what to expect.

It looked okay on Google Earth at the time, now I'm just hoping it will give up a few trout at some stage of the spin session. When I finally arrived there I could see I was in for a tough day at the office, it was a very long rocky stretch of river and it looked like the river bottom was going to be my biggest test, on the body that is. Once in the the river I knew right away I was going to finish the day a very sore man indeed as I struggled to keep my footing on the rocky river bottom. Most of the water I'm fishing here is fast water and it varies in depth from shallow to just below the waist. I was now thinking why the hell did I have to pick an area like this, had I known before hand what it was like I would have stayed well away from here.

I started flicking the little gold spinner around and let the water do the work in carrying the lure down in between the rocks in the fast water runs where I had a hook up in no time at all. It was a nice medium size brown, it made a dash downstream & with one decent head shake it tossed the spinner. At least I new there were trout here which was good ,so I may catch a few trout after all this morning. As I continued to struggle my way upstream I did have the odd hit and miss as well as several follows but couldn't manage to get any hook ups. I changed over to the little ghost brown hard body as that usually sucks the trout in most times I've used it. After twenty minutes of working the river with it all I had was two follows from a couple of nice size browns and that's as far as it went. Not a sign of aggression from those two browns at all.

I had at last come to the top end of the very fast water and was now into a nice stretch of medium to fast water runs which I found to be a lot easier to wade, still slippery and rocky but nowhere near to what I had just fished over the past hour and a half. I decided I'd give the Rapala F3 rainbow lure a go now seeing as the trout weren't interested in taking the ghost brown. I think it was on the third or forth cast when I had a trout take the lure as I retrieved it down a fast water run that flowed between a couple of large rocks. After a short tussle with this trout it came to the surface and that's when I saw it was a nice medium size rainbow. Once again it's the rainbow that's been the first trout taken on a spin session.

Adrian Webb (meppstas)


First brown of the day

2017 12 21 First brown of the day

 

Head shot of Mersey River brown

2017 12 21 Head shot of Mersey River brown

 

Lovely rainbow Mersey River

2017 12 21 Lovely rainbow Mersey River

 

Mersey River tough going here

2017 12 21 Mersey River tough going here

 

Trout taken here

2017 12 21 Trout taken here

 

Wild Mersey River brown Liena

2017 12 21 Wild Mersey River brown Liena

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