Presented from Issue 105, August 2013
We did a bit of a runaround Tasmania’s tackle stores to see what their tips for the first month or so of the tackle season were. We asked what the top three places to fish were, plus lures, flies, baits and a few other things.
Here is a rundown on their answers Whenever, and wherever you fish - anywhere, or for any fish in the world - ask the locals and especially ask at the local tackle store. They know what was caught today, yesterday and on what.
After five days of not being able to fish due to windy and wet conditions today I headed back to the same little tannin stream in the hope the trout may be out and about seeing as the river is running a little higher than my last visit. The weather today wasn't all that bad either, plenty of cloud cover with patches of sunlight every now and then, the cool air temperature ( 9 degrees ) was also bearable for a change. It was a late morning start as well, just on 11:10 am when I finally hit the water after a nice long walk to get there. Seeing as the little well used gold #00 Aglia did the job a few days ago I stayed with it to start off the spin session. With the water level running a little higher and faster I did think about going for the larger #0 gold Black fury but decided to wait and see how the little gold Aglia performed first.
With most of the larger rivers running high & fast I thought it best to head over and hit the small streams again as they're much safer to fish, even though there's plenty of water in them they are still okay to hop into and chase trout.
The weather was damp with light drizzle showing up every few minutes and a very cool air temperature of just eight degrees. I arrived at the area I was about to fish when a couple of young boys (7&10) who were helping their parents repairing a paddock fence wandered over for a chat and wanted to know how to catch trout.
I spent around thirty minutes giving them all the info they could take in, before heading off through the bush I gave them a couple of Mepps booklets plus several Mepps spinners to get them started. It was 2:40 pm by the time I hit the water and started flicking a #0 Aglia Fluo rainbow spinner into the cold dark tannin water.
Headed off for another afternoon spin session in a tannin stream, hit the water just on 1:45 pm in what was reasonably good conditions. The water level had dropped by a few inches since yesterdays trip so I'm hoping there will be a few more trout out and about today. When I left home it was nice and overcast, by the time I hopped in the water the clouds had parted and the sun was out, good thing was there was plenty of insect life hovering above the water. The first thing I noticed was a small trout jumping in the pool I had just entered which was a good sign. After several casts around this knee deep tannin water with the copper Aglia I finally had a hit from a small trout and that's as far as it went so I moved on to the next narrow stretch of water.
After some decent rain a few days ago I felt a trip back to the tannin waters may be the go, with plenty of water in them there should be a few hungry trout around. This trip was to a stretch of water I haven't fished since the 8th March which is exactly a month ago, on that trip I caught and released nine trout. If I can catch that amount again on this trip I'll be pretty stoked seeing as this tannin stream has slowed down with the trout on my previous trips. Seeing as it's been a month since I've actually fished this stretch of water it will be interesting to see how it fishes this afternoon.
This report covers two consecutive days fishing tannin waters after some decent rains that got the streams up and running to a good fishing height again.
The first trip was the morning after we had 26 mms of rain the day before and into the night and once at the river I found it to be running at a nice height and a very dark tannin colour. Several weeks ago I fished this same little tannin stream and had a good four days of fishing in it, I'm hoping for the same result again this trip. I was in the water at 8:20am and started off with a #00 White Miller Bug spinner, the same little one that did a good job in dark tannin water here before. The area I started off in is the upper reaches and the last trip here (7th March) I caught & released thirteen trout. Even though the water was a littler higher and faster flowing it was still good enough to be holding trout in flat water on both sides of it. I slowing fished my way upstream casting the Bug into the flat waters on both sides of the stream and waited for a strike as I retrieved the lure each time. Nothing happened, not a single touch from a trout, not even bow wave behind the spinner, the trout weren't here.
Today's weather is not as good as I was hoping for as it was bright sunny conditions with a North Easterly wind blowing at 15 kph which will make for a tough time in the small tannin stream I'm heading to this morning. It's also a day to be on the lookout for snakes, perfect weather conditions for them to be out and about. I was a little slow of the mark in heading to the stream due to the long spin session I had yesterday the body was a little on the sore side this morning.
By the time I walked (1.5kms) and reached the stream it was 9:20 am, a little late given the conditions that were forecast. The stream had dropped in level as I had expected it to, any lower and I wouldn't have fished it. Today I started off using a gold #00 Aglia Mouche Noire just for something different to see if the trout would take it in the low, light tannin waters. This 1.5 kms of is very tight fishing as it's pretty narrow over the distance and the foliage isn't as thick, it's more open than other areas I've previously fished.
This trip today required a forty minute walk to where I started off the spin session in what was quite good conditions, apart from the lack of cloud it was a top morning to be chasing trout. It was 8:50am when I hit the river and started the session off with a well used #00 copper Aglia mainly because I was fishing in shade & the water was still reasonably dark in colour, if it doesn't catch a trout then I'll make a change. The water level had already dropped by a few inches since my last trip so I have to make the most of fishing these tannin waters while there's still some decent water flowing in them. Casting up and across the stream into the flat water near the river banks I had a few light hit and misses on the Aglia, I wasn't sure whether to stick with it or give it a bit longer. I did the latter and it wasn't all that long when I had my first hook up and trout in hand, a small/medium brown and a plump fish it was. I continued working the spinner from one side to the other in the stream as I slowly fished my way up it and had a couple more hook ups but lost both fish. I don't mind losing the odd trout every now and then but when I lose two in a row then it's time for a lure change, it was off with the Aglia and on with a #00 March Brown Bug spinner.
Wild windy weather is going to hit later today and it's going to hang around for the next few days so I thought I'd better get a spin session in before it arrives. When I arrived at 9:05am the first thing I noticed the water level had risen by around three inches which was great to see, yesterdays much needed rain did the job.
The rise in water level meant the trout should be in a aggressive mood with any luck. With the water being higher meant I could also use the anti-kink today and my spinner of choice was the Mepps #00 White Miller the same lure that caught thirteen of the fourteen trout a few days ago. The tannin coloured water was only marginally darker so everything was looking good for a spin session here today. By the time I had my wading gear on and hopped in the stream the wind had arrived, even though it was still sunny the air temperature wasn't all that warm.
Today is the day I'm going for my 10,000th Tasmanian wild trout since we moved here back in March 2000 & I'm going to catch it in one of my favorite tannin waters. Looking through a few of my past trout seasons records I found that these tannin waters fished extremely well at this time of the season so that's a good enough reason to head there. It proved correct yesterday when I fished a new tannin water, the trout were there and pretty aggressive and with cooler weather and recent rains they'll be on the take today.
After having around 5-6 mms of rain and with the morning being quite humid I thought a trip to tannin waters would be well worth it this morning. I was just about to leave when the rain arrived again so I had to sit around for an hour before heading off. This trip involved a long walk and plenty of bush bashing to reach a new tannin water, one I came across while looking around on Google Earth. With nineteen trout still needed to be caught for me to reach a milestone of 10,000 Tasmanian wild trout I thought the change to a new water may help bring it that much closer and maybe a little quicker.
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by Sarah Graham
Many anglers are preparing for the opening of the new angling season on Saturday 7 August and it's shaping up to be another good one with the fishery in excellent health as a result of last year’s drought breaking rains. There are many great fishing locations around the State from which to choose for the opening weekend and early season fishing but here are a few suggestions.