I am sure that the majority of those who trout fish don't bother to check out small streams to see if there may be any trout in them. Well, for me I am one who loves to fish these small streams because most of them that flow into a large river will have trout in them. When fishing small out of the way small streams you will come across quite a few log jams, some are small and are quite easy to climb over or go around if that's possible. Then there's the large log jams that can be a real challenge if there's no way around them due to high river banks or heavy foliage that's full of blackberry bushes. Log jams are just a part of small stream fishing and one has to take the good with the bad at times, that's really the worst thing one has to contend with. Yes it can be tough at times, it's also very rewarding when you catch your first trout in a small out of the way stream.
The trout themselves are mainly small to medium size fish with the occasional large one thrown in from time to time. Most of these small streams are worth fishing early in the season when the water levels are still at a good height. The trout fishing gear you need only needs to be light too, there's no need for a long fishing rod, large spinning reel or heavy fishing lines. All you need is something similar to what I use as follows: Okuma Celilo Finesse 6' ultra light spin 2-6lb trout rod, Okuma ITX-100, Okuma Inspira ISX20B, Okuma Helious HSX-20, Epixor EXPT-20 or Okuma Ceymar C-10 spinning reels, a variety of Mepps inline spinners, Platypus Pulse Mono premium mono or Platypus Super 100 mono 4lb line. If the water is a dark tannin colour use a gold or copper blade lure, a White Miller Bug spinner will work well too.
If the water is running clear, then go for the darker colours such as the March Brown or Stone Fly Bug spinners, a black or copper blade spinner should also do the job too. Small stream trout can be very fussy, so don't hesitate to keep changing the lures, eventually there will be one they will go for. Once the warmer weather arrives and there's less rainfall the water levels drop and the water temperature rises so I don't bother going near them. With low water levels the trout become very skittish and the slightest noise will send them darting off, even the sound of a small 1.5 gram inline spinner hitting the water is enough to spook them. Then there's those clear sunny days and low water levels, they're the worst days to fish a small stream, full sun and low water do not go together so it's best to stay well away from them.
The only time I will head back to a small stream during the warmer months is when we've had a couple of inches of rain and raises the water level, plus the rain does help to lower the water temperature and helps to liven up the trout. It's best to be on the water at first light though because once the sun hits the water the trout tend to shut down, not only that it's also too hot for me to be in a small stream in the Summer months. As the season changes from Summer to Autumn the weather slowly becomes cooler and the water temperatures start to drop, that's when I frequent the small streams a little more. Not only that we do get a few odd days of rain which brings the small streams back to life and the rise in water level seems to get the trout out and about again. I've had some very good spin sessions in these small streams with catches of up to twenty trout being caught and released during the cooler months and higher water levels. Small #00 (1.5 gm) Mepps inline spinners such as the Aglia & Black Fury models with black, gold, copper or silver blades really do well in the small streams as do the White Miller, March Brown & Stone Fly Bug spinners. At times when the water level is higher and running faster than normal I will up my lure size to a #0 (2.5 gram) and that's because the lighter 1.5 gram lure will not stay deep enough in the fast flowing waters.
The other good thing about fishing small streams is that you have them all to yourself, plus they are so peaceful once you're in them. The other thing about small stream fishing is that you must be pretty good with your accuracy with casting a light weight lure as most of these small streams there's not a lot of margin for error. A wayward cast up the stream will most likely cause the lure to be entangled in a tea tree or similar, so make sure you hone your casting skills before fishing a small stream. I have fished quite a lot of small streams that I thought would have trout in them only to find out they didn't, but had I not given them a go I wouldn't have known and that would have bugged me. The ones I have found and fished are pretty well spread apart which is good, most of them do require some heavy bush bashing to reach the water.
The bush bashing can be a little hairy due to the amount of Tiger snakes I've come across over the years, in fact one day I was struck on the hip by a Tiger snake, thankfully my waders saved the day. It wasn't the snake's fault either, it was mine for not looking where I was walking and I stepped on its tail. This is just something that happens when river fishing, it's not only the small streams one comes across a snake, they're in and around all the rivers across Tasmania and mainland Australia. If you're walking through the bush, make sure you keep your arms above your waist so your hands and lower arms aren't exposed to a snake bite. Remember snakes don't hear, they go on the vibration on the ground so stomp your feet every so often, that's what I do anyway.
A beautifully coloured small stream trout
A well conditioned small streat trout
Getting to a small out of the way stream can be tough
Log jams just adds to the adventures of small stream fishing
Peace and tranquility here plus the bonus of a trout
Recent rain raises the water level
Small stream trout are mainly small medium size fish