We have a terrific month of stream trout fishing ahead and should be one the best Novembers we’ve seen in a long time.
With an outstanding spawning season behind us combined with a good flush out of the system with solid winter and early spring rains, stream trout are stacking on the weight and smashing anything cast at them from a range of baits, lures, nymphs and fly.
Brown trout are the main target species, generally ranging from 200-700g early in the season and are found across all the streams in West and South Gippsland providing a lot of entertainment fishing light gear amongst fallen timber and other obstacles. Heading further off the beaten track, you can hook into some solid 1kg+ plus specimens. You don’t necessarily need a 4WD, just a pair of waders and strong legs.
Rainbow trout are often a nice surprise and have a better weight to length ratio than its cousin – the brown. Rainbows can be mostly found throughout the streams around Noojee where old stocks have managed to breed well in the last couple of years.
November is a great month for any angler whether bait, lure, nymphing or fly is your thing. The streams around Noojee are also very family friendly with picnic tables, toilets and BBQs on offer and great access to the water is ideal for teaching kids the basics of fishing.
Daylight savings has kicked in and provides an excuse to take yourself or the family for a fish amongst a beautiful setting after work. The basic gear for bait or lure fishing is a 1-4kg light rod measuring 6-7ft fitted with a 1500-2500 class reel spooled with 6-8lb line. Your choice of bait, soft plastics, spinner bladed lures or minnow style hardbodied lures is completely up to you, but are all super effective on stream trout.
This month is the pinnacle of insect hatchings over the region with warm spring days and storm activity exciting everything small with wings. We’ve just recently had the first of what will be many white-winged ant or termite hatchings and we’ll also see a heap of midges, flies and beetles hatch over the coming months making it a fly angler’s dream.
While the water is still flowing fairly strong, a beaded nymph with a dry fly indicator should work wonders.
Jakov Vucak visited the Latrobe River in Noojee for the first time and while he wasn’t able to land a fish, he had two strikes on a black beaded nymph using a Royal Humpy as the indicator. On both occasions the trout went for the beaded nymph and as Jakov has only recently been getting into flyfishing, he absolutely loved the area and will definitely be back soon after realising the potential of the Latrobe and Toorongo Rivers.
Matt Eyles reports that he’s been fishing the Tarago River downstream of the reservoir for over 20 years and just recently caught his biggest ever brown trout weighing approximately 2kg.
After losing a few thumpers late last season he returned to his favourite stretch of river armed with a Royal Coachman fly, although Matt reckons any fly would have done the trick on the day.
Having only spied the big fish a few days before in a flooded overspill of the old river bed, he knew exactly where to be well placed to try his luck, so he cast away. Within an instant of the fly hitting the water it disappeared and the 10m of line sitting beside him screamed off and so the fun had begun. Fighting a small fish amongst willow roots and fallen timber is hard at the best of times and Matt knew he had his work cut out for him with this monster.
Not having a landing net provided Matt with a nervous land but he got it on the bank and was in awe of this beautifully big stream trout with brilliant markings and fine condition. As Matt put it after dropping plenty of large stream trout in the past and then being able to get the strike on a big fish and patiently manoeuvre it around snags, “It was one of the most inspiring moments of my life”.
Hearing Matt’s story I appreciate that this was an incredible fish making it a memorable occasion and would be for any angler that puts in the time doing what they enjoy.
This trout season will be a memorable one for many anglers and November is just the month to get stuck into the West and South Gippsland region and start exploring the streams. Just getting out there familiarising yourself with a stretch of river and learning about carefully approaching trout feeding zones, casting and the different techniques will reward.
Please keep those reports coming in along with photos and feel free to email me any questions. Happy fishing!
Matt Eyles’ personal best brown trout caught out of a flooded Tarago River on a Royal Coachman fly.Reads: 1011