Excellent Alpine fishing
  |  First Published: February 2011

There’s been some really exciting fishing for trout in all alpine region rivers and streams in recent weeks, with many reports of keeper-size specimens being caught on spinner lures and dry flies, as well as live bait.

Bogong High Plains

The Bogong High Plains is 1800m above sea level and home to two of the very best wild trout holding impoundments in Victoria, being Rocky Valley and Pretty Valley reservoirs, although that’s a well kept secret, with only a few regularly-returning and tight-lipped anglers plying their waters each summer.

Rocky Valley is at least 60-65 acres in surface area and very deep and icy cold all year round. It holds a large population of wild rainbow and brown trout that reach 4kg in weight, with rainbow trout averaging 1.25-1.5kg being caught from around the edges in summer by relatively novice holidaying bait and lure anglers.

Pretty Valley is a fair bit smaller and shallower, and for fly fishers seeking a challenge it has an inflow feeder creek system to die for. Everywhere, the approach is completely open grassed country with no shrubs or trees to hide behind and mostly rainbow trout to 1.5kg, sometimes a few browns, can be seen rising in midstream during the late afternoon.

Even an approach on hands and knees from 20m out can be seen by these easily spooked fish which then refuse to even look at one’s fly. I invite anyone who seeks a real challenge to try for these wily trout this summer and good luck! You’ll need it, believe me.

Lake Guy

The water level of Lake Guy at Bogong Village is down at the moment, having been drained during normal hydro generating operations which are a feature of the area, especially in summer. The lake should be full again in February and fishing will resume I expect. Mostly brown trout to 750g are on offer and many are caught here from low-powered boats and canoes in summer.

The two inflow feeder streams, Rocky Valley Creek and the East Kiewa River, are fishing extremely well at present, with many brown trout to 800g being caught on lures and dry flies from several locations, including just below the new generator building.

Ovens River

The Ovens River from Porepunkah through Bright to Germantown is in excellent condition and a report from Peter at the Riverside Holiday Park in Bright states that guests are catching plenty of trout to 30cm in length on drifted worms at the moment. The Ovens was flowing quite fast a few weeks ago but has now settled down and trout can be seen rising everywhere during the day, Peter adds.

Upper Ovens River

The upper section of the Ovens River deserves a special mention of its own this month as the fishing has been exceptionally good there in recent weeks. Fishing guide Graham Thwaites from Southern Fly Fishing Adventures reports clients catching and releasing a number of trout during a recent afternoon’s fishing, including five rainbows and a brown that went a good kilogram each, all caught around the Harrietville area on a size 14 royal coachman dry fly.

There are also persistent reports of salmon to 2kg (most are smaller), being caught on Tassie devils in the west arm above Harrietville.

Mt Beauty Pondage

The Mt Beauty pondage is in excellent shape for summer and some good-sized trout are being caught by holidaying anglers at the moment. A report to hand recently relates that one lucky angler landed a 3.5kg brown trout from there on a Celta-type spinning lure. Trout are plentiful and most being caught are around 500-600g in size, according to other reports.

Kiewa River

The Kiewa River is positively jumping with action as holidaying anglers from the three caravan parks continue to ply the waters daily this month. Lots of mostly brown trout have been reported caught since the holidays began, with many exceeding a kilogram in weight. Lures of every description are the most popular method used, with fly fishers, many of them absolute novices it seems, also taking their share. Flyfishing is becoming more popular each year in the Kiewa River and with the changed conditions after the big flood last November it is the way to go, by far.

Lower Mitta Mitta River

The Lower Mitta Mitta River from Mitta Mitta to Eskdale is in absolutely perfect condition and trout are rising everywhere during the day, according to reports. Guests at the Mitta Mitta caravan park report taking mostly brown trout to 750g, many smaller, on lures and drifted bait in recent days from behind the park. Fly fishers are also catching some nice browns, a few rainbows, in the airport area and further downstream, according to reports.

Snowy Creek

Snowy Creek at Granite Flat is in excellent condition and anglers report taking rainbow trout to 550g on lures and live bait, including mudeyes and scrub worms in recent days. A recent report states that caught several brown trout to 600g were caught on Tassie devils from the area behind the Laurel Hotel at Mitta Mitta.

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