Adapt to prevailing conditions
  |  First Published: April 2011

We are now well into autumn and already, wind and below-average temperatures have dominated our weather patterns, making predicting fishing options more challenging.

In times like these, it’s often best to adapt to conditions and find the most suitable waterway to fuel your passions, as opposed to choosing your destination well in advance.

Historically, this time of year can be quite settled in terms of wind, but if the past few months are anything to go by, general forecasts are quite the opposite!

Macquarie River

I have ventured to the ‘Mac a few times over the past month or so with some surprising results. On one occasion I found a fit 2.2kg brownie scoffing down wayward dragonflies but failed to produce a hook-up. General patterns were ignored and this left me wondering if I needed to tie some larger patterns for such opportunities.

In the same area, an energetic 1.3kg rainbow took a Deer Hair Red Tag in a fast run, and I missed another of similar size. I encountered these fish within an Angler Access route, proving that despite increased traffic, you are likely to experience some great fishing within these access areas.

Also, an angling mate informed me of a 6kg rainbow that he saw grassed on the ‘Mac. Almost certainly an escapee from the fish farm but still would have been a battle in such a waterway!

Brumbys Creek

After-work missions to Brumbys have been exciting. On one outing I found trout leaping after the odd red spinner mayfly and isolated dragonflies in reedy lies. I managed one small fish on a spent spinner pattern before departing. I returned a week later with a mate in similar conditions with almost no insects to be found.

It was balmy with no wind and apart from a small copperhead snake I was beginning to think that the area was void of life. As soon as the wind came up, the fish were on. We found ourselves on the wrong side of the bank trying to cast into the teeth of the wind, which became nigh on impossible.

The wind continued to blow as the light dropped and we scored none. It’s funny how the cards are dealt sometimes.

Recent Stocking

Over the past month or so, there has been some stocking of northern still waters including 750 adult rainbows into Four Springs, 1000 brown trout fry into the Beaconsfield Dams, 5000 rainbow fingerlings into Lake Lauriston and 1000 rainbow fingerlings into Lake Waverley.

Liffey River

Often left off the radar of many angler’s fish list is the Liffey River. You could easily be mistaken for thinking that this water is a fishless drain, but much of this perception may come from the view near the highway, which is far from appealing.

Know where to go and you are in for a pleasant outing where colourful little brown trout abound in numbers. Be sure to seek appropriate access approval where possible and have yourself a blast.

Ants Pants

Do you ever get that feeling that you simply need to go fishing? That tingling sensation that drives you wild like someone has put itching powder in your dacks? Well, it’s not a fungal skin infection, it’s ants! They are on the menu at this time of year and the sight fishing is superb.

The success however, is quite the opposite, with ant-feeding trout notoriously difficult to entice. It seems that once these fish are switched on to this particular food source, anything else is ignored. Best fly options would include a dark F-Fly, tiny Parachute Black Spinner or even a small, scruffy, tail-less Possum Emerger can sometimes bring them undone.

I have found ant falls to coincide with mild, overcast conditions but mostly anytime there is smoke haze about, including the dreaded forestry burn-offs.


Boating anglers are being warned by Inland Fisheries Service to stick to the designated speed limit on inland waters or risk being fined. Anyone observed exceeding the speed limits will be fined under Marine and Safety Tasmania regulations that carry a $130 fine. Such waterways include Four Springs Lake and Huntsman Lake which both carry a five knot speed limit across the whole water. Water levels can often fluctuate after each visit, leaving rocks and timber dangerously submerged – These speed limits are here to save lives not spoil fun.

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