The long anticipated wait of the new trout season is finally here!
It’s August, it’s cold and it’s fishy. Opening weekend is a tradition for many anglers across the north west. The idea of opening your new trout account with a good trip with memorable fish sets the bar high, and challenges you to make each trout season better than your last.
While we are better known for our salt water fishing, there are some spectacular trout waters from pristine rivers and creeks to scenic inland lakes and dams to explore around the NW. The start of the trout season can be a challenge on its own and it’s usually hard to pick spots that will fire early on.
Personally, I prefer fishing larger bodies of water early on in the season. In my experience fish are usually worn out after an exhausting spawning run and they don’t hesitate to re-enter these larger bodies of water in a desperate attempt to regain condition by feeding heavily. Some of these waters include Lake Mikany in Smithton, Talbots Lagoon in Guildford, the Pet Dam and the Guide Reservoir in Ridgely.
My personal favourite is the Guide Reservoir as this place usually produces consistently solid fish early on in the season. As for techniques, these systems are usually very similar. Lake Mikany is a boating water so trolling small lures such as hardbodied lures, Tassie Devils or spinners can entice a few fish although a highly effective method has proven to be casting light weighted soft plastics such as Berkley T-tails at rising fish.
Bait seems to work well in the Pet Dam, especially for the rainbows. For land-based places such as Talbots and the Guide green and gold Ashley spinners or soft plastics such as T-tails casted from the banks usually does the trick.
I can’t get enough of the rivers we’re blessed with along the North West coast. While I don’t normally fish them on opening day, I can’t resist checking them out early in the season. From experience, I find fishing to be extremely tough and unpredictable although you can be rewarded with some cracking fish! I always make the mistake of going too far upstream early on in the season.
I used to predict that fish would still be up high spawning late (which is sometimes true) but usually I find that the fish have moved downstream looking for food. They can sometimes be fussy and slow in the fast moving water but Celtas, soft plastics and small Rapalas can produce good results in the Leven River, Mersey River, Emu River and upper reaches of the Blythe River.Reads: 1138