Trout season opens with great anticipation
  |  First Published: September 2013

At last, the 2013 Victorian trout season is upon us.

On Saturday September 7 all Victorian rivers and creeks will re-open for trout fishing. Do not make the mistake of fishing on the September 1 as trout season always opens on the first Saturday.

The Kiewa River should fish well depending on water levels. If it is flooded, which is always a chance in September then obviously it will be hard to access. Even if it is very high and dirty it can still be fished. That's one great thing about trout, they will feed very well in high dirty water as they use the conditions to gorge on worms which have been washed into the system.

If the rivers and creeks are high, make sure you take some worms. And that is all rivers and creeks, not just the Kiewa. In this era of fishing that we live in which is becoming more and more about sport fishing, graphite rods and casting lures, it is still wonderful to sometimes sit on a log watching your rod as it leans on a forked stick, line extended into the water with a small split shot sinker and a small hook baited with a scrub worm as you wait for something to take the bait.

As mentioned the Kiewa River should fish very well, as should all of its tributaries. So too should the Mitta Mitta River anywhere from Eskdale upstream. As with the same time last year, it is hard to predict what the water levels will be like in the Mitta Mitta River in September as Lake Dartmouth still sits perilously close to spilling over, and if it does spill then the river will be much higher than normal regardless of how much rain we get.

Snowy Creek which runs into the Mitta Mitta River at Mitta Mitta township is always worth a fish early in the season as it holds fantastic numbers of brown and rainbow trout. There are a few larger fish to 50cm and a little bigger in the creek, however most are much smaller. Access to Snowy Creek is fantastic with heaps of camping spots along a very well graded road that is both sealed and unsealed.

Isn't it amazing, Snowy Creek fishes very well every year, and has an excellent number of trout in it, despite the incredible amount of fishing pressure the stream receives each season. This is testimony to the fantastic condition of the waterway, the habitat, lack of silt and streamside erosion and just the natural environment.

Lake Dartmouth will definitely be worth a fishing trip for anybody planning on heading up there. I do not fish the lake in spring time, as very often as I am usually too busy fishing the streams, but I am led to believe that September can be a red hot month as the bigger trout have returned to the lake and regained some condition.

If you are fishing anywhere in the far north east corner of the state, near the Murray River, do not be tempted to cross the border and fish in NSW as their trout season remains closed until the first weekend in October.

Downstream in the slightly warmer areas such as Alans Flat Waterhole and Lake Hume, there should be some good trout fishing on offer. Alans Flat will be stocked with a few hundred yearling rainbow trout in time for the September school holidays, and Lake Hume was stocked recently with several thousand reasonable sized trout which will no doubt be growing quite quickly.

As the weather warms during September a few redfin and yellowbelly should start turning up in both of these locations. They will be slow, but just starting to wake from their winter torpor as water temperatures increase. If you are targeting these species, particularly in Lake Hume, try fishing around rocky areas into the afternoon as the rocks absorb heat from the sun and warm the water in the immediate are slightly. It's not a lot, but the fish can notice it and are often attracted to these areas.

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