What was a cold start to summer ended up a very hot end for all of us down south. However, now that we are heading into the first month of autumn, the water on Lake Jindabyne should start to cool quickly, and with a return to the cooler water temperatures we should see an improvement the edge fishing around the lake for the shore based anglers. For the last month or so the downrigging was very good and made it easy to catch a fish as long as you had all the gear to deep troll.
With the summer heat over, the streams will also start to fish better and if we get a little rain this may spurt the trout into a last-minute feed up before the spawning run, which could start at any time in the next couple of months.
At the moment, only fly anglers are doing well on the rivers and streams. Things will pick up for the lure anglers only after we get rain.
The best river for spinning lures has been the Thredbo River, and the size and the condition of the trout caught has been quite good. These trout have been caught using Rapalas of the sinking variety (these are better in the faster water) and Celtas or other bladed spinners in the shallow water.
Other lures to try on the rivers have been Gillies Bendbacks and Feathertails, the Vibrax Blue Fox, Blue Fox Super Minnows and you can even try some smaller soft plastics for smaller runs.
On the lake, working the same sort of lures around the edges of the shallow bays in about 4m of water will be the best way to pick up a bigger fish, but it must be early morning or else you might have to wait until dark.
If it is windy – and windy days are quite often good days in summer – try some of the heavier Tasmanian Devils in green and gold or even yellow. Throw them out into the wind in deeper water and retrieve them slowly.
The best colour lures for the lake have been in either natural brown trout and rainbow trout patterns and gold.
Bays like Creel, Hatchery and the Snowy Arm all fish well. As the sun rises, change to a Tassie and cast further out over drop-offs, letting the lure sink before you retrieve with a slow wind.
For boat owners, the best way to start off the day’s trolling this month will be to try surface lines with lures to about 2m at first light, maybe with a lead core line at two colours to take the lures to 4m as a backup.
If you have been out a while and there are no bites, don’t persist. Instead, get out your downriggers and starting at 35ft with a lure dropback of 4m, you should start to see some fish. As the day brightens further, maybe go to 45ft by mid morning for the best fishing. On cloudy or rainy days you can surface fish until about 9am before going deeper.
The Tasmanian Devil number 111 Willy’s Special or Steve Williamson’s Lime Green Yellow Wing are the best deep lures at the moment, with Tasmanian Devil number 36 Yellow Wing doing OK on the surface and off leadcore lines early. Some of the better trolling areas this month will be deep water off Lion and Cub islands or the deeper water off Hatchery Bay and Hayshed Bay. Sid’s Bay through to Rushes Bay will fish well early in the day for big brown trout but the first hour of light will be the time to be there.
Over this month the best lake bait fishing will be early and late in the day. Mudeyes under a bubble float will be the best bait before changing to scrubworms off the bottom teamed up with some artificial bait maybe as the sun gets higher. Worms under a float is another alternative if you can’t get any mudeyes, which are slowly getting harder to collect once again due to the dry weather. The best bait fishing areas are Creel Bay, Hatchery Bay and Curiosity Rocks in the deeper water.
For lake fly anglers at the moment the best fishing has been in the early morning. There have been a few wind lanes about that if you see the ducks and seagulls on the water this is a telltale sign they are eating insects that are on the surface.
Some of the best lake flyfishing is during the coming months as the water cools ,and this year with so much weed around the edges of the lake we should see some big fish caught. Try any of the streamer patterns such as black Woolley Buggers and Williamson’s Gold Fish. Olive green nymphs and shrimp patterns are also worth a try. The South Arm, Creel Bay and especially Sid’s Bay are all great.
On the rivers the best flyfishing is in the evenings and there should still be plenty of evening rises and fantastic dry flyfishing for a few weeks yet.
The Alpine streams are still looking good and plenty of small fish are being caught on dry fly also. Fly selection isn’t too important in these streams but placement is critical or else you’ll just scare all the fish. Try a small hopper pattern, Royal Wulff or Royal Humpy. A caddis moth fly is also not a bad option. Well worth a look is the lower Mowambah near the weir on the Dalgety Road.
Here is your March round-up – the best of the best!
• Best method: lake trolling leadlines early then downriggers at 35ft.
• Best depth: 2m early to 35ft.
• Best lake lure: Tasmanian Devil yellow wing Freddo or Steve Williamson’s Lime Green Yellowwing.
• Best lake area: Deepwater off Lion and Cub Islands.
• Best fly method: dry fly – hopper patterns and Yellow Humpies.
• Best river: Thredbo River
My next weekend Beginners Fly Fishing Course is being held on 22-23 March, 2014. Call my shop on 02 6456 1551 and we will send you the details.
Sydney’s Family Fishing Show is also on in Parramatta on the 5th and 6th April (www.familyfishingshow.com.au) and I will be on stage with a couple of presentations. I would love to catch up with you and have a chat about trout fishing in the Snowy Mountains. Hope to see you there!
If you want to know more about the latest in fishing conditions, check out our latest reports on Facebook at www.facebook.com/LJTFA or visit my website at www.swtroutfishing.com.au.
Until next month, hope you catch the big one.Reads: 737