Welcome to April, cooler weather and maybe the start of the brown trout spawning season. The trout are just waiting for a little rain to start to run up the bigger rivers and streams. This also means a start to lure and flyfishing for some of the much larger aggressive spawning trout.
Remember that from 1 May, the rules change in the Thredbo to only one fish over 50cm per angler per day. While we wait for the spawn run to start, there is a little dry flyfishing on offer on the Thredbo some days but we will be swinging into the nymphing season very soon. If we get heavy rain and a rise in the river we might see a start to glowbugs and nymphs.
On the smaller alpine streams, the flyfishing has been very good and the streams still produce lots of small trout on dry fly. This is heaps of fun, especially if you are just getting into the art of flyfishing. Try a small hopper pattern, Royal Wulff or Royal Humpy or a caddis moth fly, but if you like, a small dropper nymph under the dry fly may increase you catch significantly.
For the lure anglers, the Thredbo River will only improve as the month goes by. The best lures to have in your tackle box will be jointed minnows as the brown trout start to become really aggressive and territorial. Other lures like the Gillies Spinas, Vibrax spinners or Celtas are certainly a must. You should try to use these lures in the smaller alpine as once again these little fish can be a lot of fun! I always crimp the barbs for easy release.
Lure spinning on the lake will also improve this month as the water edges cool down but you may find the best spinning to be early and late in the day. Fish steep drop-offs with plenty of rocks to get the best results. In shallow bays I like to use the glow in the dark spinners and some of the small soft plastics like the Strike Tiger spotted brew colour or pink. Bays like Rushes, Hatchery and Creel Bay all fish well. The best areas have been down at the South Arm or near Banjo Patterson Park, but as the month progresses, Waste Point and the Snowy Arm will start to fire.
Flyfishing on the lake has gotten better as the water cools around the edges. Try any of the streamer patterns such as Craig’s Night Time or a black Woolly Bugger. Olive green nymphs and shrimp patterns are also worth a try. The South Arm, Creel Bay and Hayshed Bay area are all productive.
Boat trolling on the lake over recent months has continued to be excellent and now that the lake water temperature is cooling into the trout comfort zone they are happier to move close to the surface, which makes the fishing a little better for those anglers that do not have deep trolling gear like downriggers.
We will start to use pink and orange Tassies this month as the fish also move into spawning and aggression mode, but for now, green and gold Tassies like the Willys Special and maybe the Canberra Killer Tassie will be good. Most of the minnow lures I use at this time of year all have a little orange on them as well. The best way to attack the fish is to start off the morning by surface trolling lures and maybe a lead line with two colours out so the lure is about 3m deep. Later in the morning you can still target browns by fishing close to the bottom in deeper water with the aid of downriggers. I find about 20ft of water is a good place to start.
The Tasmanian Devil number Y48, the yellow wing Brown Bomber, and the holographic Tasmanian Devil are the best overall lures to use on the lakes, however this is the time of the year that we sometimes start to move into pink or orange colours. It is also well worth running the Brown Trout or Spotted Dog type minnows as the trout become more aggressive. Of course if you are targeting the really big brown trout then you are best off using really big lures like 9-13cm minnows. I find jointed minnows best as you can troll them a bit slower and still have good action on the lure.
Some of the better trolling areas this month will be Sids Bay through to Rushes Bay, but this is a tricky area to fish with the lower lake levels and you need to be diligent as there are trees and shallow spots that can pop up out of nowhere. Also try Waste Point or Creel Bay for downrigging as there may be a few early spawning brown trout about but they will mostly be deeper at 2ft or so.
If you want to know more about the latest in fishing conditions just give me a call on (02) 6456 1551 or check out my website at www.swtroutfishing.com.au. I have started to build my new website – www.fishingcourses.com.au, so have a look at it and I would be grateful for your feedback.
Until next month, hope you catch the big one.
• If you would like some personal guiding, I will be available over the coming months for fly-fishing tuition and lake trolling trips. Lessons can be booked from 2 hours’ duration, and trolling trips from 3 hours to a full day. If you want to know more about the latest in fishing conditions, just give me a call on (0264) 561 551 or check out my website at www.swtroutfishing.com.au. You can also see our daily Facebook updates at https://www.facebook.com/LJTFA.
April roundup: the best of the best!
|Best method||Surface trolling early and then using lead core lines at 30m out|
|Best depth||Trolling 5m of water early then 35ft middle of the day when sunny|
|Best lake lure||Tasmanian Devil number 111 or Y82|
|Best lake area||Hayshed Bay and Waste Point.|
|Best fly method||Dry fly – Parachute Adams or black cricket. Wet fly||- black weighted nymph.|
|Best river||Thredbo River above The Diggings|