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Stout trout worth shouting about
  |  First Published: March 2017



Summer is slowly on the wind down and the days will begin to cool off. March is a brilliant time to be out fishing because the days are more comfortable with high 20s and low 30s. Even better, the water temperature begins to drop and the fish switch on!

Tumut River

Over the summer months I didn’t talk much about the Tumut River, because this river is part of the Snowy Hydro and is used as a channel to distribute water to irrigators. As we all know, summer is when water is needed for farmers and therefore the Tumut is running super high and fast, making it difficult to fish and also dangerous.

Usually during mid to late march the flows start to drop back and it becomes fishable again. During summer the river is running above 1.2m (from the river gauge in Tumut) and this is much too high to fish. If it drops below 0.5m then it becomes fishable. You can find the river height readings on the NSW Water Info website or app.

Spin, fly and bait will all be great options for targeting the large trout in the river. The best locations to fish are just above and below a rapid, because when the water runs over the stones it picks up speed and dislodges food. This makes the perfect ambush location for trout.

Casting small spinners, shallow running hardbodies and even small soft plastics will be the best option. Bait drifting a few worms is a proven fish catching technique, and all you need is a small hook, a split shot 30cm up your line and a few garden worms. Stand at the top of the rapid, cast across at a 45° angle, engage your reel and let the worms swing across the rapids. This is a simple but effective technique.

Blowering Dam

As always, this dam has its magic moments, but they never come without hard work. The summer months produced some brilliant captures from the dam with numerous cod recorded over the metre mark. The dam will continue to fish well during March but it will be hard work.

Between March and May every year the boat activity dies down on the lake because anglers are trying to get their yearly river fix in while the waters are low. Now is definitely the perfect time to be on the water if you want to avoid the boat activity.

Trolling and casting with large lures during the dark is still the best method. The cod will feed early and late. They’ll still slow right down during the middle of the day. Once the days get shorter in April, the cod will start to switch on during the day.

MurrumbidgeeRiver

The Murrumbidgee River will now be our go-to location from about mid-March through until winter! As the water height starts to drop, the snags will become exposed and the fishing will be nothing short of amazing. Later this month it will be well worth a trip to the river, whether you’re a bait or lure angler.

Casting tight in against timber with both spinnerbaits and hardbodies, either from a boat or walking the bank, will be the best approach. Try to fish early and late in the day when the shade is still covering the water, because this is when you will catch the most fish. The Murrumbidgee River from Wagga Wagga all the way out to Hay will fish well. What makes me really excited this year is the major flooding that this section of river saw last spring. This means the fish had a bumper breeding season and would have also fed up really well. The fish should be extremely healthy, well-conditioned and super hard fighting!

If you are reading this in early March, make sure you save a week towards the end of the month and start fishing a river or creek near you. The action is going to be hot!

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