In late June, all of East Gippsland was ravaged by floods caused by rainfall of up to 200mm over a couple of days. Normally at this time of year, I would be reporting on catches of monster trout from the closing weekend of the trout season, however under the circumstances I thought I would put in a few photos and give a some reports of the flooding that occurred in Central Gippsland, as many rivers of interest to anglers were severely affected.
The region around Mount Tassie had rain in excess of 150mm, which sent the Traralgon Creek into a flood the likes of which had not been seen since at least 1998. I went and took a few photos before I opened the shop, and also a few more after work. The water had already dropped significantly in the 8 hours that I was away.
I had hoped I might observe a big brownie cruising the grass paddocks looking for worms, but the water had already subsided back off the pasture. The river itself was nearly red in colour and looked like it was flowing at 100km an hour.
I went back up on the Saturday and the river had dropped back to a fast-flowing, healthy looking stream, yet the colour was still nearly red. It was amazing to see debris 7–8ft high in the trees and a scumline that indicated the creek had been nearly 30m wide where I was standing.
I’m sure everyone saw Lake Glenmaggie on the news: it was like nothing ever seen before. Two thirds of the lake’s capacity was getting released every day and there was still more water coming in, causing the water to pour over the wall and drown the small towns of Newry and Tinamba.
The bottom line is that Glenmaggie is overflowing and the Macalister River is inaccessible due to the extensive damage that occurred to the road to Licola. They have just copped so much this year, first with the fires and now with a second flood. I don’t know how long it will take for the Macalister River to recover, but I think it will be a long time. Some major stocking regimes will be needed to restore this river.
I spoke to Eric Wiseman from Fisheries and he informed me that they would most likely stock Lake Glenmaggie this year in September or October, with at least 5000 rainbows. They are not yet completely sure, however, about what stocking regimes they will employ to help this catchment recover.
Even though Blue Rock Reservoir received little rain compared to East Gippsland, the rivers feeding into this lake and the ranges to the north received a bundle. On July 2, the water level in the lake had increased by 10% to 56.9% of capacity, and was still rising. Hopefully it will be nearly full soon. This should make for some good fishing around the shoreline as newly covered ground will be perfect territory for a nice big brown to be searching for some drowned worms.
For more information about fishing Central Gippsland, contact Will at Allways Angling in Traralgon on 51748544.Reads: 1746