September is one of those months that bursts with fishing potential. Bigger Australian salmon start to hunt the estuaries and bays, bream are thinking about really having a red-hot crack and the trout fishing is good too!
The pick of the inland waters during September are the lower-altitude lakes like Lake King William, Lake Burbury, Bronte Lagoon, Tooms Lake and the lower catchments such as Craigbourne and Brushy Lagoon.
Most of the fish in September start thinking about feeding in shallower water and generally become more adventurous in their feeding habits.
Lakes like Bronte and King William, which have gently sloping shores with weed and mud flats, should see some tailing trout action. These fish tend to sneak in and out of the shallow water looking for small scud, snails and stick caddis, and present some marvellous fishing opportunities. Flies such as the ever-reliable Fur Fly, black Woolly Bugger and Woolly Worm are good – and it is always worth floating a dry fly like a Red Tag over these fish as well.
The lower lakes will have active feeding fish much earlier than the top-altitude lakes, simply due to the water being warmer. Tooms Lake is a classic example: the fish will be sipping dries as early as the first week in September, where you will have to wait another month for that up on Arthurs and Great lakes. Having said that, wet-flyfishers on Arthurs will have a ball, especially if you fish down around 3m or so.
Anglers using soft plastics will be fishing during the peak of the season for this technique – quite often bags of good healthy fish are taken with the use of stickbait-style plastics such as the Berkley Power Minnow series. Pumpkinseed is the best colour and my favourite but any lure with a greenish tinge should do well.
Also top of the list with lures is the ever-present Lofty’s. These lures define Tasmanian lurefishing and the green, red and gold lures are fantastic, especially cast from the shore among the trees.
The estuaries can become unfishable at times when big floods come through but the flip side to this is the fantastic fishing in between the freshes. Bream love to feed on stuff washed out of the banks and rivers like the Swan, Scamander and Ansons are really good in this regard. For above average bream the Derwent is still the pick of the spots with the bonus of sea run brown trout in the mix.
Offshore the action is really restricted to deep sea fishing for stripey trumpeter and big flathead, however the more adventurous could pick up some lovely big couta!
Neil Grose is a flyfishing guide based at Rainbow Lodge in the Tasmanian Central Highlands. Neil and his team of specialised guides can offer tailored fishing packages for highland lakes, lowland rivers including raft based fly fishing, and estuary fishing for bream and other great sport fish. Check out the website www.flyguide.com.au or call Neil and Nicole on 03 6259 8330 for more details.
Andy McKinley with an Arthurs Lake brown trout on a very rough day.Reads: 1413