Steady as she goes
  |  First Published: March 2004

MARCH is a very steady time of year as far as the weather goes.

The harsh Summer heat starts to fade and Old Man Winter is still at arm’s length. The mozzies and flies are not quite as thick and the holiday crowds have slowly dispersed. I guess you could say there is some sort of normality returning to the year.

Our trout streams have again been affected by low water over Summer but, thankfully, not as bad as last year. The Fish River has been very low but it was great the other day to see some of the Spring release fish making their way around the shallows.

The Duckmaloi is spring-fed and has fared much better over the Summer. With steady weather, now is a great time to target ‘the Fish’ and ‘the Duck’ with a dry fly. Red Tags in a few different sizes are very handy, as are some small Black Spinners down to size 15 or 16.

March will still see the odd big grasshopper about, so don’t be afraid to tie on an imitation, especially when you first get down to the river in the late afternoon. Even if you do not see any fish rising, by this time of year the fish will be quite used to seeing the odd ’hopper smack down on the water and will move long distances to take one.


Thompsons Creek Dam has had quite a bit of angling pressure over the Summer. I have fished the dam from when it was first opened and have seen the pressure increase as the seasons go by and the word has spread. It is great to see anglers from far and wide enjoying such a fantastic trout fishery and they have to be commended on the way they have conducted themselves there.

But not everybody goes away with a smile on their face. As with every fishery, it has its little secrets. With very clear water, light line and small offerings are the key, especially during daylight hours.

Low light periods and windy days are another little secret. Some of my best fishing up at TCD has been on the bleakest days of the month. Prominent points and a long swing drift with the fly line are the keys. Maintain contact with the fly, usually a small, soft-hackle wet, and let the wind and the waves give the fly action with just the odd twitch every now and then. This type of retrieve takes quite a bit of concentration and patience – a short smoke break or a bite to eat helps between drifts.


Wyangala natives continue to turn it on and I cannot see March being any different. The bite started way back in July-August 2003, firstly on bait and then on the lures as water temps rose. The bite has had its peaks and troughs but it continues on. The cod are not quite as numerous as they have been in past seasons but the average size is up a little.

Some of the more popular trolling runs have copped a far hiding, so it may pay to search out areas offshore that do not see the boat traffic. Shorter trolling runs up in the timber in the Abercrombie or Lachlan arms, which are a little tight and harder to deal with, should see you back among the fish this month. No 2 Stump Jumpers in darker colours have been moving off the shelves quicker than they can be supplied. Viking Talismans have also been doing very well.

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