THIS is when the weather can get real nasty around here but don’t let that put you off – some of the biggest trout of the season get caught now.
Brown trout will be close to spawning, depending on the weather and water levels in our creeks and rivers, although the past two or three seasons have been tough. Hopefully, with a little rain there will be some trout moving up the creeks and rivers from some of the dams.
Be prepared to walk long distances as not all parts of rivers are suitable for spawning. If you don’t like to target spawning fish there are always quite a few egg-stealing rainbows and cannibalistic browns stationed directly downstream from spawning fish.
Floating minnows such as Rapala 5cm and 7cm models are good along, with some of the Rebel minnows. Glo Bugs and drifting nymphs, either on their own or in combination, also work well. These can be cast with fly tackle or on light spinning gear. Keep in mind that the season for trout fishing in the streams around the Central Tablelands ends on the long weekend in June.
Pre-spawn browns can also be targeted in our lakes. Lake Lyell has a very healthy population of browns that quite often accumulate in the upper reaches of the Coxes and Farmers Creek arms, where they wait for the right conditions to run upstream. It is not easy fishing, though, as eating anything is quite often the last thing on their minds.
Big floating minnows up to 75mm can get an aggressive response along with large minnow-style flies such as Matukas, and Woolly Buggers.
Thompsons Creek Dam is another local fishery that can produce some quality fish in June. Bright red and orange coloured lures and flies can get an aggressive response at this time. Mepps spinners and Gibbs spoons are trusty stand-bys. I like those bleak, cold windy days up at TCD which seem to stir up the fish a little and encourage them into shallow water.
With the warmer weather of April and early May, the fishing was pretty good for native fish. June is usually a different story. Golden perch and cod in dams such as Windamere and Wyangala really start to slow up.
With water temperatures dropping fast, the fishes’ metabolisms slow right up and it’s time to conserve energy. This is why bait fishing works so well at this time of year. A bunch of smelly scrub worms lobbed close to fish and left to sit will eventually be just too inviting.
For lure anglers it’s a case of how slow can you go. Soft plastics dosed up with some scent and fished as bait, with just the odd twitch, will get you some fish. Patience is the key though.
Suspending deep-diving lures, worked very slowly around structure, can work well at times. Give the lures lots of pause time, not five or 10 seconds but 30 or 40 seconds – maybe even a minute. It’s very hard to do but if you want to catch cod and golden perch on hardbodies, that’s what its going to take.
It’s good to make use of any large high-pressure systems that drift across the region. Usually the tail end of the system will give the best results. Concentrate on banks that have a northerly aspect as these will have the warmest water. The best time to be on the water is from mid-morning to mid-afternoon.
June is possibly a little early to target big redfin in Carcoar and Ben Chifley dams; quite often July and August are better. That said, June does produce some big boppers. Those high-pressure systems I talked about earlier for our natives have the same effect on redfin.
After finding fish on the sounder, the vertical approach with baits or soft plastics is the way to go. Some form of anchor is also a good idea as this will keep you over the fish; they don’t tend to move much over Winter.
If the fish are scattered, you are possibly better off drifting over the general area and keeping your baits or jigs at the right depth.
At the time of writing, Carcoar Dam was at only 7% and still falling so it may pay to check with the authorities before travelling any distance to fish the dam.
So there you go: No excuses, rug up and get your backside out there. You won’t be alone because I will be out there somewhere, too.
Remember, you can catch me bright and early Saturday mornings on Australia’s No 1 fishing and boating radio program, Hi-Tide, with Kieren and Bruce, on 2KY.
Big egg-stealing rainbow trout are the norm in June as browns begin their spawning run. Bright lures and flies can get an aggressive response.
Neil Bell from Wallerawang does not let Winter stop him fishing. Just add an extra coat and get out there. This lake Wallace rainbow was caught on a juicy bean of Berkley PowerBait.
That’s close to 6kg of Winter golden perch from Lake Windamere. The large lure was trolled very slowly on an electric motor with lots of pauses and the fish hit after a long wait over a small rock bar.Reads: 494