Time to sight-fish the lake
  |  First Published: August 2003

So far this Winter, the weather has been about average for the area. The snow came on time and the brown trout headed into the rivers for their spawning run, as normal. It all looks good for Spring.

The bushfires last January may have burnt out a lot of the Snowy Mountains National Park, but there has been no effect on the fishing other than the little bit of debris that has fallen into the river and been washed down into the lake. I would say if you’re boating on Lake Jindabyne this Winter or Spring that you keep your eyes on the water for floating logs. Warning signs have been placed around the lake about floating objects. They might even slow down the water skiers this Summer!

With only one month of Winter to go and August being such a great time to sight-fish trout cruising the edges of the lake, the water levels are perfect this year.

The Snowy Mountains Trout Challenge, set for October 16 to 19, is shaping up well with some of Australia’s best anglers competing in the two-day celebrity event. Although you may have already missed out on a position to fish the competition, there are still vacancies for volunteers.

There is also the fantastic Fishing Carnival on Sunday, October 19, near Quality Resort Horizons at Jindabyne. This day will also include a Family Fishing Competition and fly- and lure-casting competitions for age groups to enter. You can also see NSW Fishing Monthly’s own Lynn Bain cooking up a few tasty trout recipes. It’s going to be lots of fun and there are many thousands of dollars’ worth of prizes to win. You also get a chance to meet Australia’s best trout anglers and the celebrities who will be attending. For more information please contact me – I’m the event co-ordinator.

If you’re coming to have a fish in August, we had better look at my predictions for this month in more detail.


Lures such as the Tasmanian Devil in colours like the pink No 55 or the brown No 48 are sure to catch a fish or two. The better times are early and late in the day but you can still catch fish near the rocky points and deep drop-offs during the middle of the day. Some of the better winter areas are the dam wall, the Claypits and Wollondibby Inlet.


August is also one of the best months for polaroiding fish (using polarised glasses to spot the fish in the water) and you will often see fly-fishers stalking fish in the shallows of the lake edges and casting their flies to the fish. Green nymphs fished near the weedy areas should catch a fish for you.

Fish quietly and approach the water only after trying to spot a fish. The western shoreline from Curiosity Rocks to Hatchery Bay is excellent to spot fish during August, and don’t forget to keep away from ‘my’ area, over at Sids Bay!


This is our most popular fishing tour during Winter and we almost always catch fish. The best lures to use at the moment are Tassie Devils in numbers 55 and 72, with No. 50 (frog pattern) also effective on the sunnier days. Fish the township end of the lake during August because the water is that little bit warmer and the fish a little more active. Lion and Cub Islands and East Jindabyne Islands are excellent trolling spots.

Bait fishing

The brown trout are nearly all back from spawning now and are looking for something to eat. During Winter a bunch of worms fished on the bottom or suspended under a float should entice a fish to bite. Bardi grubs are also another great Winter bait.

Again, fish the shallow, weedy bays early and late in the day and the rocky, deep drop-offs during the middle of the day.

If you’re down in the Snowy Mountains over the next month and you would like to join me on one of my charters, just give me a call on 0408 024436. Visit www.fishnet.com.au/snowyfish for all the latest reports and find out more about our Winter tours.

• I’m offering a free fly rod to all readers of NSW Fishing Monthly who book and pay a deposit for our beginner fly-fishing school on November 1 and 2. The offer ends on October 1. Call me or email to find out more.


From left, Gaden Trout Hatchery manager Sam Crocker, local MLA Steve Whan, Premier Bob Carr and Fisheries Minister Ian Macdonald check out a breeder brown trout about to be released from the hatchery into the Thredbo River.

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