Snow dumps will help
  |  First Published: September 2004

THE ARRIVAL of Spring this month comes not a bit too soon, with a long Winter dumping plenty of snow on the mountains – which, of course, will be great for our river fishing over coming months.

The snow is now melting in the mountains and the lake water is rising after what was a very low Winter level, due to the work being carried out on the Jindabyne Dam wall. When the water starts to rise each Spring, we arrive at what is regarded as the best polaroiding time.

In this issue of NSWFM you can read a feature about how to polaroid lakes and you will notice that I emphasise that polaroiding is not just for fly anglers. I have seen plenty of results where casting unweighted worms to cruising trout has by far outfished a fly.

With the fish now cruising in shallow water they are often a little spooky, so whatever method of fishing you prefer, presentation is of utmost importance during the next few months.

The work on the dam wall is now in full swing with the coffer dam on the way to completion. By the time they finish the temporary road over the coffer dam it will most likely be December, so there will be plenty of traffic delays until that time. Most delays over the dam wall will occur in the middle of the day so you time your travels early and late in the day you should have very little trouble getting trough. Of course, there is no delay if you’re coming over the mountain through Thredbo.

With the lake level so low over the past month, some anglers have been saying that the fishing has been bad but the opposite is actually true. I can honestly say that we have been experiencing some excellent fishing and once again I congratulate NSW Fisheries on their stocking program.

We have definitely been experiencing an increase in catch rates since the introduction of the Snowy Mountains Lakes Strategy plan a few years ago.

Let’s have a look at the best ways to catch a trout this month.


Spinning from the shore is very popular and the best lure Tasmanian Devil colours are gold No 36 or No 50, the green and gold frog pattern. When the fish are spooky you are better to downsize to a smaller, less splashy spinner like the Gillies Spina or a No1 or No 2 Celta. The green and gold is a great Spring colour.

The best spinning should be near the rocky points at spots like the dam wall, Curiosity Rocks and Taylors Bay at Kalkite.


This is one of the best months for polaroiding fish (using polarised glasses to spot the fish in the water) and you will often see fly anglers stalking fish in the shallows. Shallow, weedy bays like Hatchery Bay, The Claypits and Creel Bay at Waste Point are good locations, with the best flies olive nymphs and yabby patterns.

Remember to keep low and out of sight!


With the trout often cruising the shallows early in the morning, that’s where you have to fish.

Flatlines are best before sunrise but after sunrise lead-core lines run about two colours (20 metres) out will get about three metres deep with a Tasmanian Devil lure. You will need to troll in about four metres of water to get the bigger brown trout.

A depth sounder will help with keeping the boat in the correct depth but don’t expect the sounder to pick up fish in this shallow water unless it is a more expensive, quality unit. Just because you don’t see fish on the sounder doesn’t mean there are none hiding in the weed.

Tasmanian Devil lures are very popular for trout and over the past few months you can’t go past the No 48 brown bomber early and then the No 36 yellow wings on the brighter days.

If the day is very sunny and bright, try using lead-core line at three colours (30 metres) after about 8am and fish the deeper water near rocky areas. Best areas to try are East Jindabyne Islands, The South Arm and Waste Point.


Worms and Berkley’s PowerBait are very effective at the moment and with the water still cold, the fish stay close to the edges. The best PowerBaits at the moment have been the lemon, lime and orange twist. These float and are best fished off the bottom using a sinker. Because there is little in the way of insect activity over the cooler months, trout mainly feed off the bottom of the lake.

Hatchery Bay and Waste Point are good but most shallow bays that have water covering new grass will attract the trout to feed in close. Remember, be careful not to scare the fish.

My October trolling clinic is now booked out and I have decided to add an extra weekend course in early November. Cost is $330 and it will be held at Snowline Caravan Park. Call 0408 024 436 or email me at --e-mail address hidden-- and I will post out some information.

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