THE SNOWY Mountains Trout Challenge, featuring the Shimano Celebrity Trout Challenge, saw some of Australia’s best trout anglers teamed up with a vast variety of celebrities in this trolling and spinning event which was part of the bushfire recovery program and supported by the Federal Department of Transport and Regional Services.
A full report of the highlights and winners of the Challenge will be in the next issue. If you missed out on the event this year, keep reading NSW Fishing Monthly for the dates for next year’s event.
Due to the success of the inaugural event NSW Minister of Tourism Sandra Nori, announced that the Snowy Mountains Trout Challenge will receive $10,000 for 2004 to help with marketing and advertising. While the bushfires, drought and general doom and gloom of the 2002/03 trout season have now long passed, this season is shaping up to be one of the best in many years.
The snow season was one of the best in many years, with regular falls supplying the water necessary to bring our lake levels back to respectability. In the case of Lake Jindabyne, levels are topping record heights with new ground inundated from as early as late September. By mid-October the water was well and truly covering grass and shoreline caravan parks were about to lose part of their camping areas.
What this will do for fishing over the coming Summer we will have to wait and see but going on my previous experience, we should be in for some fantastic trout fishing. November starts with the Snowy Mountains Trout Festival, a week of angling fun for all, so let’s have a look at what the best methods are going to be.
Spinning from the lake shore with lures such as the Tasmanian Devil is very popular and the best Tassie colours to use in November will be yellow wings No 36 or the green-and-gold frog pattern, No 50. Best spinning areas on the lake are those near the rocky points, such as the dam wall, Curiosity Rocks and Taylors Bay at Kalkite.
Fly anglers should concentrate their efforts in shallow weedy bays like Hatchery Bay, The Claypits and Creel Bay at Waste Point. Best flies to try are Olive Nymphs and yabby patterns.
So far the rivers have fished very well, with some fantastic trout caught in the Thredbo River. It would seem that with the late snow and rain the rainbow trout spawning season extended a little and there are even a few fish about now.
Streams such as the Mowambah have fished exceptionally well also and this month a little more dry-fly action should be happening. The Royal Wulff and White Wulff are two good flies to try and it won’t be long before the brown beetles will be about in the tea trees.
Lake trollers over the last few months can’t go past the Tassie yellow wings No 36 or Rowley’s Riot, No 89. The ever-faithful No 48 brown bomber is another great lure when fishing the deeper water.
If the day is sunny and bright, try using lead-core line at three colours (30 metres) and fish the deeper water near rocky areas. Best areas to try are East Jindabyne islands, the South Arm and the Waste Point area.
Using worms or bardi grubs is another popular method of catching trout. The baits are best fished off the bottom using a sinker. Mudeyes (dragonfly larvae) are now lurking the waterways and the fish are on the lookout for them, so try one suspended under a bubble float half-filled with water to reduce its buoyancy.
Areas to try are Hatchery Bay and Waste Point but most shallow bays that have water covering new grass will attract the trout to feed in close. Remember in these areas be careful not to scare the fish.
• We still have bookings available for our Snowy Mountains fly fishing weekend on November 22 and 23. This weekend is all about giving anglers experience fishing by many different locations in the mountains. We arrive at the water, assess the fishing conditions as a group, put theory into practice and try to catch a fish, then move onto the next location to do it all over again.
This is a great experience for novice anglers wanting to learn how to fish, or the experienced who want to learn new fishing locations. Give me a call on 0408 024 436 or email me at --e-mail address hidden-- If you want the latest in day-to-day fishing conditions, call in to my new shop at the Snowline Caravan Park next to the Shell Servo.
Alex Rosen with a 2kg brown trout caught in the Thredbo RiverReads: 491