Prime trout territory
  |  First Published: November 2004

Well, much like the rest of the state, what a great time of the year it is for all in the piscatorial world in the state’s northeast.

The Dartmouth area usually fires about now. Up on the dam, trolling early and late in the day will produce trout, primarily browns, but you can always expect those fit rainbows to get into the action, too. Trolling around the main basin with Lofty’s Cobra lures will work, but I highly recommend you take an outfit with leadcore, take along some snap weights or a downrigger simply because most of the best action will occur between 5-10m. Flatlining in the twilight will work, but the best bet will be going deeper.


Below the dam, on the pondage, the warmer weather we’ll experience this month will spark the aquatic life into full force and this will get the trout into action. Mudeyes fished live under bubble floats will be the best method. Take along the longest rods you’ve got, say 2.1-2.4m being ideal. This will aid casting distance in a big way. Mono line about 2kg, a fine gauge size 12 hook, a bubble float and a live mudeye is all that’s needed.

The recent heightening of the wall has certainly made accessing here a little tougher, but a pair of waders will be very handy. Lurecasters will take fish but the numbers you can expect will be fewer than the past couple of months. It is really hard to beat the Cobras here. They cast like bullets, stand out like the proverbial and the trout love them. As for colour, I suggest any one that is primarily silver.

On the rivers

On the rivers, the Mitta Mitta is back to the very high flows like it used to experience most summers. It certainly makes for a much tougher time for anglers, but certainly not impossible. I have recently fished here a few times casting Cobras and sinking Rapalas, targeting the slacker water, but even that water is still fast.

There was plenty of walking to find this sort of water but the small browns seemed very keen. This is traditionally the month of the best flyfishing with the big dun hatches, but it will be certainly tougher because of the flows.

Over the other side of the valley, the Kiewa will be very much the same. Up on the mountains around there, plenty of snowmelt has fed the river making it very fast. On the fly scene, better action will be here rather than the Mitta Mitta, with the river being a little less regulated, therefore warmer. Dederang upstream to Lake Guy at the tiny town of Bogong is one of the best areas to target trout.

Plenty of options exist in the upper Murray area. The Murray from Tintaldra upstream will be a great trout option, as will the Nariel, Thowgla and the Cudgewa. It is great time for fly anglers, particularly on the bigger waters.


The fishing on Khancoban certainly starts to get tougher this month, but confident anglers fishing live mudeyes always do well. Numbers usually taper off but the great news is that there is every chance of getting among the well-conditioned fat browns. Certainly worth the effort I think and expect the odd bruiser redfin as well.


1. Rivers like the Mitta Mitta will be running reasonably high, but minnow lures will take trout in the quieter water off the main flow.

5. Certainly no monster, but all river cod are a pleasure to catch. Ashley Barber shows another AusSpin victim before it is sent back.

6. To the author, this is just about as good as it gets in the northeast. Aaron Lezius got lucky last year on this monster cod of 95cm casting from the canoe.

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