Hot action in the highlands
  |  First Published: October 2009

November is always the month that the trout fishing in the highlands really starts to peak.

Now that the gate into the 19 Lagoons is open and the weather has started to warm up, the lakes are really firing for all angling methods.

Lake Echo

Lake Echo has gone from being a little fished water to one of the most popular destinations, all in the space of a couple of months. Having a steadily rising level helps, but the stocking of triploid rainbows by Inland Fisheries over the past five years is now really paying dividends.

Inland Fisheries need to be commended for their investment of fish and resources into his fine waterway. Boat ramps have been upgraded over the past few years and anglers now have easy access to all points of the lake on the productive western side.

There are still loads of brown trout to 3lb fossicking in the shallows, however the gum beetles wont be far away, and then fly fishers can expect to really see those big triploid rainbows surging up the foam lines sipping them down.

Lure anglers have been doing very well by casting bibbed minnows, soft plastics and the traditional Tassie Devils into the drowned trees and along the rocky shores. Many of these fish are in top condition, meaning a good feed as well as great sport.

19 Lagoons

The 19 Lagoons, or western lakes are the jewels in the highlands crown. These shallow lakes and tarns provide some of the best sight fishing in the world – in fact anglers travel from all corners of the globe to sight cast to brown trout cruising over sandy alpine flats.

Apart from the feature fishing on blue sky days, the 19 Lagoons is a top area to find tailing trout and bigger trout hunting frogs in the marshes.

Catch and release is the norm out here; they don’t taste so good and with limited spawning in most of the lagoons you will helping sustain the fishery.

Arthurs Lake

Arthurs is nearly back to its good old self again. Water levels are back to the point where boats can negotiate their way through the Lilypads, and the Cowpaddock has good water in it again. The fishing so far has been a little on the slow side, mainly due to the fish spreading out so much I think. With so many stretches of newly flooded ground, the fish have plenty to choose from.

As usual the reliable areas for lure fishers are the Morass, Hydro Bay, Creely Bay and the eastern side of Brazendale Island. The water is still a little murky, and does colour up significantly in strong winds, but give it a season to settle and we shall certainly see it back to its clear-water best.

It will be interesting to see if the mayflies come back straight away – either way the beetles, caddis and midges will draw enough fish to the surface.

Great Lake

This lake is just marvellous at the moment. The high levels have flooded ground that hasn’t seen water for nearly ten years. As such there are some bruising trout starting to hunt the margins looking for grubs and worms.

The rocky shores are also fishing very well as the trout start to look for galaxia hiding in amongst the rocks. Lure casters are probably doing the best here, but persistent casting with bigger wets will draw results.

With the advent of the gum beetle falls in November we should see plenty of fish up in the waves looking for them, so the fly fishers will be happy!

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