Nothing beats fishing Lake Eucumbene on a sunny day in September: You feel like the warming sunshine is not just getting the vegetation going again but is also activating a few aching old bodies that have suffered a bit over the colder months!
The fishing has been pretty good and by now, when most of the browns are back in the lake after their spawning runs and the rainbows are starting to move up, there are a lot of very hungry fish just waiting for your baits or lures.
We’ve had a great Winter with plenty of snow on the mountains and good rain at lower altitudes so the rivers and creeks are running fast. Eucumbene’s level has been steadily rising for the past three months and we’re hoping for decent Spring rain so the lake will continue to rise until January or even later.
This means that the creek and river fishing is going to be sensational, just like it was last year.
In July we had three hard-working boys from DPI Fisheries staying at our park for a couple of nights. They were checking our creeks and rivers for the spawning browns and in September they’ll do the same with the rainbows. The browns result was very satisfactory and I don’t think we have to worry about them dying out.
For the first time, Snowy Hydro was allowed to use its cloud-seeding technology to boost snowfall over the northern end of Kosciusko National Park. The very positive outcome could mean more snow for Selwyn skiers and more water for Eucumbene anglers when the snow melts.
This is a great month to get a big brown trout. Some of our best browns have been caught spinning from the banks at this time of year.
On sunny days use bright colours like gold, yellow or orange. Tassie Devils or Lofty’s Cobras with a single hook are very effective and heavy enough to give you some distance so you can cover a lot of water.
Let the lure sink for a while before retrieving it, because most Browns are looking for yabbies or worms on the bottom.
In rising water levels you can find fish cruising very close to the banks so distance is not always the answer.
You should be able to manage at least a couple a fish a day without too much effort. Berkley PowerBait in lime twist or orange cubes are working wonders with the rainbows but the browns still prefer scrub worms or a delicious wood grub.
Good spots include Adaminaby Bay, Cemetery Point, Springwood Bay, White Rocks Inlet, Illawong Headland, Anglers Reach and Old Adaminaby.
This is when you can get good use out of a side planer, particularly when the fish are close to the bank or in very shallow water where you can’t get in with your boat safely without spooking fish.
The best times are early morning and late afternoon but the side planer can be used all day and it sure helps to keep the trolling lines apart.
To maximise your catch and to fish all through the day, you need a downrigger or lead-core line as well as a flatline. The lead core works all through the year and is ideal if you want to get the lure down and bounce it over a yabby bank.
In the middle of the day it’s a must to have means to get the lure down deeper because most fish move to deeper water, particular during sunny days.
The boat ramp at Old Adaminaby has been working well during Winter and even better now with rising water levels.
When you read this Anglers Reach hopes to have new gravel boat ramp ready so now there are two boat ramps to access the lake.
This year’s snow season was good and the melt has started with the Eucumbene and Murrumbidgee rivers running high with lots of clear, icy water entering Eucumbene and Tantangara.
Although the days can still be cool, if the winds abate good fly fishing will be enjoyed around the lake.
Best areas are the bays which have been devoid of water for the past few months but are now starting to fill. The newly vegetated areas are havens for insect life and as they become inundated the trout enter to forage.
After a cold winter they are generally fairly ravenous and indiscriminate feeders.
For those gearing up for the opening of the streams on the October long weekend there is still time for a bit of maintenance of lines and reels.
During use fly lines collect a fair bit of grit and dirt and an annual clean is a good idea.
Wash them in warm water and after allowing time for them to dry properly, apply one of the many good proprietary fly line dressings. Your line will glide through the rod guides far more smoothly and a little TLC once or twice a year will prolong the life of your line by a season or two.
Don’t use Armorall or any other petroleum-based product to clean your line, like one of Peter’s friends did. This guy was ecstatic about how slick his line was initially but then quite distraught when over the next month it gradually disintegrated and had to be replaced.
Reels should be stripped down, cleaned and re-lubricated with appropriate reel grease or oil. Automotive lubricants are generally not suitable for fishing reels.
For regular fishing updates visit www.alpinetouristpark.com.au/fishing.shtml and www.adaminabyangler.com.au/reports.shtml . For weather at Lake Eucumbene scroll underneath the Alpine Tourist Park’s fishing report and click the link to the weather station.
If you’re fishing the rivers early in the season, they will be running quite quickly and it is important to get your fly down to where the fish are feeding as quickly as possible. One way is to use a tungsten or bead head weighted nymph or Woolly Worm on a single fly rig. Another way is to use a two-fly rig and use split shot to get the bottom fly down, as in the diagram:Reads: 1951