From the Archives ...

The Lowland Rise

Mark Salisbury

Tassie fly fishers and regular "blow-ins" like myself will remember the 2006-7 Tasmanian trout season for the late season dry fly bonanza that took place on the lowland rivers in the northern midlands. The only thing preventing the fish from rising every day was inclement weather and even then a few fish could usually be picked up by visiting notorious insect hatching "hot spots'.
Some of the hatches were immense and the dry fly fishing was outstanding. Every single fish we caught during March and April was stalked, seen or ambushed. On certain days the fish were working themselves into a feeding frenzy likened to the spectacle of bronze whalers rounding up pilchards in the surf. We couldn't even reel in our fly lines without fish slashing and smashing dry flies as they skidded and waked across the surface. The late season fly fishing in northern Tasmania completely eclipsed the early and mid-season's sport.

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When you have finished for the day, why not have a brag about the ones that didn't get away! Send Mike an article on your fishing (Click here for contact details), and we'll get it published here. Have fun fishing - tasfish.com

2017 04 13 Golden brown... there's still some beauties to be caught - Adrian Webb 2017 04 13

Today I decided to have a trip to a small stream/creek in the upper reaches of Gunns Plains it's one that I haven't fished for six years. The reason I decided to check it out was because I was going back through my diaries and came across a report of one of my trips to it. I have no idea if it's has a name or not as it's one I stumbled onto one day while checking out a few back roads that crossed over small creeks & streams in the area that flow into the Leven River. It's very over grown in most sections and calls for some accurate casting.

There's a couple of reasons I hadn't been back there one was because the trout seemed to have disappeared for one reason or another and second I had completely forgotten all about this little stream/creek. Before the trout disappeared it gave up some very solid wild browns in the 500-700 gram range with a few odd 1 kg -1.5 kg range. I thought seeing as we did have some good rains several days ago it may be well worth the one hour plus drive there and have another crack at it. Once there and a short walk through some thick scrub it wasn't long before I was in the dark tannin coloured water flicking the little gold Aglia around. Not that there's all that much room to flick it as it's very tight fishing here and casting accuracy is essential. The very first pool I had a bow wave appear behind the spinner but I ran out of water before the trout turned and moved off. In next stretch of river the same thing happened with a large bow wave appearing behind the spinner only this time I had a solid hit and miss. Several more cast and retrieves in that piece of water without a sign of that fish again. That's what normally happens with a hit and miss the same fish rarely comes back. So the first two short stretches of river have both had fish in them which was a good sign so now it's only a matter of time before I'll have one in the net.

The next couple of shallow runs was quiet with no sign of a trout but I knew there was still some good runs ahead of me yet to be fished. As it happened the next fast water gave up my first wild brown here in six years. It was only a small brown of around 250/260 grams and one I didn't bother photographing for that very reason. The following two narrow and heavily covered runs I managed to pick up three lovely browns all solid well conditioned fish with two of them coming after one another from the same piece of water. I weighed each fish while still in the net and they were 520 grams500 grams & 560 grams and beautifully coloured fish too. They had that deep golden brown colour in them really wild brown trout that's for sure. I did manage to flick the spinner into the tea trees every now and then much to my frustration they don't let anything go once it goes into them. Not that it was a problem reaching them it's having to go and retrieve the spinner and spooking any fish that's ahead of me that ticks me off more than anything. I did spook quite a few fish on a couple of occasions too. Still this is what happens when fishing small heavy foliage covered streams/creeks is all about it's part of the challenge in getting it right.

Though sometimes I do tend to try the impossible cast which pays off and other times it's total disaster. I do love fishing in these conditions though because I feel it does make one a better & more skill full trout fisher in the long run. With around three hundred meters or so of river left before I was to call it a day I caught & released another five browns from eight hook ups as well as having five hit and misses. These fish were like the others all solid fish ranging from 560 grams through to the best brown being 630 grams. So my trip here was well worth the 75 kilometer drive today and one I'll do again before the season ends. The good thing was that the trout were back and all good size fish for such a small stream/creek. It amazes me the size of the trout in these small streams/creeks they're often bigger fish than what's in the large rivers. It could be that the larger fish have better survival skills in small rivers and less competition for foodI have no idea but what ever it is I love it. Today's catch has lifted my season tally to 573 for the season may just scrape home with 600 by seasons end with a bit of luck. I'm not fishing over the Easter break as there's just too many campers and other fisher's out and about.

Adrian Webb


 2017 04 13 630 gram brown

630 gram brown

 

2017 04 13 Golden brown

Golden brown

 

2017 04 13 Tail fin worn from spawning

Tail fin worn from spawning

 

2017 04 13 Very tight for casting here

Very tight for casting here

 

2017 04 13 Well conditioned brown caught here

Well conditioned brown caught here

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