With summer fast upon us, we recap the first half of the trout fly fishing season in Tasmania for 2022/23.
Overview Of The Tasmanian Fishing Season
It has been one of the most incredible winter and spring season for fly fishing in Tasmania this year.
With rainfall well above average for this time of year, the lake levels have been at a maximum, with many spilling over.
High lake levels often lead to some excellent early season fly fishing, as trout feed heavily around the flooded lake margins where the water has broken out into new ground.
Conversely, the heavy rain has all but ruled out the rivers and streams, with many still remaining in flood. It would be a long time since river fishing has been largely unavailable until December. There has still been some great hauls of fish taken on nymphs in some of the smaller streams and tributaries, with the occasional day of dry fly fishing available during periods of reduced rainfall.
As usual, the best days of fly fishing on the lakes have been on cloudy days with a solid breeze blowing. These days have produced some phenomenal results when fishing wet flies both shore based and loch style. With so many fish looking to feed in close along the margins, there has also been some unexpected days of dry fly fishing, which is generally not in mind until around November - December.
Many anglers have experienced catches of 20 - 30 trout in a session, with some big fish coming to hand as well.
Most wet fly patterns have been successful, with our best patterns for use in Tasmania so far being the black fur fly and MKII woolly bugger for shore based fishing, and the orange beaded green straggle bugger, shrek and brown magoo for loch style fishing.
Tasmanian Fishing Mid-Season Highlights
There have been so many great days experienced so far this Tasmanian trout fishing season, with some particular highlights being:
- Opening weekend - this was surely the most memorable opening weekend in my years of fly fishing in Tasmania. For those who braved the typical weather conditions for the Central Plateau during August of snow, wind and freezing temperatures, the rewards were great. In particular, Little Pine Lagoon produced some ridiculous numbers of fish around the shorelines, with many caught on dry flies! (something almost unheard of on opening weekend in the highlands)
- Loch style fly fishing - an ever reliable method to catch trout in Tasmania has again produced the goods, with the highest ever number of fish recorded in our guiding journals. Fishing a team of three wet flies with an intermediate sinking line has been the most successful set up, and has been deadly throughout this first half of the season.
- Sight fishing to Tailing trout - finding trout cruising in shallow lakes and lagoons is always a highlight of the season, with this year being no exception. With increased water levels, fish have pushed even further into shallow, flooded margins and have been seen tailing almost with their backs out of the water, searching for new food sources. Walking around a remote lake or lagoon and spotting these fish provides an exciting prospect, and approaching slowly and making accurate, subtle presentations of your fly provides a challenge to any dedicated fly fisherman. Small black fur flies and fuzzle buggers have often been charged at from over a meter away to be intercepted by these fish, before screaming off to deeper water and putting up some memorable fights!
Expectations For The Rest Of The Season
Unpredictable weather patterns always leave an element of uncertainty around what is to come for the second half of the season. High water levels should both the lakes and rivers in good stead as temperatures rise and we have seen some good mayfly hatches on the lakes in the right conditions. From this point forward, our attentions generally turn to dry fly fishing, as the sight aspect of watching trout rise to your fly is something many keen fly fisherman come to Tasmania to experience.
Book Your Own Tasmanian Fly Fishing Tour
January and February are some of the most popular months for fly fishing in Tasmania - with spaces filling up fast, there's no better time to book your own Tasmanian trout fly fishing tour - you can book your fishing charter now to create your own trout tale...