Alpine rivers remain in excellent condition this week with lots of both rainbow trout and brown trout on offer. Anglers are finding many fish are absolutely full of wattle (or willow) grubs as they feast on this annual food bonanza. Grubs can be difficult to imitate as a fly as the grub tends to curl up on contact with the water and all fly imitations that are tied according to the accepted pattern are in an uncurled posture.
Bogong High Plains: Rocky Valley Lake is producing mainly brown trout to 700 grams from around the shoreline on a variety of live baits presented on light gear (i.e. 2 to 4 kilograms b/s line and rod and reel to match), with no sinker and a size 14 light wire bait or fly hook about 80 centimetres below a half-filled small bubble float. The best live baits this week include mudeyes, maggots and hopers. Anglers need to bring all the live bait they may need with them as only scrubworms are available locally.
Lake Guy: Lake Guy has been a disappointment for some time now and continues to be difficult and uninviting to access around the shoreline. However, fishing from a low-powered boat opens up all sorts of opportunities and enables anglers to reach the areas where trout are. The two inflow streams, east Kiewa River and Rocky Valley Creek, are producing brown trout to 500 grams on a variety of size 16 dry flies and small lures although fish tend to be shy as many anglers have tried for them in recent weeks.
Kiewa River: The Kiewa River at Tawonga is producing mostly (only?) brown trout to 1.5 kilograms this week for fly fishers on size 14 to 16 Kossie dun, grey wulff, March brown and similar lightly-toned and high-floating imitations. A size 14 weighted nymph placed 30 centimetres below the dry fly can act as an attractor and it’s often the fly that trout go for. The Kiewa River has been especially kind to anglers this summer with good numbers of wild trout caught (and hopefully most were released) since Christmas, according to reports.
Mt Beauty Pondage: The Mt Beauty pondage has not been very popular in recent weeks as anglers prefer to fish the rivers and streams. The pondage is 80% full this week and holds rainbow trout to 1.5 kilograms and brown trout to around 850 grams in weight. This is the only artificially stocked water in the whole alpine region. Both rainbow trout and brown trout yearlings are released into the pondage just prior to summer each year. Masses of stick caddis nymphs and mudeyes frequent the reeds and grassy areas that become accessible to feeding trout as the water level rises and falls, ensuring they dine well and reach impressive sizes within a short time.
Upper Mitta Mitta River: The upper Mitta Mitta River from Glen Wills to Anglers Rest and on to Benambra remains in excellent condition with lots of mostly pan-sized trout caught in recent weeks. There have been reports of concerns over the water temperature which has varied since mid-December, but with timely summer rain falling in the area on several occasions that concern has never come close to being critical.
Bundara River: The Bundara River at Anglers Rest holds good numbers of typical mountain stream brown trout. The stream level has dropped and become slightly warmer as summer advances, with trout tending to feed at night with better fishing experienced early in the morning and after dusk. It follows then that very few fish are being caught during the middle of the day at present.
Cobungra River: The Cobungra River at Anglers Rest is in reasonable condition at the moment as it reacts to the effects of a long hot summer. The stream flow has fallen as is normal for this time of the year and the water temerature is rising but not critical. As a result, trout are not as co-operative this week as they were earlier. Best fishing times for the Cobungra River this week are from 7.00 pm to 10.00 pm when trout are feeding and rising more freely.
Lower Mitta Mitta River: The lower Mitta Mitta River from the township of Mitta Mitta to Eskdale is in marvelous shape this week. Lots of brown trout and rainbows to 600 grams. some larger, are being caught by all fishing methods, according to reports. Best baits at the moment are live wattle (or willow) grubs if anglers can find them and mudeyes and crickets and hoppers, drifted under a half-filled small bubble float.
Snowy Creek: The Snowy Creek at Granite Flat has fallen slightly and producing mostly brown trout to 450 grams on a variety of size 16 dry flies and small lures. Bait anglers are also doing well using drifted wattle (or willow) grubs, according to reports.