Early Season Fly Fishing on the Tumut River
Written by Pat Ryan and Jimmy Barwick.
The time is finally upon us! The NSW trout season of 2022/23 is here and is off to a fantastic start. Recently we went out for an afternoon fish along the banks of the Tumut River to take advantage of some early-season activity after many months of cold weather and no angling pressure on the river. Spring is a fantastic time to target trout in the rivers, after completing their spawning cycle during the closed season, the fish are keen and ready to eat flies!
With the consistent rainfall over winter, the Tumut River has been flowing at near-maximum levels, bringing its own challenges to fishermen at times. The high water can make wading problematic, presenting difficulties in accessing the entire river.
Upstream nymphing the slack water and drop-offs will prove to hold large numbers of trout, and is a very productive method. Using a variety of heavy nymphs run deep in the water column, is a tried and tested technique and will continue to produce results throughout the season. In saying this, stalking the banks to polaroid cruising fish can be a reliable fallback when you have optimal light conditions and water clarity. A dry dropper rig is the most appropriate set-up for this situation.
It wasn’t long until we found some action!
Jimmy snagged the first, and Pat wasn’t far behind, two stunning rainbows were brought to the net!
As they moved upstream, working the water methodically, more fish came to hand, and in true Tumut River fashion, the rainbow trout put up a solid fight due to the abundance of food and their healthy condition.
Finding the right type of water in conjunction with the correct fly choice was key to our success that afternoon, and made for a productive session on the banks of the Tumut during these high water flows. With the NSW trout season off to a great start, we’re keen to see how the next few months will pan out with plenty more fishing and hopefully more fish to come!