A festive Snowies fish

Providence sunset Xmas day 2017.

Merry festive season to all our FlyStream folk. I hope you’ll be able to get away for a fish, even if only for a short trip.

The week before Xmas is always hectic but I did manage a quick trip south for a boat/river session with David.

All dry fly; Elk Hair Caddis and Wulff patterns, and a bucket load of fish up to 2lb. This golden brown came out of the tannin-coloured Nungar Creek.

Brumbies and glass on Tantangara.

I squeezed in an evening session on Tantangara with Col but whilst the brumbies were hospitable, the fish were playing possum on a millpond lake.

Meanwhile, the days rolled on, and we finally left Canberra for a full 2 week break. The wind on Lake Eucumbene has been blowing from the north-east. Not my favourite breeze but its redeeming characteristic has been that it’s cool. Which is helping the patches of snow on the mountains you can see to the south of Old Adaminaby in their struggle to resist melting until the New Year. On Xmas day evening I had the pleasure of fishing Providence on my own. Not another car. Not another soul. Just me, 8 optimistic pelicans, 4 cormorants, and a sea eagle. I figured with all these pro fishers in attendance I had to be onto something. I’d hoped for some dry fly action but after an hour I changed to a small green Woolly Bugger. I then got onto a nice rainbow almost straight away, before failing to properly hook the next five.

Wallace Island rock and timber.

St Stephen’s day was spent fishing big dries off the rocks around the Frying Pan Arm, and around Wallace Island with flyfishing team Michael and Christina. With a chunky 3 lb brown on a black beetle pattern already on my tally sheet, we spotted a big cruiser. Michael set a trap, laying the fly down behind the visible remnants of a petrified tree – whilst I watched from a high point 10 metres up the bank. Watching a 5 lb plus brown, dorsal fin scything the water, engulf the large fly with its mouth visibly open as it swam towards its prey, was amazing stuff.

All in all, if you’re headed to the mountains, my advice is that the rivers and creeks have more water in them than I’ve seen for a long time at this time of year – and are well worth a look. Reports from all the lakes are mixed and whilst the bait fishers on Tantangara, and the Eucumbene trollers have been catching trout, flyfishing is sporadic and unpredictable. But awesome fun nonetheless.

All the lake levels are steady but the rumour is that’s about to change with the Providence Portal due to open in the next few days.

Tight tippets all and a safe and happy 2018!

An afternoon on the beach. There’s always something to celebrate even if just sunshine and ripple.