South Esk River in flood
The fly fishing season in Northern Tasmania has got off to an excellent start, with some of the largest floods in 35 years in the South Esk catchment. These floods provide great feeding opportunities for trout who forage for drowned worms and other terrestrials.
The South Esk Catchment drains almost 25% of Tasmania’s catchment area, and includes the South Esk, Meander, Macquarie, Lake, St Pauls and Elizabeth Rivers, as well as Brumbys Creek. At the end of the river system, the South Esk flows into Launceston through Cataract Gorge Reserve, where these photos were taken over the weekend. Huge rains during the past week have seen the South Esk and Elizabeth rivers flood extensively, with the South Esk measuring almost 6 metres higher than the summer levels that fly fishers would be used to! Imagine wading up the river, with your rod pointed to the sky: the water would still be above your rod tip…
These flood-flows translated to a flow of more than 1000 cumecs through Cataract Gorge on Saturday night, equivalent to 1000 tonnes of water a second! The Gorge Basin was covered in foaming eddies and mountainous riffles, as the river lapped just below the cafe that many of you would know.
More on the actual flood-fishing later in the week, so stay tuned.