Tasmanian Western Lakes pre-season exploration
Crazy! That’s what my mates said when I mentioned I’d be spending last weekend in the Western Lakes wilderness region. My reasoning was sound though, a pre-season reconnaissance mission out to new waters, to see how the winter spawning had went, and find a few doors to knock on come August—perhaps a trophy water or two that I would return to come season’s opening. It’s staying one-step-ahead, which is important for me as a guide.
Despite having to walk 12 kilometers more each—way than I would have had to during the season (from Lake Augusta to Ada Lagoon and back again the next day, on a very boring and long road subject to seasonal closures), the mission was a success. A couple of dozen trout were polaroided (but not fished to of course!) picking snails off rocks in the frigid waters. The lakes and lagoons themselves weren’t completely overflowing, but were quite full and beginning to flood into semi-permanent backwaters. These water heights set the scene perfectly for a great September flood, the timing that leads to the best tailing trout action Tasmania has to offer.
Of the trout polaroided on a walk from the Zig Zag lakes to the main Christys Creek lake, and back down to Talinah Lagoon, all had the appearance of trout that had spawned months earlier. In fact, all the spawning creeks crossed along the way were completely void of spawners. This was good news, and indicated that the trout had already moved back into the lakes to begin feeding again—awesome news for early season anglers. Some trout, including a six-pound-plus brown trout polaroided cruising in the shadows of ancient pencil pine’s, were well and truly back into feeding mode.
Everything points to a big-fish-season for 09/10. Lots of water, early rains, and early spawning have got things off on the right foot, both on the lakes, and on the rivers Bring on opening day, 1 August 2009!