A Guide to Fishing Lake Pedder
Many forms of angling techniques have been tried on Lake Pedder, with mixed results - some have been very successful, and others say they have struggled to catch a fish! The following are methods used by seasoned anglers who use or change their fishing technique as required - so read on and be prepared to change methods to catch a fish.
Fishing gear to use
Hard body lures of all sizes (like Rapala X6, F7, CD7 and so on), Artificial flies, Tasmanian devil lures, stump jumper in 55 size, and fish cakes (no, not the ones from the fish and chip shop).
Shore spinning, fly fishing, fish caking after dark, trolling from a boat, or drift spinning. We will look at the following as a guide, and one of these methods will suit your level of experience and fishing gear.
This can be very rewarding and many places are available and easy to get to by vehicle. Serpentine area is very deep and a good place for shore fishing. Consider early morning and evening till after dark, when fish caking is the time to catch a trophy fish. Spinning from shore with hard body lures, or Tasmanian Devil lures can be very productive at times.
There can be vast wind lanes all over the lake at times, and they’re regularly full of feeding fish. A boat is required and (very) early mornings in Summer and Autumn is the best time to target wind lanes. On flat shorelines where you can reach the water’s edge by foot, fly fishing using mud eye patterns, damsel fly patterns, beetle dry flies like red tags, royal coachmen, and nymphs will catch fish - especially in summer months. A vast range of speciality flies for this lake are available such as the Yum Yum fly, the “Pedder Parrot”, and beetle patterns. In the wind lanes you will usually find what the fish are feeding on so try to match it with a suitable fly. When in doubt, a single, weighted, brown nymph stripped quickly in front of the nose of rising fish can almost always guarantee a strike!
This method is very effective when the light goes off the water and night falls. Be sure to check the shore line where you want to walk along for hazards before dark, and have a torch with you. The secret of fish caking is to check the propeller on the lure to see if it’s working. The technique for checking is to blow on the front of the lure, and ensure the propeller spins freely. If not, bend the blades slightly until it does. Your first cast is parallel with the shore line approximately 2-3m out. Once cast, the lure will plash on the surface and settle - let it sit there for a few seconds, then commence a slow retrieve say 5 to 6 turns of the reel then pause, vary this method with each cast and, as the lure returns, you will see and hear the propeller spinning on the water. A further tip is to keep your rod tip up - this allows the propeller to sit high in the water. Cast either side and cover the entire arc; then have a rest for a while, and then do it again. Fish will often follow the lure in to your feet before taking it, so be prepared for a shock. Most of the big fish in Pedder were caught using this method and, in winter time – preferable with a near- moonless night. All colours seem to be effective.
Trolling from boat or other craft
This can be a very effective method, as a boat allows you to venture far and wide, and fish sheltered shores. Anglers use various methods from flat lining (braid or monofilament direct from reel to lure) using shallow running lures like Tasmanian devils and hard body lures, through to lead lines, where you can get down to where the fish are holding. Both methods and lure types have their advantages, and the speed you troll at is the secret. Personally, I like to troll at between 2.5 to 2.9 km an hour, which should be the speed where your rod is ‘twitching’ as you troll a Tasmanian Devil or hard body lure along behind. Vary your speed to allow your lure to work at its best, and change lures or colour until you start catching fish. Keep an eye out for depth changes along the shores, as fish will often hold up on the “drop offs” where there is a change from 1.5 to 2.5 metres deep.
This method is the most popular, and accounts for a vast number of fish. You can choose from soft plastics to hard bodies, this technique used around bays creeks and timber shorelines will give you the best chance of catching fish. One day a lure will catch like mad; but the next day you will use the same lure and hardly catch a fish, so be prepared to try different methods and retrieval speeds. Cast from the boat towards the shore, or cast amongst the timber and you’ll have most success.
Most of all, have a good, safe, time and enjoy the Lake Pedder Wilderness area experience.