file Upper (ish) Howqua trip...

  • Posts 13

silkwood created: Upper (ish) Howqua trip...

Spent 4 days over the Christmas break camping near Pikes (I get permission to head off by myself every second Christmas). Hot days, cool to mild nights and almost no-one around (with the exception of my mate the black snake who lived in the log next to the river- there each morning sunning himself before moving on).

The fishing was excellent, everything from youngsters throwing themselves at the fly to some serious heavy cruisers in the deeper pools. Water level is good, not too strong but enough to provide a good flow and some great swimming holes.

I caught fish on everything from dry fly to nymphs (on droppers and indicators) to wet. The best part for me was my first attempts at Euro Nymphing. Took a while to get used to but some lovely fish coming from runs I would have (actually did have) no chance at with other forms I know (of course, the limitations are most likely my own). Some very large fish in those pools!

Very good fishing right now, should anyone be heading up that way.

Cheers,
Mark
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  • Posts 2

coregan replied: Upper (ish) Howqua trip...

Thanks for the update Mark, I am heading there myself tomorrow for the weekend after a long hiatus. It is good to hear the river is fishing well again after a couple of tough years of low water and a seemingly absent trout population.
Cheers
Connor
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  • Posts 21

trouttree2k9 replied: Upper (ish) Howqua trip...

thanks for the tip mark, headed up there yesterday and it exceeded all expectations.
Conner, when you get to the bigger pools make sure you've got some decent tipped on 6lb +. I didn't, what broke me off will haunt me for long time!
p.s. corn hill logging track is closed you'll have to come in past bindaree but
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  • Posts 5

MilesM replied: Upper (ish) Howqua trip...

Great to hear that. Did you see any big carp up in there in the pools?
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  • Posts 13

silkwood replied: Upper (ish) Howqua trip...

I certainly didn't see any carp up there Miles. Hopefully they haven't made it that far up yet. Must say I didn't see any around 8 Mile (earlier in the season) either, though a number of people have reported them there.

Cheers,

Mark
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  • Posts 20

jakewinther replied: Upper (ish) Howqua trip...

Cornhill logging tracking has been closed for years and is serious twin locked 4wd + winch only action.
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  • Posts 2

coregan replied: Upper (ish) Howqua trip...

Hi all,

Further to the above reports, I spent two days over the weekend fishing the Howqua at both the lower reaches (Tunnel Bend, 6 Mile, 7 Mile) and upper reaches (Pikes Flat to Bindaree Flat).

We fished the lower sections on the stinking hot 41 degree Friday and unfortunately the fishing was quite poor - perhaps this was due to the heat but only a couple of fish were seen for the whole day and between my friend and I we only took one small fish between us. We fished upstream from Tunnel Bend for a few hours before embarking up toward 6 Mile and fishing our way to 7 Mile. Plenty of carp seen all along this section (notably in almost every deep pool) which may have something to do with it.

We drove up to Bindaree Flat on the Saturday and due to only having a 2WD vehicle, took the 4WD track to Pike's on foot. We saw a few fish in the early stages of the afternoon before the heavens opened up on us for approx 2 hours. A couple of fish were hooked and lost during this time (mostly on nymphs) including a nicer fish of around a pound. Given the above post, I also decided to try my hand at Euro nymphing for the first time and only managed one small Rainbow - I am still quite unsure of the technique behind this but will continue persisting. Eventually I swapped to a double nymph rig under an indicator and ended up faring better and managed a nice 1lb rainbow after the rain let up. On dusk, my friend managed to take a couple of nice fish on a shaving brush fished blindly and dropped a nice brown.

Unfortunately we both underestimated the time it was going to take to hike back out to the car park and ended up getting out at around 10.30pm after many annoying (and deep) pool crossings and bush bashing. If anyone is ever back through that way my nice McLean weigh net is hiding somewhere in the scrub above on of the deeper pools up and is up for grabs. Plenty of nice fish spotted in this upper section however and I suspect it is rarely fished due to the difficulty of access.

Nothing more to report other than a tough day at the office! I am heading to the Upper Swampy this weekend and will hopefully have a bit more success up that way. A couple of pictures below for you guys.

Cheers
Connor

Sweet relief after making the hike from Bindaree into Pikes!


First fish landed after enduring 2 hours of heavy rain
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  • Posts 298

Mitta replied: Upper (ish) Howqua trip...

Tough times but a nice report, Connor.

Thanks for taking the time and the trouble.

Mitta

The older I become, the better I used to be.
I recently started on the Gin & Tonic diet - so far, I have lost two days three days four days . . . a full week. :-(
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  • Posts 13

silkwood replied: Upper (ish) Howqua trip...

Upstream of Pikes is certainly fairly rough, eh, Connor? Twice I bashed my way out and up to the road to return to camp. It's exhausting stuff.

The "Euro Nymphying" takes a bit to get used to, I'm determined to get better. Over four days I started to get the hang of it a little, but I struck on more rocks and twigs than I did fish.

About three quarters of the way up the straight upstream from Pikes (around the bend from Pikes) there is a very large pool with a log covering a significant drop. The pool extends across for around six metres and is around 14 metres long, probably two and a half metres deep at the deepest point (I used it for a swimming pool one day). The first day I fished this section I started at the tail of the pool with a nymph on a raw wool indicator. I caught a lovely one pounder which I released before casting to the middle of the pool. I immediately hooked up again, but this lasted around four seconds, before I broke off. Feeling bad that I had left a fish with not just a fly in its mouth, but trailing a metre of 7X with a wool indicator attached (poor knot skills?) I fished on.

On the way back, I decided to try a Euro Nymph rig on the same pool. Sure enough, on the third drift I hooked up. The fish took off towards the tail of the pool, allowing me to see a solid four-or-more pound trout leading me around. Sadly, it broke me off. It broke off at the lower nymph. The upper nymph was still attached, trailing one metre of 7X and a wool indicator!

Cheers,
Mark
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