Steve Williamson's Trout Fishing Adventures

Lake Jindabyne
Site of the '1999 World Fly Fishing Championships'

Lake Jindabyne is situated in the Snowy Mountains of New South Wales, Australia and is regarded as the best trout fishing waters on mainland Australia with a full variety of fishing areas from tiny streams for 'dry fly' fishing to larger rivers for fly fishing and lure spinning to the larger lakes where all methods of trout fishing can be used including fly fishing, boat trolling, lure spinning and bait fishing methods.

Lake Jindabyne offers both WILD Brown and Rainbow trout as well as Brook trout and Atlantic Salmon (up to 20 pound) and all fish can be caught using all methods.
We practice 'Catch and Keep' on the lake and 'Catch and Release' on the rivers, but the choice is yours!

Looking west across the township of Jindabyne.

Jindabyne looking south from Kalkite.

Lake Jindabyne - There's always a good time to fish Lake Jindabyne. No matter what season there is always a method that works.

Fly fishing the Thredbo River.



One of the most common questions I get asked besides ‘what’s the latest fishing conditions’ is ‘What is the best time of the year to go trout fishing”?

“What is the best time to go trout fishing?” What a tough question to ask someone!

Seasons change from year to year. You can have and early winter or a late winter.

Summer can be hot, cold, wet or dry and all of these environmental conditions have an effect on the seasons.

As a horticulturist I was always taught to watch the plants and trees. The time they flower of maybe drop their leaves would be a true indication of whether the season is an early one of late one.

So what does all of this have to do with trout fishing – this so far has been more like a weather report!

Well the weather or more importantly water temperatures will often have a lot to do with the way the trout behave.

This is particularly important around the autumn/ winter spawning period for trout.

So ‘What is the best time to go trout fishing?”

I lot depends on what method of fishing you are going to use, but there is always a chance of catching a trout when you pick the right method for the right time of year.

Well this is a bit of a guess given normal seasons this would be my predictions with WHAT’S BEST and I will start with October being the time that the rivers open for fishing –

What’s best - month by month -

OCTOBER – (River fishing season opens on the NSW Labor Day long weekend)

Spinning and fly fishing the bigger rivers for late spawning rainbow trout.

Bait fishing early and late in the day on our lakes.

Spinning with lures on our lakes early and late in the day.

Surface trolling lures from a boat on out lake with best fishing early and late in the day.


Deeper water fishing on the rivers with lures and flies.

A start to dry fly season later in the month.

Boat trollers will still experience good surface fishing early and late in the day.


A start to the Alpine streams dry fly fishing.      

Good early and late bait fishing on the lake.

Good early and late spin fishing on the rivers with a chance of good fishing on the lake by targeting trout amongst the snags in deeper water.

Boat trollers with only surface trolling tackle will have to fish early and late in the day whilst those boats with downriggers will start to see some good deep water fishing even in the middle of the day.


Boat trolling very early and late in the day but the best fishing will be deeper trolling with downriggers.

Fly anglers should do well with dry flies early and late on the streams and rivers.

Lure sinners and bait anglers will find this month harder and best fishing will be before sunrise and after sunset.


Good dry fly fishing on alpine streams

Good downrigging on the lakes.

Average lure spinning and bait fishing due to warm water temperatures.


Dry fly fishing alpine streams.

Improvements to bait fishing and lure spinning on the lakes as water cools.

A finish to the best downrigging and a start to better surface trolling for boat trollers.


Middle of the day fly fishing on streams and rivers.

Surface trolling early and late in the day on the lake.

Bait fishing early and late on the lake.


Chance at some early spawning brown trout in the larger rivers like the Thredbo River.

Boat trolling better now for surface fishing.

Spin and bait anglers should also see better fishing now on the lakes.

Lake fly fishing also starting to improve early and late in the day.

JUNE – (Season closes for river fishing on the NSW Queen’s Birthday holiday weekend.)

Targeting the pre spawning brown trout on the bigger rivers using flies or lures until rivers close.

Trolling for bigger fish at the river end of the lake.

Bait fishing and lure spinning is steady all day on the lake.


All methods will work if you put on the right lure bait or fly and put in some time on the water.

Boat trollers will find that you need to put in time but trout will be spread out over the lake at all depths.


Start to the polaroiding season for shore based lake anglers. Spot cruising trout and cast to the fish.

Boat trollers need to put in the hours still but will catch bigger fish over this month as they are now getting hungry.

Bait fishing is improving on the lake.


Polaroiding the edges of the lake with lures, flies and baits.

For those with boats surface trolling lures close to the edges as the water rises after the snow melt.

Bait and spin anglers will experience better fishing this month.


Anglers usually like to fish early and late in the day so I have put together this chart so as you get an idea of starting and finishing times on the water.

Times set from 1st of each month.

Allow ½ hour earlier for first light and ½ later for last light.

Month (1st)

Sunrise AM

Sunset PM

Day length (hours)


















































Mark France with his 8lb Brown
Spring morning on Lake Jindabyne



Are there many trout in the Snowy Mountains waterways?

NSW Fisheries at Gaden Trout Hatchery stock over a million trout into our waters so there is a guarantee there are trout to be caught.

Am I guaranteed to catch a trout on tour?

When you are dealing with nature there is absolutely no guarantee that the fish will be biting on the day.

What are my chances then of catching a trout on my tour?

You are booking a ‘guided tour’, we can’t guarantee that you know how to fish, we can’t guarantee that you may hook up on a trout and then lose it, in fact we can’t guarantee anything as only you know how well you can fish!

If you want a guarantee that you will catch a trout you need to find someone that offers “Catching Tours” not fishing tours!

What we can guarantee.

We at Steve Williamson’s Trout Fishing Tours, provide you with the expert guidance and tuition to give you the very best chance of catching a trout, but while we can’t guarantee you catch a trout we can guarantee we will do everything possible to help you and we will ensure that you will have a great day and go home with at least an increased in knowledge about trout fishing the Snowy Mountains area.

Winter snow skiing and boarding at 'Thredbo' and 'Perisher Blue'­ The Mighty Snowy Mountains Scheme - Bush walk 'Kosciuszko National Park' and see alpine wild flowers in spring and summer ­ Horse Ride ­ Mountain Bike Ride- White water raft ­ Canoe - Sailing and Water skiing on Lake Jindabyne ­ Visit Craft shops, alpine wineries, Caves and Thermal pool, Art Galleries, Trout Farms, Ski-tube- Australia's only alpine railway. - 4 wheel drive trips ­ Dine at award winning restaurants and take in a movie at Jindabyne's modern theatre. So much to do and lot's, lot's more. The non ­ angler is always kept busy.