72 Hours fly fishing on Tasmania's Central Plateau

Go fly fishing on pristine private lakes, chase trout in a glacial lake, or help with the chores at your hillside farmstay; there's plenty to keep the avid fishing enthusiast busy in this itinerary. 72 Hours fly fishing on Tasmania's Central Plateau
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72 hours fly fishing on Tasmania's Central Plateau

Go fly fishing on pristine private lakes, chase trout in a glacial lake, or help with the chores at your hillside farmstay; there's plenty to keep the avid fishing enthusiast busy in this itinerary.


By Steve Starling

What to expect

  • Take in the natural beauty of the Central Plateau
  • Go trout fishing in clear Tasmanian lakes
  • Enjoy a hands-on Tasmanian farmstay

 

Fast facts

  • Time: 3 Days
  • Distance: 315 kilometres or 195 miles
  • Transport: Car
  • Nearest Major City: Hobart
  • Price: $$$

The lakes and freshwater streams of Tasmania are famous for their brown, brook and rainbow trout (best from February to March). But there is plenty to see and do for those who don’t fish, from visiting the island’s whisky distilleries to enjoying the beautiful landscape of the Central Plateau.

DAY 1: SHEEP, LAKES AND TROPHY TROUT

Fishing at 28 Gates, Derwent Valley, Tasmania

Morning

The luxury boutique farmstay, 28 Gates, is a one hour drive through the lush Derwent Valley from Hobart, or a two and a half hour drive south from Launceston. Leave straight after breakfast to give yourself time for sampling the delights of country bakeries, whisky distilleries such as Redlands Distillery and roadside stalls full of seasonal fruit from fresh-picked cherries to crunchy apples.

Owners of 28 Gates, Susie and Michael, will greet you on arrival, along with their dogs, chickens, horses and sheep that live on the 2225 hectare (5500 acre) property. Sling your gear into the beautifully restored, self-contained 1862 sheep shearer’s quarters stacked with handmade supplies, and then pull on the supplied waders before heading out to catch a trout.

Afternoon

There are five private lakes on 28 Gates’ property perfect for fishing. The fat brown rainbow and brook trout will hopefully be lured by your damsel flies or silver-winged mayfly spinners. While the average trout is around two kilograms or four pounds, some lucky anglers have reeled in beauties here weighing as much as 4.5 kilograms (yes, that’s a genuine ten pounder) And because you’re on private property, there’s no risk you’ll have to share the shore.

For those in your party who are not fishing, they can go on scenic walks, go bird watching (up to 60 species) or help with the daily farm chores.

DAY 2: WILD TROUT ON TOP OF THE WORLD

Thousand Lakes Lodge, Tamania

Morning

Rise early (like the trout) for that final cast at 28 Gates, or stay snuggled in your king-sized bed re-living yesterday’s fishing feats before a leisurely breakfast of farm fresh eggs, bacon and field mushrooms.

After checking out, drive north for an hour or so up the rugged escarpment onto Tasmania’s Central Highlands. Past the blue-mirror water of aptly named Great Lake, you’ll enter a heritage-listed world of uniquely Antipodean sub-alpine flora and fauna. Spot wallabies, wombats or even a rare Tasmanian devil amid the low bushes and tussock.

The weathered timber exterior of Thousand Lakes Lodge rises from the highland mists, squatting low in a textured patchwork quilt of shrubs and bushes, just a long cast from the stony shores of Lake Augusta. The Lodge’s simple wooden exterior belies the fact that this is a seriously luxurious “fishing shack”, including an open-plan communal area with Chesterfield sofas by the fire.

Afternoon

Your expert guide will meet you after lunch to discuss the afternoon’s options. In mid-summer, there’s really no rush. You’ll still have enough light left to tie on another fly at 9pm, although with venison pie, local wines and a host of other delights on the menu, chances are you’ll want to be back long before dark.

As the name implies, there are more lakes than you’ll have time to discover. There’s a good chance you’ll visit one of the Nineteen Lagoons: shallow, clear glacial tarns that are justifiably famous in international fly-fishing circles. These clean waters are well populated with wild-bred, chocolate-spotted brown trout (best from February to March) that can be traced back to British stock transplanted here in the 1860s. Their ghostly shapes glide over the silt flats of the small lakes. Pick their path, cast your fly, set the trap and cross your fingers.

DAY 3: COMING DOWN FROM THE ULTIMATE HIGH

Sullivans Cove Whiskey, Hobart, Tasmania

The lakes and freshwater streams of Tasmania are famous for their brown, brook and rainbow trout (best from February to March). But there is plenty to see and do for those who don’t fish, from visiting the island’s whisky distilleries to enjoying the beautiful landscape of the Central Plateau.

Make your trip happen

Property Type
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Main Course

Prices are indicative

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