Just one more sleep!

That’s right, Tasmania’s 2007/08 wild brown trout season opens tomorrow, August 4, and runs to April 27 2008.

That means the heart and sole of Red Tag’s environment, the rivers and streams are on again.

Not that there is much fly activity this time of year, we are still in winter downunder, down under, snow caps are still on Hobart’s beautiful Mount Wellington, but we have gone past the shortest day and the fish are thinking about feeding again.

We have had some good cold days this winter to help kill off the germs and remind us that Spring is not far away when water levels are rising, those nymphs start moving, the insects start hatching and the trout start visibly feeding.

Continue reading Just one more sleep!

Fly Fishing Workshops

workshop in action

“Fly fishing is an art, an art well worth the learning” maybe putting it a little on a pedestal, or should that be easel, but it is a great way to fish, not too difficult to get the hang of and once learned usually ends in being your preferred (if not only) way to fish.

In other words, it lets you stop and smell the roses while pursuing your fishing passion.
At Red Tag Trout Tours we offer a range of fly fishing workshop options, from short days to full (wild fish inclusive) days and extended tours that build on the day to day experiences covering still waters, rivers and streams and a variety of fly fishing techniques. You can even add in a session or two of fly tying as well.
Continue reading Fly Fishing Workshops

Season’s Availability

calendar for bookingsIntroducing our new availability calendar for the coming 2007/08 season.

We will keep this updated so when looking at your next, or first, Tasmanian fly fishing adventure with us you can check out availability and sort out what best suits your travel time.

August 4 is opening day for Tasmania’s famed wild brown trout, so no rivers and most lakes are not open until then, but we do have workshop availability, hence the May to July period is included in our calendar.

Check out our Bookings Calendar 2007/2008

Please note: Our calendar is temporarily out of action. Please enquire via the contact form in the meantime.

The wild brown trout

To me the wild brown trout is the ultimate fly fishing challenge. Since its introduction to Tasmania in 1864, from eggs of English wild stock, the Tasmanian wild brown trout has remained disease free and uncontaminated. It could well be claimed to be the purest strain of wild brown trout anywhere in the world.

The most exciting fly fishing test is dry fly fishing to the sighted, feeding fish. Be it rising to the local hatch, clear water polaroiding or shallow water tailing, the wily brown is always a challenge.

When you get it right and the fish is drawn to your fly like a magnet, you say to yourself, this is easy, only to have the next fish come to the same fly, balance it on its nose and refuse your perfect offering as not good enough.

My home fishing territory, Tasmania, is predominantly a wild brown trout fishery of world quality. The majority of our waters, rivers and streams and creek fed lakes or lagoons are self sustained populations. Of the balance, the vast majority of highland tarns and non-stream fed waters are managed by the introduction of wild local area fish transfers not farmed fish.

A group of South Australian friends learn the art

SA mates

From left to right — Rebecca, Tom, Jane, Jason, Paul & David head in for lunch after the introductory casting and morning fishing sessions.

Note the nice kg+ brown Jason is carrying, having just caught his first ever on the fly — dry at that.

The venue here was Currawong Lakes, an ideal location for group workshops. With Jenny looking after the catering in excellent lakeside facilities side it enabled me to concentrate on the casting and fishing requirements for the day where six were looked well after.


In the afternoon, as skill levels grew and with increased insect activity, more fish came to the fly with yours truly netting Rebecca’s first, in this case a very nice rainbow.

It wasn’t just the anglers making firsts. It was the first time I had seen Robin Redbreasts taking hatching duns off the water in the same way as the swallows do.

In fact Jason had one come so low over his emerger pattern it actually created a ‘false rise’ imitation with the wind from its wings.

Fishing tales • First timers • Flies • Dry • The fish • Wild Brown Trout •

Fly before food


That is dedication and determination for you.

Ernst, along with his friends Andrew and Jen, was staying at our Cliff Top Cabin where we had had a short tying session the night before.

Determined to get the copper bead-head nymph right Ernst is so engrossed in the tying job, his fresh, done to order, breakfast remains untouched.

As you can see below, he also had some great fishing times over the three days.


Gerald makes his #4wt work


Here, regular Red Tagger Gerald is giving his favourite lightweight rod a real workout.

Right in the middle of the grasshopper season he had his best trip (fish wise) ever and totalled something like 20 to hand over two days, with as many more to the fly. Well done mate!

Deadly Dragon (flies) of Tasmania!


I know that the dragonfly is a very territorial insect, but this was a rare chance to capture one actually devouring an intruder.

You can just make out the poor Blue Damsel partly hidden by the light brown reed in the foreground being cleaned up, so to speak.

If this was not unusual enough the other day, another client was fishing a dual rig with a dry hopper pattern on top and a small bead head nymph under when, as he cast up stream about 30 feet or so, a ‘big’ dragonfly attacked the hopper in flight, caught it and flew back past us carrying both about four to five feet off the water.

It was only the eventual drag of the fly line going downstream that pulled it clear of the dragonfly’s clutches.

I had just about focused with the digital when it let go.

I was wondering if any other fly fishers have seen such an action by a dragonfly?

I know of swallows, etc. picking up or swooping on dries, but never an insect do this.