September 2017 Burley Line (Newsletter Issue 125)

Wow!  Luke C has revamped Burley Line to make it a much more polished newsletter – many thanks for your expertise mate.  He has has also taken on the job of assisting Nathan with our Facebook page and social media in general – please assist with being active in both the blog and Facebook spaces.

This month is a packed issue with AGM results (new committee – again, well done folks – and trophy awards), lots of fishing reports (thanks again Lyall and Ash – inspiration for many of us and topics for interrogation 🙂 plus the report on our recent event at Bondi Forest Lodge.  I hope you enjoy the material and the new format.  Please reply to this post with your comments and suggestions.


A bit About the River They call Skagit

Our jetsetting Secretary has achieved another first.  His recent love affair with two handed rods led him to explore the Skagit River.  Lyall is sure other Australians have been there, it is just that he doesn’t know any of them!

Lyall has suggested that anyone intrigued by this whole two handed caper ask Peter Morse for a try of his during the 3 Sep casting days.

Another place on my bucket list.


Fly Tying – 23 Aug 2017 – Chironomids

This month Nathan will be showing us how to tie chironomids also known as buzzers or midge larvae.  They come in a huge array of colours and can be tied to float head up, tied bead head as a point fly, tied with or without gills or oxygen bubbles.

The materials you will need are:

– hook – pupa or caddis curved hooks #14, 16 or 18 or as small as you dare

– thread – black, olive or red

– silver ultra wire

– peacock hurl

– white poly yarn or similar


For those interested in entomology, take a look at  which will tell you why red buzzers are red (red pigment haemoglobin to help them absorb oxygen), where they live and life cycle.

All Natives Anglers – Save These Dates

The 2017 MEJ BIG Burley Bash is being held at Lake Burley Griffin over 10 weeks, every Thursday evening starting 5th October. This event will see anglers target the yellow belly species – the BIGGER the better.  Fishing will take place from 6:30pm to 9:30pm each Thursday, and points will be accumulated over the 8 weeks, with one week of finals.

Planning is underway getting flyers and registration forms organised.  Once completed they should be available from Burley Line or direct from

Threat to Close Googong Southern Gate

Those who read the August newsletter will be aware, but there is some more information here.

Late in Jul an alarm was raised that the ACT Govt was looking to lock permanently the southern gate to the Googong foreshores (down near London Bridge and Burra).  There was a quick response from the angling community, especially ACTFF, and through them the Environment Department was called to explain the situation on the ABC Local Radio (666) Drive program on Wed 26 Jul. Go to:

The interview with Matt Kendall was at 4:07PM but the recording starts at 3:00PM. If you fast forward about a third of the way through you’ll hear it.  The key outcome is that the Department is looking to install an automatically locking gate in lieu of sending rangers down to lock the gate each evening

The key complaint is the opaque manner that this had been considered by the Environment Department. From here on our energies should be focussed on ensuring the Govt consults with the public as the performance of the gate is examined – probably through their Recreational User Group. Also to ensure irresponsible damage to the gate doesn’t give the Govt an excuse to take the option to permanently lock the gate in the future.

Readers might consider signing a petition started by Andrew Wall MLA.

Update – Trout Stocking Experiment at Oberon Dam

Received this encouraging message from the ever energetic Steve Samuels. Members might wish to be a part of this experiment – it involves catching trout folks!

We’ve now learnt that fish were over 20cm when stocked.  The tag is the same as the yellow tags we’ve seen on ex-brood stock released into Jindabyne so will be easy to identify.  Don’t forget to phone in the number to receive the promised lure.  Hopefully anglers will carefully release any caught to continue the experiment.  While they are under legal size, they ought to be big enough to compete against redfin predation.

This is shaping up to be a very useful experiment.  I will keenly await advice on the results if I can’t get up there myself. (Shame that Oberon is outside NSW CFA Region 3 and 4 so any trout we caught would be ineligible for a CAA trophy … unless we have an official event there – now that’s an idea we can discuss 😁).

Dear Supporters

As you may know, as President of the Monaro Acclimatisation Society Inc, I have been campaigning for a better approach to fixing our problems with many of our trout dams in NSW.  Most of you will be aware that redfin have become a serious pest, and where they have colonised in trout waters, the rainbow trout have virtually disappeared.  Earlier this year I was successful in gaining support for the development of a NSW Trout Strategy to try and get better trout fishing in the dams that now have redfin.

Yesterday (Monday 17th July) a small but significant experiment was launched at Oberon Dam.  NSW Fisheries have released 500 tagged yearling trout into the dam and the hope is that anglers will fish for them over the next season and report their captures.  One of the significant approaches will be to see that if stocking bigger rainbows will allow them to survive the redfin.

Below is a short statement from Cameron Westaway on this stocking and I hope that all of you who fish here will support the experiment as it will inform us for future stockings.

We have a long way to go to bring back many of our once famous trout lakes, but it seems that this first small step signals a new approach to support our trout fisheries.


Steve Samuels


Monaro Acclimatisation Society Inc



Dear Trout strategy working group members.

As a dummy run for a possible trout strategy action we are stocking 500 tagged yearling rainbow trout from the Dutton Trout Hatchery at the “reef” in Oberon dam (which has been the subject of redfin degradation) next Monday at 11:30am  with the Member for Bathurst and Minister for Lands & Forestry the Hon.  Paul Toole.

People who ring in details of recaptured tagged fish will be sent a free little ripper oar gee lure.


Cameron Westaway,

Senior Fisheries Manager Inland 

August 2017 Burley Line (Newsletter Issue 124)

Thanks go to Jason Q for filling in for me last month.  Much appreciate his help here, especially given he’s now a very busy father.  I’ll be taking another sabbatical later this year and am looking for a volunteer to try their hand for one edition.  It is a lot of fun (especially with generous members providing material) so jump in.

A huge issue this month, especially thanks to the efforts of our members.  Take a bow folks.  Great to see that, even with the closure of stream fishing for trout, CAA can find excuses to get out and about:

  • JM provides us with extensive notes on our annual event down the coast – recall that this the event that determined the Saltwater Trophy for 2017/18.
  • Luke C and Evan tried a trout site outside our normal range.
  • ‘International traveller extraordinaire’ Lyall introduces us to the Pacific NorthWest – and aren’t we all envious!
  • Claude has extracted from some carefully selected advisors comprehensive advice on the ‘go to’ flies for this region and has kindly shared the results with us all.
  • Our local man representing our fishing concerns in so many forums, Steve Samuels, has made a number of important announcements to ‘his list’ and I’ve repeated them here for those not on it. There are some significant items of news impacting on the local fishery.

This issue will be a hard act to follow.


A Suggested List of Flies for our Region

Claude is a relatively new member, but very much engaged – witness his previous contributions to Burley Line.  In the lead up to 2017 winter, he made some enquiries about files he should be tying over winter.  He sought advice from some notable fly tiers (and one not very notable at all – ie Bill). Readers might want to consider the final assembled list and contribute comments (I’m sure Peter will add ‘iron blue dun’ to the dry list).

Howdy Bill, Evan, Lyall and Nathan,

So my original intent was to find ‘5 flies of each type’ that I could tie over winter. As I’m fast learning, there is no simple answer … especially when trying to search what some of the recommended flies look like and you get multiple versions! I may have to get that Aussie Trout flies book I’ve been trying to avoid buying. I have added some links to some of the flies (not to buy, just to see what they look like). Below is a summary of the feedback I have received.

Thanks again for your advice 😊.


  • Some kind of muddler (marabou or minnow) for the lake. Interesting, Bill looks here for “something that floats and puts out a good wake when retrieved whereas Peter has always argued that one should retrieve slowly if at all.  I suppose it all depends on what the fish think it is at the time

Most agreed with #14 or #16 for trout, but reminded Claude to consider some oversized dries to suspend nymphs and down to #18 for finicky eaters.



Don’t forget to tie a variety using weighted/unweighted, bead head or not (copper or tungsten)


Carp Flies: Evan provided some specific carp advice and added that “A lot of trout flies double as great patterns for Carp and Redfin, the following would be my ultimate Carp box in various weights, sizes and being creative with colours ie. nymphs don’t always need to be natural 😉

  • Spork size 6-10
  • Unnamed jig Fly of mine that looks like a carrot…
  • Buggers with and without hot spots, rubber legs, flash
  • trout nymphs with and without hot spots, rubber legs, flash
  • damsel nymph 
  • parachute Adams size 10
  • glo bugs


I suspect Claude was anticipating only a few fly patterns to concentrate on, but this is what happens when you ask 4 or more people for fishing advice J  I really appreciate his sharing this journey with us, also to the other contributors for their knowledge.  We’d welcome any additional thoughts from you too.

News from MAS – Improvements to Boat Launching Tantangara Dam

Message from Steve Samuels, Pres MAS

Dear Supporters


Please find the attached photo and advice from Charles Litchfield from Snowy Hydro and the work being done at Tantangara Dam launching site.  I hope those of you who fish here will enjoy the improvement.


Steve Samuels


Monaro Acclimatisation Society Inc


Hi Steve

Below is a photo of the boat launch area at Tantangara (stage 1) after work this week. You will see that it has been graded and more turning area provided and will allow people to launch while we are carrying out work at Tantangara. 

There is an area further along which we are using for the project. Once the project is finished, that area too will be available for launching (stage 2). We think this is already a reasonable improvement and should be further improved once the work is done, 


Meeting 5 of the Recreational Fishing NSW Advisory Council

Our colleague (amongst many other hats, Vice President for our region on the NSW CFA) Steve Samuels has disseminated the minutes.


The minutes from the Advisory Council has been popped up on our blog.  Some of the more interesting points are:

  • The Trout Strategy is being progressed and the working group is awaiting the appointment of a scientist – great to hear some real science is coming to this effort.
  • Recall that Jason M has spoken about the concept of a ‘social licence’ – ie public acceptance of an activity. The council is in the process of pursuing of a social licence strategy.
  • The council is seeking advice from Snowy Hydro on the potential for reopening these waters for water activities including fishing.
  • The potential issue of redfin translocation coming out of Snowy Hydro 2.0. The Chair will seek NSW Govt to raise the issue with the Commonwealth.
  • Council concerns about the Travelling Stock Reserves review will be taken to the Minister