Brumbys Creek, Cressy: Gateway to Trout Fishing Paradise
A Little About Cressy
Cressy became an official township in 1848, and today is a small rural town about 36 kilometres from Launceston, and situated below the Great Western Tiers in the region known as Norfolk Plains. This area was developed around 1855 by the New South Wales and Van Diemen’s Land Establishment, which later became known as The Cressy Establishment, a company formed in England to run large agricultural farms and grazing enterprises. The company owned a significant portion of the Norfolk Plains area including land from the Lake River to the Liffey River. Prior to the foundation of Cressy in 1855, the area was the centre of a large wheat-growing region.
Today wool growing and crops such as poppies and vegetables add to the rural economy, and only a little wheat is grown. Cressy is still a significant agricultural centre, but today is probably better known as the ‘Gateway to Trout Fishing Paradise’ in the streams that flow across the Norfolk Plains from the lakes in the central highlands. In the mid 2000s Cressy branded itself as Tasmania’s Trout Capital, a branding so well deserved. Cressy is Tasmania’s only ‘troutified’ township and is home to the well-known Tasmanian Trout Expo which is held annually. A drive through the township of Cressy will have you spotting trout, both as street signs and amazing copper sculptures near the town amenities block.
Brumbys Creek: Throw in a Line
Brumbys Creek is managed as a wild brown trout fishery. Serious trout fishermen have found their way to Brumbys Creek for many years. In the year 1900, two thousand sea trout were liberated into the waters of Brumbys Creek. In 1932 ten thousand Rainbow Trout fry were released in Brumbys Creek, but this species failed to establish. Brumbys Creek is now regularly stocked with Brown Trout, but the occasional Rainbow Trout can still be caught, though these are thought to be emigrants from the Great Lake.
Brumbys Creek as it is seen today is the result of works associated with the Poatina Power Development. Three low profile weirs were constructed on Brumbys Creek back in the early 1960s, designed to buffer the large flows of water flooding through which resulted from the release of water from the nearby Poatina Power Station. Large fluctuations of water level occur over short periods depending on release of water for power generation. The weirs are extremely popular throughout the trout fishing season. During periods of high flow the turbulent water at the base of the weirs are good areas to target. Hydro Tasmania manages Brumbys Creek in collaboration with the Inland Fisheries Service, Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment and Water and Anglers Alliance Tasmania.
Tasmanian Trout Expo
Cressy is home to the annual Tasmanian Trout Expo, a weekend of opportunity for all fishermen, from the novice to the expert. This weekend is usually held around September each year, and attracts thousands of people. A tagged wild trout is released into Brumbys Creek, creating an opportunity for the fisherman who is lucky enough to catch it to win a substantial cash prize, the amount in 2012 was $10,000! Many other great prizes can be won in the fishing competitions held. Fishermen from the world over can be seen lining the banks of Brumbys Creek on the Expo weekend. The weekend also provides many stalls and exhibitors, one can seek out a bargain, taste some great food or learn fishing tips from some of our best anglers and fly fishermen.
Fishing Regulations Applicable to Brumbys Creek
A current Inland Fisheries angling licence, (available at all Service Tasmania shops or online at the Inland Fisheries Service website), is needed to fish in Brumbys Creek. The angling season is from the first Saturday in August to the Sunday nearest 30 April. Minimum size limit of trout caught must be 220mm. A bag limit of 12 fish per day is applied.
Weir 1 ~ provides magical views across the Norfolk Plains region to The Great Western Tiers. This weir is most popular for fly-fishing, where the fly-fisherman has access to an open shoreline with weedy margins, where trout can be found searching for food amongst the weed early in the season, then as the weather warms up many aquatic insects provide food for the trout as they hatch. Permitted fishing methods at Weir 1 are fly-fishing and artificial lure fishing only.
Weir 2 and 3 ~ permitted fishing methods are fly-fishing, artificial lure fishing and live bait fishing, with Weir No. 3 being preferred by lure fishermen, as the lower section of the weir is more open and conducive to this method.
All photos strictly ©Carol Haberle, H&H Photography. You can follow Carol on Facebook at Haberle Photo Cards. Carol writes feature articles for this website about all things Tasmanian. If you’d like Carol to visit you, please contact Think Tasmania.
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