Huon River - Upstream of Huonville Bridge
Min size: 220 mm Bag limit: 5 Method: All methods (bait, lures and flies) Season: 5/8/2023 - 28/4/2024
Huon River - Within the TWWHA
Min size: 220 mm Bag limit: 5 Method: Artificials (lures and flies) only Season: 5/8/2023 - 28/4/2024
Huon River - Downstream of Huonville Bridge
Min size: 220 mm Bag limit: 5 Method: All methods (bait, lures and flies) Season: All Year
Flowing 100 kilometres from Lake Pedder to the D'Entrecasteaux Channel in south-east Tasmania, the Huon River threads through country ranging from wilderness to cultivated orchards and pasture. In 1887 Governor Sir Robert Hamilton landed a brown trout in the Huon River that weighed 13 kg and measured over 900 mm in length. This is still the largest brown trout landed in Tasmania.
The Huon River can be accessed at Huonville, approximately 40 km south of Hobart via the A6.
Recreational Fish Management
The Huon River is managed as a wild trout fishery. The Huon River is also recognised as a recreational whitebait fishery. Separate rules and regulations apply to whitebait- check the IFS website for details.
The Huon River is best described in three general sections. The tidal reaches of the Huon River below the Huonville Bridge are wide, deep and slow moving and harbour plenty of resident and sea-run brown trout, some of which grow to trophy size, escapee Atlantic salmon and rainbow trout. There is good shore access at many location sbetween Huonville and Port Huon on both sides of the river although a boat is useful in this section.
Trophy fish tend to lurk deep during the day and for best results you need to get your lure right down amongst the drowned roots and logs - snags and break-offs have to be accepted as part of the challenge. The edges of rips and currents are also good holding places for trout.
Fishing is at it's best in spring when sea-run trout and resident brown trout are chasing whitebait that tend to swim up along the edge of the main current. These whitebait 'runs' comprise of juvenile galaxia species, Tasmanian smelt (Retropinna tasmanica) and the Tasmanian whitebait (Lovettia sealii).
Trout also like to ambush whitebait from cavities in the bank or from the calm water down current of small points and bars.
The Tasmanian whitebait often spawns on shallow reefs, while other species (galaxias and smelt) frequent the same places. Consequently you will find that some rapids and riffles are renowned springtime hot spots, just below the Huonville bridge being a classic example.
Best time of year:
September to December
The mid-reaches between Huonville and Judbury are characterised by steep, forest lined banks with deep drop-offs and the occasional rapid. We have identified the best spots to access the river which can be productive for whitebait feeders early in the season and also for lure casting and fly fishing during the summer months when the river is low.
The upper reaches of the Huon between Judbury and the Picton River at Tahune are surrounded by dense forest. The bank side vegetation is almost impenetrable and most of hte water is too fast to wade therefore the access points at the major river crossings provide the best opportunities for angling. The summer months are recommended when the flows are lower and access along the river banks easier.
Above the Picton River confluence the Huon River cascades through steep rainforest. The only convenient access is via the Huon walking track which extends into the Southwest National Park above Manuka Creek. Park fess apply. Please note bait fishing is not permitted in National Parks.
Also in the area:
Lake Skinner, Weld River, Russell River, Little Denison River, Esperance River, Lune River and the lakes in the Hartz Mountains National Park.
Recreational anglers have a responsibility to look after fisheries resources for the benefit of the environment and future generations. Do not bring live or dead fish, fish products, animals or aquatic plants into Tasmania. Do not bring any used fishing gear or any other freshwater recreational equipment that may be damp, wet or contain water into Tasmania. Check, Clean and dry your fishing equipment before entering Tasmania. Do not transfer any freshwater fish, frogs, tadpoles, invertebrates or plants between inland waters. Check your boat, trailer, waders and fishing gear for weed and other pests that should not be transferred before moving between waters. Do not use willow (which is a plant pest) as a rod support as it has the ability to propagate from a strike.
Practice minimal impact boating by accelerating gently in shallow water to avoid the underwater wash from the propeller jet stirring up silt and mud. This sediment clouds the water, disturbs sensitive weed beds, smothers aquatic plants and degrades fish habitat.
Check Your wash- if it's white it's all right If it's brown slow down. Fishing From a boat within 100 Metres of an angler fishing from the shore is prohibited unless the boat is securely moored. Do not park on or obstruct boat ramps.