Fly Fishing | New South Wales | Deepwater River

Fishery 4.3 Rating

Waterway Type



Dumaresq-Macintyre catchment

Target Species

brown troutbrown trout
Murray codMurray cod
rainbow troutrainbow trout

Fly Fishing Highlights

  • Mixed fishery of Australian natives and trout
  • High population of generally smaller fish (historically large brown trout in headwaters)
  • Small waterway well suited for land based flyfishing

Target Species - Seasons

brown troutjanfebmaraprmayjunjulaugsepoctnovdec
rainbow troutjanfebmaraprmayjunjulaugsepoctnovdec
Murray codjanfebmaraprmayjunjulaugsepoctnovdec

Note: species & seasonal information is indicative at the time of publishing.
For authoritive information visit or other relevant jurisdictional authorities.

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The fishing is generally best between December and March, although cod can be caught right the way through the cooler months.

Eight to nine weights are all that are needed here. The fish average 40-60cm and require modest offerings around 3.5-5-inch flies for best results. A full floating or sink tip, weight forward fly line is ideal.

The river is reasonably featureless, so flies should be cast at anything remotely resembling structure: weed beds, boulders, rock bars, heads and tails of pools. Don’t discount the shallow water, as these fish will surprise you with just how little water they need to survive. Tea bagging and ‘dapping’ your flies in little cracks and holes in amongst boulders can be very effective.

New England cod generally aren’t fussy when it comes to flies. Anything with a bit of natural material incorporated into the design, on a 2/0 to 6/0 hook will entice a cod here. Oversized Donny Brascos or deceiver style flies are a good starting point. The same goes for surface flies: natural material and 2/0 to 6/0 hook in either a gurgler or popper style will generally get boofed.

New England headwater fisheries, such as Deepwater River, can be particularly susceptible to the negative effects of fishing due to the high populations of willing fish they support. Please ensure you treat any cod caught with the utmost respect, including practising safe fish handling, catch and release and crushing hook barbs.

Be aware of the Murray cod and trout closed seasons that impact fishing options. Check the NSW DPI website for further information.


There are a few Travelling Stock Routes (TSRs) with river access not far from town. One is found approximately 10km north of Deepwater on the New England Highway. Another is located just upstream of the highway bridge, off Bezzants Road.

Most of the river flows through private property, however, so be sure to check with the nearest house if you wish to fish beyond these TSRs. There are also a handful of farm stays in the area with river frontage, should you wish to stay for a few days.

If you want to try your luck with the trout population, head further along Bezzants Road, where you’ll find road bridges and a few TSRs with access to the stocked sections of the river.

Note: access information is indicative at the time of publishing.
For authoritive information visit or other relevant jurisdictional authorities.


Light HorsemanMurray cod#2/0 – 6/0janfebmaraprmayjunjulaugsepoctnovdec
Gurgler XOSMurray cod#2/0 – 6/0janfebmaraprmayjunjulaugsepoctnovdec
Royal Wulffbrown trout
rainbow trout
#12 – 14janfebmaraprmayjunjulaugsepoctnovdec
Red Tagbrown trout
rainbow trout
#14 – 16janfebmaraprmayjunjulaugsepoctnovdec
Klinkhammerbrown trout
rainbow trout
#14 – 18janfebmaraprmayjunjulaugsepoctnovdec
Pheasant Tail Nymphbrown trout
rainbow trout
#14 – 18janfebmaraprmayjunjulaugsepoctnovdec
Woolly Bugger - blackbrown trout
rainbow trout
#10 – 14janfebmaraprmayjunjulaugsepoctnovdec