Travel Talk King River Report

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    Hi all

    Just back from a brief trip to the King River at Chestnut.

    (see Google Map)

    I fished the river at easy access points from below the lake wall downstream to the bridge at Chestnut. I found the best fishing at dusk close to where I stayed near the last farm before the forest.

    Although I hammered the water with a dry fly / dropper combo I didn’t get a touch on the 16# bead head pheasant tail nymph I worked through runs, glides and tail outs.

    Most of the fish I caught or dropped rose prior to my cast and I managed to get them to bite on a small caddis emerger and 18# hot creek caddis patterns.

    Hot Creek Caddis

    Olive Caddis

    The water was a bit shallow and most of the fish I caught were about 1-1.5 meter from edges of step banks in less than knee deep water.

    Question time.
    What would be the nymph patter to match Hot Creek Caddis?

    I’m thinking that my nymph size was too big, should I have used #18 or smaller?

    What is the best time of the year to fish the King River?

    Best flies?

    and finally.

    Is it possible to get the river over Lake William Hovel in a 2WD?







    You will need 4wd to cross Evans Creek to get to King River above William Hovel.

    With numph you need one that gets to the bottom, try different dropper lengths.

    Cannot go past humble F-fly on any river as caddis imitation.



    Love the King , though am an infrequent visitor these days …so..

    I’d try a small Hares Ear as a nymph for emerging caddis ( and agree with Andrew that perhaps where you aren’t getting any touches or seeing any surface activity that you may be better targeting the bottom with a different setup)

    My recollection is of the King fishing best mid-spring to Xmas , then mid Autumn , though in the 90s the hoppers could be awesome .

    I always liked a big dry here …like an  #8 or #10 Royal Wulff …presentation rules , especially where you present the fly to .

    You need a 4wd above the dam early season and if the water is up , but it is usually ok to get over Evans Ck in a 2wd the rest of the time , and then the  track up to the first crossing , which is rutted and has a steep section but is negotiable with care , crossing the King itself is 4wd stuff  …be warned though about clearance of your vehicle and make sure you have a proper spare tyre and some rough road skills to get yourself out of a sticky situation. And look at Google maps , it isn’t too far to walk or bike from Evans Creek  to the river.

    Have fun!



    Evans creek itself is not the issue.The steep exit on the other side is definitely 4wd nowadays.The explosion in 4wd ownership has changed many tracks especially those modified with big tyres.



    Exit up the hill just after Evans is sketchy. 4WD is a must.



    Hi all

    Thanks for the great advice, searching with a F Fly makes sense. Will try and get hold of some Hares Ear nymphs and avoid wrecking my beautiful Toyota Camry Hybrid on the sketchy tracks above of the lake, I’ll bike it instead or hire a 4wd.

    I was impressed with the King River, it’s in a beautiful spot and doesn’t appear to get “flogged”.


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