How to catch a Brown Trout?

Brown Trout is a medium-sized freshwater species that is well known for its sporting capabilities. Often identified by their largemouth that houses a set of sharp teeth, brown to silverish tan in colour and small to medium size black and red spots throughout its body.

Brown Trout native to Europe and Western Asia was first introduced into Australia in 1864. These guys prefer cooler climates and often found throughout the Southern parts of Australia. Predominantly located in Tasmanian and Victorian lakes, rivers, and streams.

Similarly grouped with other introduced Salmonid species including Rainbow Trout, Brook Trout, Chinook Salmon, and Atlantic Salmon. Browns are often stocked regularly into Victorian waterways by local fisheries for their fishing opportunities.



Browns are distributed throughout Victorian freshwater systems but are well known in central and southwestern Victoria. Some popular spots include Lake Bullen Merri, Hopkins river, Lake Fyans, and Tullaroop reservoir.

Browns like Rainbow Trout prefer clean, clear and well-oxygenated waters and is found in fast-moving currents amongst structure including banks, fallen trees, and boulders.


The best time of the day and year

Some of the best Brown Trout fishing is done during the cooler months of the year at either dawn or dusk as they are predominately more active. However, Browns can also be caught throughout the day and at night.

As the weather warms up Brown Trout are found in rivers and streams at higher altitudes and forests. These areas are well-oxygenated, cooler and provide lots of cover.


What set-up should I use for Brown Trout?

A lightly weighted spinning rod and reel set-up are best for Brown Trout and a graphite rod rated at 2-4 kg in the range of 6 – 7 foot will work well. Pair this up with a 1000 – 2500 size reel and spool up with either Braid, monofilament or Fluorocarbon fishing line as your main line.

Both lures and baits can be used when targeting Brown Trout. However, if using lures I recommend using braid as your mainline and pair this up with a fluorocarbon leader either same break strength or a little stronger. This is because you want the extra sensitivity that a monofilament line won’t provide.



Various baits can be used for Brown Trout fishing and the best baits are found to be inhabiting the waters your fishing in. The key to bait fishing is using live baits including mudeyes, grubs, srubworms, minnows, and grasshoppers.

The rig should be kept simple and depending on the water column you’re targeting either a float rig or a running sinker rig will work well. The hook will entirely depend on the size of the bait your using but a good starting point is to use a long shank hook or circle hook.



Various lures can be used including soft plastics and hard bodies that imitate natural baits similar to grubs, minnows, and insects.

Well on the other hand not so natural lures will also get attention including metal spoons and spinners which create a lot of vibrations and erratic movements. Any curious Brown Trout swimming along will be tempted to have a strike.

I find lure fishing to be the most efficient as you can actively cover more water and work different retrieval techniques. From fast and erratic stops to imitate injured baitfish or slow retrieves bouncing on the bottom to imitate insects or worms.

Fly fishing is another alternative to catch Brown Trout and it’s an art form in itself. Fly fishing is best done with a fly fishing rod/reel set-up and with fly lures. I highly advise talking to your local tackle shop in regards to fly fishing as this method requires a different skill set.



Size and catch limits for Brown Trout

Brown Trout are a seasonal species and do have closed and open seasons. It’s best to check your local regulations in terms of catch limits and sizes. These requirements may vary from location to location and it’s highly advisable to check the restrictions in the area you’re fishing in beforehand.

As always practice safe fishing methods and if catching and releasing fish do so with the correct technique to ensure it has the highest rate of survival.

Information and image referenced from VFA ‘Victorian Fisheries authority’

12 thoughts to “How to catch a Brown Trout?”

  1. This article taught me a lot about fishing in general. As well as learning about the Brown Trout. It is an amazing looking fish. Seeing how popular it is in Australia, is it served on the menu in restaurants in the areas of Victoria and Tasmania? 

    Great information on how to prepare and catch this fish. I like that this fish is regulated so that fishing times are set after the breeding and nurturing period is over. i am not into fishing. But if I was I would catch and then release the fish back into the water. Thanks for emphasizing that proper techniques must be used to ensure a high survival rate. This brings up the question. If a person doesn’t do that properly, wouldn’t it be better if they didn’t release the fish but kept if for a meal? 


    1. Hi Edwin,

      Thanks for leaving a comment. These fish are a popular species that make great table fish. To answer your question, absolutely Brown Trout can be ordered in restaurants in both Victoria and Tasmania. 

      Also, of course, that’s our intention to catch a fish so we can eat. However, sometimes you end up catching undersized fish and it’s best to release these as safely as possible to let it grow until next time.



  2. Brown trout are really beautiful fish and I know it can be tough to catch them sometimes. Again I prefer the spinners when it comes to river and lake fishing, though the streamer flies might be something I’d consider as well with a spinning reel. Thanks for another great post on fishing. I’m looking forward to seeing anything on walleye as they are one of my favorite fish to eat!

    1. Hi Pentrental,

      As always thanks for taking the time and leaving some feedback. I might consider writing about fish native to other countries such as Walleye in the future. But for now I’ll be writing about fishing in Victoria, Australia 🙂

  3. Hi,

    Thanks for such a great article about brown trout. When I started to read this article it starts my mouth-watering. Trout is one of my favourite fish. It’s tested amazing. I eat this fish a lot but never heard trouts incredible history. Today after reading your article I have learned a lot about trout. My father in law has some passion for fishing, so I am going to pass all of these tips for fishing to him. I am sure he gonna love this.

    1. Hi Nazmun,

      Trout are a great tasting fish and in particular Brown Trout. As always I’d love for you to share this post 🙂

      Much appreciated,


  4. This is a good post. I haven’t heard of the brown trout but I’m sure Kevin has. He’s really a fish and fishing enthusiast and I have the feeling he’ll love to read this post seeing that he has interests in fishes. I feel a lot of research has gone into making this post and I’ll definitely share it with my friends. Best regards. 

  5. This article encouraged me a great deal about angling by and large. Just as finding out about the Brown Trout. I like the manner in which you clarified the guide on the most proficient method to get ready it and furthermore a major gratitude to you for featuring the essential system to guarantee survival rate. I think I have to visit the southern piece of Australia to have the taste. You’re working superbly. Magnificent post.

    1. Hi Crownwole,

      Thanks for taking the time from your blog and leaving a comment. Much appreciated and Brown Trout are a great tasting fish. If you ever happen to visit Australia and in particular Victoria. I hope you could use my site as an reference.

      All the best,


  6. I like the fishing diagram and the description of each segment for catching a brown trout. Any layman will learn to fish from this site.

    I am not a fishing person although I have tried a few times without much success.

    The location, timing of fishing, and the setup inspire me. 

    It is a delicious fish. I have tried at a restaurant during my visit to the yellow stone park in Montana. 

    I am curious about the difference between the brown trout and the black-gray trout.

    1. Hi Anusuya, 

      Thanks for taking the time and leaving a comment on my post. To be honest I’m not quite sure what a Black-Gray Trout is? Where about are these type of Trout found?

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