Harty’s Plains and Kindee

Harty’s Plains and Kindee

Target Fish: Mullet, Herring and Bass

All the flies listed below target the herring, however they are still very effective on bass – especially if fished around the fringes and in and under cover – especially in the deeper water.

Sinking Flies

Carp Fly – Backstabber Hybrid

This Carp fly is a real killer for Bass in size 4, Herring in size 8 and 10 and Carp in size 4. We should really work on these flies for all 3 fish – especially when the fish are deep.

Alternative for materials

  • The eyes can be brass bead chain in small sizes – I got a length of this from the Mitre 10 shop in Port industrial area.
  • The legs can be silly legs or just the rubber from the inside of an Occy Strap.
  • Any dubbing is good but the mohair in Olive is simple and effective, ie. UNI-Mohair 2X in Olive.


Bead Headed Carp Fly – size 10 for herring
Dog Nobbler

Small pieces of slit shot can be glued on as a head and then painted with an eye.


Olive Woolly Bugger

One of the very best trout flies ever – size 8 and 10 for herring and trout.

Floating Flies

Red Tag
JOS Gurgler
JOS Gurgler


The Red Tag should be fished with plenty of floatant to ensure it stay on the surface or just in the surface film – these can be fished with an unweighted nymph tied with a very light line – 4lb – to the bend of the hook. These are most effective in moving water in the deeper parts of the river, using a floating line. 

The JOS gurgler can be fished around the fringes and where there are fishing moving breaking the surface or just under – again using a floating line.

Weighted nymphs are better fished with a floating line where the water is moving a little faster.

The Carp Fly and its alternatives can be fished using floating and intermediate lines – the intermediate line is more effective in deeper and faster moving water.


Remove Slack from the Fly Line before the Cast

Casting in the saltwater and the fresh it is important to minimise the disturbance of the line on the water when starting to recast – this is even more critical in the salt, as we use heavier lines and larger flies – so it is even easier to spook the fish.

There are 2 methods to do this:

  1. Point and Cast – Point the rod tip at the fly – slowly pull the line until the slack is removed – then and only then should you lift the rod and attempt the back cast – lift the rod slowly at first and then gentle accelerate into the back cast.
  2. Use the Roll to Start – If there is line on the water and you need to recast quickly – ie at a fish – use the roll cast, instead of the first back cast, to lift the line from the water. Again start moving the line slowly at the start lift the rod to the side and back, as you would for a roll cast to remove the slack – then go into your normal over head cast. The roll cast used in this situation is great to get a sinking or intermediate line to the surface so you can complete a normal over head cast.

So there are two benefits from removing the slack from the line before you attempt a cast – with no slack in the line the rod loads early so you can recast quickly with a minimum of false casts and the disturbance on the water has been reduced and will not scare the fish.

Cast to Use – Reach Mend

As most of the fishing at Harty’s Plain is across the flow of the river – the reach mend is critical to help eliminate drag on the fly – fish hate drag, they think it is unnatural. The flies that catch fish float naturally down the river. Check out Carl McNeil’s Reach Mend on YouTube.

The video below is part of Carl McNeil’s DVD “Casts that Catch Fish”.

Peter Glasson is a Certified Casting Instructor and was Club Captain of the Hastings Fly Fishers Inc fly fishing Club in 2014 - 15. Now living in Casuarina, in north-eastern New South Wales, he remains a Club member.