Saturation point
  |  First Published: October 2010

Late Winter and early Spring brought some great rains right across the district and gullies, creeks and rivers all flowed well.

It was great to walk in paddocks that were saturated and hear the squelch of water and mud; I reckon gumboot sales would have gone through the roof recently.

With the ground as wet as it is, any more rain should produce runoff straight away.

This is great for our dams, whose levels will continue to rise. Burrendong went from 14% to more than 60% in a matter of weeks, pushing water over new ground, ground that has grass, shrubs and saplings.

As it floods, fish move in to feast on drowned worms, grubs, shrimp and yabbies.

Clear water can be rare in some waterways at the moment and murky water can be a problem.

By concentrating your efforts at the lower end of impoundments early in the piece, you can avoid the dirty water as it pushes down the lakes.

Then as it works its way down the impoundment, you can push back up into the upper reaches as it begins to clear up there.


My tackle box is somewhat devoid of bright fluoro-coloured lures because we have had very little in the way of dirty water runoff until now.

So it might be off to the tackle shop for me.

Rattles and scent in and on lures are also great options in dirty water.

Bait, of course, is possibly the best dirty water option; freshwater fish have a great sense of smell and easily pick up the aroma of worms and grubs from quite a distance away.

Stained water also provides visual protection from predators, which encourages the fish into the shallows.

Keep this in mind while bait fishing and don’t throw out too far.

Boating after such an influx of water should be taken with great care. Logs and debris will float for weeks afterwards and hitting a waterlogged piece of timber floating just on or under the surface at speed would not be good. Take care.


Lake Windamere has always been a favourite destination for me during October.

In the hope that the water will continue to fill it much higher than it has in the past few years, I foresee a new dam.

The golden perch fishing there is something special. Quite a few guys who have fished freshwater all over the country and overseas have told me that on its day, Windamere’s fishing is world class.

Sure, there are many fish that pull harder but for me and many others, it’s the place to be in Spring.

The variety of techniques that can be used to catch golden perch in Windamere is one of its greatest assets.

It must be a tackle shop owner’s dream when somebody comes into the shop and says, “I’m off to Windamere, old mate, can you stock me up with some lures?”

Where do you start? The techniques used there have evolved over the years and will continue to do so.

Lures from 45mm to 70mm that can be fished in 2m to 5m of water, casting or trolling, will catch you plenty of fish.

Some favourite techniques include casting lipless crankbaits, trolling hardbodies, ice jigging, casting skirted jigs, casting soft plastics, casting and jigging blades. The list goes on.

That’s without fly-fishing and bait fishing. You can see why it’s such a great place to fish.

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