Unbelievable blue water
  |  First Published: December 2010

Lake Monduran is still struggling to produce consistent fishing but with the waters warming over the months ahead we should see a vast improvement.

On concurrent warm days the fish will start to bite on lures again but we really need some consistency in the temperature. With the lake being in such a temperate area and being one of the most southern impoundments, barramundi don’t seem to fish as well as they do in some of the northern dams.

Native barramundi usually come as far south as Maryborough and some of the southern dams including Monduran have regular kill offs during the colder winters. This might be part of the reason the Lake Monduran fish are more difficult to catch.

Lake Awoonga is a good example of how regular stocking can improve a fishery. The lake has it’s own hatchery and regular stocking has made this into a really consistent fishery, in fact we fished most of the winter at Awoonga and caught fish most trips.

The regular stocking has given the dam plenty of the different size fish that are caught all throughout the year.

Lake Monduran has relied on SIPS funding and hasn’t had the resources that Lake Awoonga has to put fish into the dam. This coupled with an increase of water from 20% to more than 80% has put a lot of water between the fish.

The fishing this time last year was in water around the 20% mark, which created great shallow habitat for the fish and incredible fishing. This year at 80% plus the fishing is tough.

The lure of choice when it has been tough is the good old hardbody, with the Rapala suspending shad and the Saruna range of suspending lures both doing well at the moment.

The soft plastic seems to be dominated by the Shimano Slick Rig in the Pro range. The older black and gold colour is popular, plus any of the new colours will also work well. The Storm lures are good too with some of the cheaper ones you see in the bargain bins at tackle stores good options.

The Berkley mullet is a great deep water lure and it swims on the drop which is great for hopping across the bottom. Thanks to Jason Ehrlich and Dan Grech the Transam lure made by Jackall have made a big impact and are now back in stores across the country. With beefed up hooks, these lures will hop and swim well and will fool many a barra.

The months ahead look very promising and will suit trolling anglers as the main basin usually comes into play in mid November through to December.

Trolling for barra will pick up as water temperatures increase and hopefully we will see more consistent catches. Barra fishing is best with a guide so if you’re interested give me a call on 0427590995.


On the flipside, the fishing has been unbelievable off the coast. Large schools of bait have moved in onto the spit at Fraser Island and big sailfish have been harassing these schools. While they have been chasing lures, the sails have been extremely hard to hook.

We discovered that a lot of the sailfish were down deep in the water column under the bait and weren’t interested in the surface activity that the lures would create, so we jigged live baits and found the sails would come up and hit the lures on the riggers while the boat was stalled. We changed over to skipping garfish rigs and then went to live baits on the riggers.

This proved to be the right formula. We put live baits about three boat lengths out, and found we could entice the bait on to the jigs. The rising flash of the bait on the jig plus suspending the jig under the boat brought the sailfish up to the live baits. Circle hooks were the final requirement in this perfect hook up.

Out wider the blue and black marlin have been hanging around the 200m mark wide off the 13 mile crossing – we hooked up to four in the first two hours of trolling.

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