Dam fun for trout, redfin
  |  First Published: July 2011

This month is about as cold as it gets round these parts. Temperatures at night are below or just above freezing and daytime temperatures struggle to get into double figures, which is great if you’re a redfin or a trout.

We are very fortunate to live and fish in an area that does not have an off-season as such.

The weather in Winter can make it a little tough on the water but if you dress correctly and pick your days and locations, you can always find something that wants to eat lures and bait.

Burrendong, Ben Chifley, and Carcoar dams are great places to target redfin.

Burrendong and Ben Chifley both have accommodation available for those who do not want to brave the Winter nights under canvas.

The village of Carcoar, 10 minutes from the dam, also has some places to stay.

Fishing for redfin at this time of year is not a pushover.

It’s not like the Summer hand-over-fist action that you may be used to; you generally have to work for your fish.

It’s the quality that counts. With a catch of a dozen or so, two or three fish over 35cm and one or two over 40cm, you will have had a good day.

A variety of techniques work, depending on the day.

Trolling with a spread of lures at various depths is a good way to start; this lets you view the sounder while moving around the dam.

Take note of any fish on the sounder – what depth are they? Are they close to structure? Are they in open water?

These observations will tell you where and how you need to fish for the day.

Whichever approach you take, stick with it for some time before changing. Perseverance is the key.


With the trout season in the rivers now closed, it’s all about the dams.

Lake Lyell will be popular with boating anglers; it’s a good day trip destination for keen western Sydney anglers who do quite well at the dam.

With Lyell at high levels, the downrigging opportunities have increased somewhat. This is a specialised technique used to target trout at generally greater depths.

Not all the fish are deep, though, so there are plenty of other options.

Setting up a rod on the bank with PowerBait for the afternoon while listening to the footy can be very productive.

The key with this style of bait is to use a hook small enough so that it cannot be seen outside the bait. This should also let it float up off the bottom.

Rainbow trout will take the bait while moving quickly so make sure your rod is secure.

Lake Wallace, near Wallerawang, has been very quiet.

A lot of water and fish went over the spillway during Spring and Summer so it may take some time for the fishing to improve.

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