The opening of the new trout season has finally arrived for anglers in Ballarat and the surrounding district.
The Ballarat anglers have some exciting times ahead of us with all our waters full and full of fish.
Wendouree is the heart and soul of Ballarat and this will be our first trout opening for nearly 10 years. The lake looks magnificent full of water and the characteristic weed beds are still there.
Over the last year Fisheries have released thousands of rainbow and brown trout into the lake. These fish have grown incredibly well and some are up around the 2lb size. At the end of August a further 10,000 yearling rainbow trout were also released into the lake.
I mentioned last month has seen an increase in angler activity at Burrumbeet and reports coming in of trout being caught. Peter Voterakis had a trip out there recently to try out a new soft plastic rod and reel combo. He found success straight away with a magnificently conditioned rainbow trout around the 3lb mark, which he released to fight another day.
Craig and James Hazendonk a couple of keen Ballarat fishos have been trolling pink Tassie Devil lures catching rainbow trout to 3lb too. I have also heard a couple of other reports of trout up to 5lb so it’s well worth the effort.
The redfin are on fire at the moment in Fyans. Shane Jeffries has been catching heaps up to the 4lb by casting hardbodied lures and soft plastics out in the open water of the lake. Shane said the key to his success was to use a very slow retrieve and try all different patterns and sizes up to 110mm long.
Dave Turner has also been up to Lake Fyans chasing the redfin with soft plastics, and has been catching plenty in varying sizes up to the 4lb. The local anglers told him they have caught the redfin up to 5lb, so there is plenty of action if you like to catch redfin.
As we move into the spring months we should see the trout start to come on the bite, as a bit of surface insect activity will see them up and about.
The fishing is hot to trot at the moment, which Brian Rivett can certainly attest to, after recently spending a week trout fishing at Purrumbete. He caught plenty of rainbow and brown trout up to 4lb suspending mud eyes under bubble floats. Brian fished all around the lake generally fishing along the weed beds.
Ross Goyne and Geoff Cramer have been catching plenty of redfin on local minnows and using Baltic Bobbers in around 10m of water. The secret to their success was to use a fish finder to find a school of redfin, then drop baits down and catch as many as they could until the school moves away. But the fish are so prolific, even when they moved away the pair didn’t have to wait long for another school to come along. Just remember there is a bag limit of 30 fish per angler per day.
Luke Barby and Mick McKay have been catching plenty of rainbow and brown trout flyfishing out of the boat in ‘the Swamp’ area just in front of the caravan park. They have been using sinking fly lines and Woolly Bugger type fly patterns.
Cain Curran has also been producing plenty of redfin. Steve and Nathan Angee have been catching redfin from the shore on worms fished on a running sinker rig. The smaller redfin are plentiful but in amongst them there are some excellent size specimens.
I have been fly fishing here and the water looks magnificent, I haven’t seen it look so good for a long time.
As the weather warms up the chironomids will hatch around the reservoirs margins and the trout will be in very shallow water chasing these tiny insects. The reservoir has been heavily stocked with brown and rainbow trout, and fish up to 3lb have been caught recently.
This Lake Fyans redfin was taken by Shane Jeffries on soft plastics.
Courtesy Ross GoyneReads: 1958