Toolondo to make a comeback
  |  First Published: December 2011

Great news for trout and redfin anglers was the recent water releases into Toolondo reservoir which should see the lake around half full.

Even better news is the lake has just been restocked with 5000 rainbows and 20,000 brown trout. I am sure that with the amount of feed in here and the great water quality we will see these fish grow very fast and to the trophy sizes that this lake was renowned for.

Toolondo has always been my favourite trout and redfin water; the size of the fish that come out of here was incredible. Any water that can regularly produce trout to 4.5kg and redfin to 3kg is a special lake in my book. What is even better about Toolondo is it offers equally great fishing whether you are into fly, bait or lure. Looks like some good times are a coming.

Wimmera river

The river has been fishing very well with great reports coming from most areas. I have been mostly fishing around the Horsham weir and riverside areas and taking yellowbelly, redfin, carp, catfish and a few silver perch on baits such as yabbies, worms and peeled yabby tail.

On the really hot days the better fishing has come in the evenings and after dark. A few Murray cod and extra larger yellowbelly have also been taken in the section below the Horsham Weir on lures and spinnerbaits.

Natimuk Lake

The rainbow trout are doing very well here and are now up to 700g. Bait fishing with worms, mudeye or Powerbait is working well, as is lure fishing. I have found the flyfishing great here lately in the evenings and after dark with the trout coming in very close to the shoreline to feed on mudeye and water beetles. In fact I think flyfishing will easily out-fish any other form of fishing here most days, it’s like this lake was designed for the fly angler!

My favourite flies here at the moment include the Mrs Simpson, nymphs, Tom Jones and Weirs Roughy. A few redfin are also showing up in catches here now too.

Lake Bolac

I have been having an absolute blast fishing here for big rainbow trout up to 4kg but with the warmer weather and higher water temperatures the trout fishing has slowed down considerably here. The better fishing this time of year is now in the evenings and right through the night. I have also caught a number of eels here after dark too.

When the big rainbows first came on the bite here I was doing well trolling lures such as Tassie Devils and Rapala minnows but now the lure fishing seems to have slowed right down. My last few trips I have been doing ok bait fishing with Powerbait on a running sinker rig or whitebait fished under a bubble float or unweighted but it has been slow going.

With rainbows the sizes these fish are going though, I really don’t mind putting in the extra time and effort now required to catch them!

Rocklands reservoir

Good numbers of redfin from 300g-1.8kg are being taken here, mostly on trolled diving lures but bait fishing with worms and yabbies from the shore is also working well. A few brown and rainbow trout have also been taken. The mornings have been fishing best.

Carp of all sizes have been very active here in the shallows and local fly anglers Luke Davis and Shaun Bloomfield have been catching many carp to 2kg on a fly they tie themselves called the carp slayer. Other flies that are working include Mrs Simpsons and Woolly Worms.

Lake Fyans

This great little lake has continued to turn on some excellent trout and redfin fishing but with the onset of hot weather the best fishing has been in the mornings, evenings and after dark.

Brown and rainbow trout averaging around 1kg have been easily caught on mudeye fished under bubble floats and by flyfishing with wets such as Mrs Simpson, Craigs Nighttime and brown nymphs. The best flyfishing has come to those trying after dark, especially when a mudeye hatch is on which is pretty common here this time of year. The occasional larger trout to 3kg has also been taken lately.

Good numbers of redfin around 300-900g are being taken mostly on small yabbies, worms and gudgeon fished around the timber. Ice jigs and soft plastics have also been working well. A number of tench up to 2kg have also been caught here lately, mostly by bait anglers targeting redfin with yabbies and worms.

Lake Lonsdale

I have been fishing here a lot lately and the redfin fishing in the mornings has been good for fish up to the 1.2kg mark but averaging around 500g or so. I have been having most of my success here by simply trolling lures such as Stumpjumpers, Tilsans and Rapala minnows.

It is simply a matter of working the water until you find a good patch of fish. On the days that the lure fishing is slow, try drifting with small yabbies, worms or gudgeon a paternoster rig. This technique has been producing some very nice bags of redfin here.

The occasional very large rainbow trout to 4.5kg has also been taken here recently by a few extra lucky redfin anglers. I’m not sure where these trout came from but they more than likely made their way into the lake when the floods were on.

I have found the yabbying to be a bit slow here during the day but after dark it has been pretty good. As we get some hotter days the daytime yabbying should get much better here.

Taylors Lake

The warmer weather has really turned the fish on here with good numbers of redfin being taken up to 800g along with a few nice yellowbelly and many carp. Bait fishing with worms, yabbies and gudgeon has been working well in the timbered areas whether you are land-based or in a boat. I haven’t heard of any recent Murray cod captures but there are plenty of cod in here of all sizes, it’s just that they are seldom fished for. Most big cod are caught here by accident by anglers fishing with light gear for the redfin and yellowbelly.

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