It’s an Autumn delight!
  |  First Published: March 2012

It’s a fantastic time of year to be on the water. The Central Tablelands has just so much on offer at the moment; it’s hard to decide where to fish.

Summer was relatively cool with regular rain to keep the dams topped up. Streams and rivers maintained good flows, allowing trout to move right into the upper tributaries, in some cases to places they had not been seen for years.

This all bodes well for plenty of Autumn fishing action.

For many Windamere Dam, near Mudgee, will be very high on the list of destinations. The fishing has been sensational in recent months, and it’s been frustrating and/or thrilling at times being able to see your fish, cast to it and watch it eat or reject your offerings.

At times it has been like fishing in an aquarium.

It’s been awesome fly-fishing the shallow weedy margins from the bank, walking slowly until you spot a fish then making a cast and watching the reaction – something we have not been able to do at Windamere for years.

Small soft plastics presented on spin gear with little or no weight are also an option. I am not sure how long this bite will last; I guess while water levels remain stable and the water stays clear. So make sure you get out there and enjoy.


We are not even half-way through the cod season and already some real honkers have hit the deck. Craig Colley’s young bloke got a fish that would be hard to beat at 92cm and I think it may have been his first cod if the grapevine is correct.

I have received quite a few emails and photos about recent cod captures across the district and it seems the condition of these fish has been awesome.

Scott Mutton’s 84cm fish from Ben Chifley was a corker. It would be hard estimate the weight of such a fish but the photo suggests 20kg-plus.

Who knows what the rest of the season will bring?

I think a lot more guys are targeting cod in the district these days, refining their techniques, networking and talking about different options. It’s good to see.


I know I am going back a few months but it’s a good opportunity to let everyone know how the weather has affected the trout season this year and how it translates into a good Autumn.

Back in January I had a midday session along the wall at Thompsons Creek Dam.

In most regular seasons this would be unheard of for me, mainly because the fish would be wide and deep at that time of day.

But here I was, casting at midday sippers; they were taking beetles by the dozen straight of the top – wow!

This can only be good for the season ahead. Instead of being out wide and deep on the thermocline chasing itty-bitty wee nothings, some of these trout have been gorging themselves on high-protein beetles, gudgeon, shrimp and the like.

That can only mean one thing – big trout!


It’s not all good news, though. The weather especially early in the Summer played havoc with the bass in Lake Lyell and the fishing was very hot and cold.

Hopefully that will have changed by now.

Surface lures will still be an option this month, especially early or late in the day.

Soft plastics cast and retrieved along break lines and edges where fish have been spotted on the sounder will be a better option during the day.

Trolling lures of 60mm or 70mm or even smaller that get to the depth of the fish shown on the sounder is also a good tactic.

Regular captures of trout and bass in the same boat using the same technique is becoming common at this time of year at Lyell.

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