Run-off peps up Wimmera lakes
  |  First Published: October 2008

It has been a positive start to spring. We have been getting some decent rain down this way, with some much needed run-off finding its way into lakes such as Fyans, Bellfield and Wartook. Let’s hope it keeps coming.

The Wimmera River at Horsham is now looking much healthier after a bit of a top up, mostly from storm water drains, but the whole system is still in dire need of a decent flush of water to bring it back to good health.

Lake Wartook

There have been some good catches of rainbow trout to 1.2kg, along with a few browns to 1.8kg, from Lake Wartook in the last month, but the fishing has been very inconsistent. Many small new release trout are being caught, but they must be carefully released to ensure angling action over the coming seasons.

The best trout fishing has come to those fishing mudeyes under bubble floats, with the wall and the island being good areas to try. Early in the morning until about 2pm has produced the best mudeye fishing.

Trolling with small minnow lures and Tassie Devils has also produced a few trout, along with a few small redfin.

The flyfishing has been picking up, with trout feeding along the newly flooded lake margins making for some terrific sight fishing in some very shallow water. Good flies to use for this sort of fishing include Mrs Simpson, Woolly Worms and the Weirs Roughie.

I expect the fishing to get better here over the next few weeks as the mudeye, minnows and yabbies become more active when the water warms up a bit.

Taylors Lake

Taylors Lake is still very low but the redfin fishing has been good, with bait fishers doing well using gudgeon and worms. The average redfin here is around 500g, with the odd larger fish being taken too. Anglers fishing for redfin have also caught the occasional golden perch to 1.5kg.

Carp have been caught here in large numbers and are easily caught on worms fished on the bottom. The average size carp here is only 30-40cm, but they are good fun for young children to catch. The occasional bigger carp is caught at times and can really test out light gear.

Any Murray Cod accidently hooked by anglers must be released immediately now that the cod season is closed.

The water has been very cloudy so not much lure fishing has been taking place.

Small boats can still be launched with care but most anglers have been fishing from the shore around any timbered areas.

Lake Bellfield

The fishing in Lake Bellfield has been good over the last few weeks, with good numbers of rainbow trout to 1.5kg and redfin being taken. The majority of trout are being caught on mudeyes fished under bubble floats, or by trolling small minnows and Tassie Devil lures.

The flyfishing has also been productive, with trout feeding over the newly flooded lake margins. The Mrs Simpson has been the top fly to use here while searching the shallows. The rainbow trout stockings over the last few years have been spot on and produced a terrific trout water – let’s hope it continues.

Many anglers have been taking good bags of small to medium redfin. They have been caught mostly on trolled lures, but bait fishing while drifting using gudgeon, yabbies and worms can also account for a few.

The average size redfin here is only around 400g, but they make up for size by being caught in good numbers. A few big redfin around 1kg are taken here occasionally, but they aren’t common.

The best fishing here is from small boats or canoes but only electric motors are permitted.

This lake is definitely my pick of our fishing waters for this month, and it is well worth the trip to fish in beautiful surroundings.

Lake Fyans

Over the last month some nice fish have been taken in Lake Fyans. With the fresh run of water flowing in, the redfin came on the bite and anglers started doing well trolling small minnows and Ondex spinners. The average redfin was around 500g with some to 1.8kg also caught.

Last month keen fly angler Bruce McCoughtry landed a magnificent brown trout of nearly 3kg. Bruce was using a size 12 olive and green Woolly Bugger and noted that the trout had been feeding heavily on scud. Bruce also saw another trout moving but couldn’t get a take.

It just goes to show there are still a few very large brown trout in Fyans, which is remarkable given it hasn’t been stocked for four years.

The Lake Fyans Fly In Flyfishing Weekend will be held here on October 10-12, with many flyfishing clubs travelling from far and wide to fish this water. It will be interesting to see how the fishing goes. I might see you there!

Bruce McCoughtry with a magnificent 2.9kg brown trout he caught at Lake Fyans on a Woolly Bugger wet fly.

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