Scale down for the goldens
  |  First Published: October 2013

Just like last year, it seems as though the Murray Cod have taken absolutely no notice of their closed season, they seem to be dominating the catches of most anglers.

Please be aware that these fish should be returned to the water as soon as possible. Try to remove the lure or bait from the fish’s mouth while it’s still in the water and lift the fish out of the water only for a quick photo.

It’s also worth taking the time to revive the fish, especially if it put up a tough and long fight on gear meant for golden perch – and you shouldn’t be using anything heavier now.

This is the month for golden perch and we will start to see some decent rise in water temperature towards the end of the month to get these fish moving.

There have been a few popping up here and there and we have a seen a consistent increase in catch rates from week to week, so dust off your small hardbodies and spinnerbaits and get ready for a cracking month.

Hardbodies in the 50-60mm range are dynamite on early season goldens. My most reliable early season models are the Custom Crafted 50mm Teeny Extractor and the 50mm Australian Crafted Invader.

Small profile spinnerbaits are also great. The Mudguts brand is made with quality components in colours developed on what Riverina anglers want.


Finally the trout streams are only days away from opening.

Last year there was very little flow in the river and no late spawning rainbows, disappointing many. Fingers crossed this opening weekend will deliver something special.

As usual there will be a lot of people around Denison Campground, so be considerate of other anglers and if the fishing is hot, try some self-control and resist the urge to fish on the shoulders of the guy who was there first.

Nymphs will be the standout flies and if fished in conjunction with an egg pattern you should experience some success. Just make sure they’re bumping along the bottom.

Spring offers some great fishing on Lake Eucumbene with all fish back from the spawning run feeding heavily to replace lost condition from the run upstream.

Trout will be found close to the shore throughout the day; the trick is picking the right areas to fish.

Think shallow (1m-3m) grassy or muddy banks, because these house the most food for the fish to forage on. Areas like Buckenderra, Frying Pan, Cobrabald Bay and Rushy Plains Bay offer some of the best Spring fishing on the lake.

Soft plastics are by far the best lures to use at this time of year. When fishing them in shallow water use as light a jig head as possible and fish them right to the edge.

In recent years I have had some trophy browns almost beach themselves to take lures and flies within 1m of the shoreline.

Smelt pattern stickbaits and the black and gold T-tail minnows are so reliable that I very rarely need to change to anything different at this time of year. I just change the jig head to suit the water I’m fishing.

Woolly Buggers, Tom Jones and the ever-reliable bead-head nymphs should cover the fly options.

Fresh is best when it comes to bait and big juicy bardi grubs or scrub worms fished within 3m of shore are going to put you in a great position to hook a quality brown.

If you’re chasing numbers PowerBait will do the trick on the rainbows. Have a variety of colours on hand so you can find which one the fish prefer on the day; they can become a bit fussy.



The opening of trout streams and rivers in NSW is on October 5. Michael Kanck prospects a deep hole on a small river outside Adaminaby.


A crisp Spring morning on the Bundidgerry Canal between Narrandera and Wagga. This creek is a quality golden perch fishery throughout Spring and Summer. Small hardbodies, and compact spinnerbaits will do the trick. If you like living on the edge, lipless crankbaits are unstoppable unless they get snagged – which tends to happen regularly amid the heavy structure in local waterways.


Jason Whilesmith picked up this well-conditioned brown hopping a soft plastic along the bottom on the bank opposite Anglers Reach. Expect plenty of fish feeding close to shore this month.

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