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Toolondo continues to shine
  |  First Published: March 2014



With water temperatures continuing to rise at a rapid rate the fish have been very obliging in most lakes so far, however some are now starting to suffer badly from evaporation. In the past week or so I have heard many reports of the onset of blue/green algae blooms.

TOOLONDO

While the Great Lake is starting to drop back rapidly in water level the fish here are still very willing to take a well presented bait or a lure that crosses their path.

Recently I have had great success there on the charters using the Fish Arrow plastics in the Paddle-tails, J Huddles and the 4” split tails. Mudeye under floats fished close to the tree lines have also taken their fair share of both browns and rainbows.

Browns have been up to 3.2kg but rainbows of the larger variety have now declined; the smaller ones around 1kg are still abundant.

Trolling lures has gone very quiet with most fishos quickly turning to bait or plastics as their best option.

We are finally starting to see a few redfin emerge too although nothing massive as yet.

Water levels are declining rapidly and after a meeting with the local water authority on Friday I am very disappointed that no water is planned to be put in the lake at this stage.

ROCKLANDS

Holding at approximately 35% currently, Rocklands has produced once again some great sport on the redfin. Not the large numbers we are accustomed to seeing but with a bit of patience and exploring these tasty critters can be found in the tree lines and the old river bed up around Brodies and the wall area where the fish seem to gather at this time of year.

Trout these days are a somewhat rare catch but usually if you do hook one it is going to be a big one.

StumpJumpers are the standout lure for the reddies as well as the Diawa Double Clutch and Presso Minnow. Bait wise the live yabby or gudgeon do well and at most times the carp will leave them alone. Worms will attract a bite too but try keeping them away from the carp!

LAKE FYANS

Fyans is still suffering a lot of fishing pressure but continues to produce some good redfin, rainbows and browns for the patient and experimental angler. Diawa Double Clutches once again seem to be the dominant lure as well as StumpJumper Finesse, Ecogear SX48 and vibes also have accounted for some nice fish.

Bait fishers also have done well with mudeye and scrub worms filling the bag. Flyfishers seem to flock here for ease of operation and the fact that whatever quarter the wind is in they can still find a place to lob a feather or two out with high expectations.

BELLFIELD and WARTOOK

These two lakes are still on the go with redfin of the smaller variety being the main fare in Bellfield, as well as some feisty little chinook salmon. Trout are there but very hard to tempt at times.

Wartook although in the midst of a bushfire crisis has up until now been patchy. Trout there seem to be very hot and cold but a determined angler can still nail a couple. Trolling the old faithful Tassie Devils and hardbodies early morning and leading up to dusk should snag you a fish. Mudeye, as with most inland lakes, will see you hooked up to a trout as these tasty morsels are hard to resist in a trout’s eyes! Gudgeon and yabby-tail also have produced fish in the past few weeks presented on a running sinker rig.

If venturing into these waters please be aware of the bushfire that has destroyed 55,000 hectares and be on the look out for fire vehicles.

LAKE BOLAC

Bolac is now starting to produce the great fish it is well known for, and I have seen some rainbows come out of here in the last month in excess of 3kg. Locally caught minnow are the standout bait as well as glassies.

Trolling Tassies is another great option as the lack of depth in the lake presents the Tassie in the ‘zone’. Shallow running hardbodies work well too, like the Ecogears and the Strike Pro Bass X Minnow and Sprat Stick. Natural colours with plenty of rattle in the Strike Pro stuff and lumo pink or plain white in the Tassies. Sherbet Powerbait has also taken a few from the bank.

TAYLORS LAKE

Taylors is only a short drive down the Western Highway from Horsham and has been relatively quiet. However, I know of a couple of Geelong visitors that cracked the code over the Australia Day weekend on the yellas and redfin population. They trolled and flicked towards the trees on the highway end and they managed to snag a couple of the natives up to 1.8kg and many redfin between 800g ranging up to 1.4kg. So there’s some promising news there!

Outlaw Spinnerbaits in the purple accounted for the yellas and a few of the reddies but the standout lure on the redfin was a Grizzly in red/black combination. After also fishing scrub worms on a running sinker rig on the bottom and being pounded by smaller redfin they resorted to locally caught yabbies and managed a few bigger redfin on them. Same party also took a tench that weighed in excess of 3kg on a scrubbie.

With the abundance of insect, bug and spider mudeye hatches in the Wimmera Lakes, the trout have become very selective and pretty much turn their noses up at trolled lures, so diversification is required at times. Don't be afraid to think outside the square and go for that wildcard bait or lure that you normally wouldn't drag out!

I have spoken to some very successful fishos from Stawell who have visited Toolondo and free-floated freshly hatched dragonflies on top with great rewards.

Match the hatch, experiment and persist, the rewards will come. Tight lines to all.

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