Natives second to trout
  |  First Published: April 2014

April is almost a last gasp month for having a crack at the natives before the water temps drop below that 16-17ºC mark that seems to turn Murray cod and golden perch on and off like a switch.

Using lures on natives becomes a little bit easier as fish can be located trolling the banks again. First thing in the morning it’s worth casting the usual haunts in rocky points, drop-offs and any structure close to the bank. As the morning wears on, moving out into 3-5m and trolling with a small diver (60mm) on the side closest to the bank and a medium diver on the deep side will keep you in the hunt for cod, goldens, redfin and trout.

Nevertheless, April in Eildon is all about the trout fishing, the natives can be caught but you do have to work for them. The trout thrive on this cooler spike and are possibly more deserving of your time. It’s about quality, the chances are you will connect with a decent fish if you put in the time.

Trolling at the top end of the lake up towards Jerusalem Creek and Big River inlet is a great place to start. In the first and last hour or so of light, you can pick up fish off a flat line. During the day, lead lining and down rigging will keep your bases covered.

If you are trolling for trout it pays to have at least a lead line, and if possible a downrigger will be your best friend if you are spending time out on the water. Keeping a close eye on your sounder to locate what depth the fish are holding and adjusting your downrigger accordingly is a simple yet highly effective system. A popular method is to run a winged lure on your flat line and then have a larger style minnow on the lead line or downrigger.

There are plenty of big trout in the lake, so it’s not out of the realms of possibility to tow a lure up to 13cm in length for these larger fish. The Balista Trigger have the flashing LED in the tail and have been used to great success on the deeper lines; in the extra depth the LED is brighter and hence gives you a better chance of a strike. The trusty old Rapala in the larger sizes are always hard to pass up as well.

If you’ve been thinking about giving Eildon a try, April is a great time for it. As it kicks into May, it gets mighty cold out there on the lake.

• Our Balista range of lures feature LED technology and are designed specifically for natives. View the range at " www.balista.com.au or join us at facebook.com/balistalures

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