The constantly dropping water level at Blowering Dam has made launching a boat quite difficult with out a 4WD and fishing off the bank has become a slippery challenge but those who have been willing to play in the mud off the bank have been rewarded with lots of small to medium redfin and the odd Murray cod and golden perch on bait.
The best baits have definitely been small to medium yabbies and a quite a few people have reverted to using big yabbies with great success. The bigger offerings are mainly used to keep the tiny redfin from stealing the bait and to target the resident natives as well as the odd really big redfin.
Spinnerbaits cast from the bank have been working well. I recently landed a 7.7kg golden perch just off the boat ramp on the Batlow side of the dam and followed it up two weeks later with a 5.9kg golden caught using the same spinnerbait in almost the same spot.
With the low water at the moment, snags are absolutely everywhere just waiting for your favourite lure to swim by so they can add it to their collection.
A lot of people are resorting to trolling spinnerbaits, which tend to ride over snags much better than most other lures. They have worked well with countless goldens caught as well as the odd cod and even the reddies have a go at them.
Small crankbaits have been working well on the troll with redfin the main catch. Stuckeys, Merlins and small StumpJumpers have been the pick of the bunch.
Lipless crankbaits and plastics have been working well cast to the edges early and late in the day. Again, redfin have been the main catch with the odd yella or trout getting in on the action.
Jigging has been the best taker of big redfin this Summer and most have been caught bobbing yabbies in around 12m to 16m. There have been regular catches of 10 or more over a kilo in a session and recently one lucky angler reportedly landed a 2.7kg and 3.6kg redfin to go with his bag of kilo-plus fish.
As the water starts to cool this month we should see trout featuring more regularly in catch reports. If we have some decent rain this Winter to get the dam rising rapidly, the more than 200,000 brown and rainbow trout have been stocked here in the past four years could produce one of the best trout seasons this dam has ever seen. Bring on the rain!
Because of the drought we should talk just about rivers for a while because almost all of the local creeks are dry or not flowing and almost all of the resident trout are dead or dying.
If we do get our weather back to its former glory it will still take years of stocking from NSW Fisheries and local community clubs and groups to get these creeks, formerly seething with life, back to anywhere near what you’d call normal.
The Tumut River, however, is still producing smallish fish regularly as well as the odd good-sized trout.
Flyfishing with big dry hopper patterns has worked well for months but more fish are being taken sub-surface at the moment. Try running a Bead Head Nymph about 60cm to 1.2m off your hopper to cover both bases.
Spinning with Tassie Devil-style lures is still the locals’ preferred technique in the high flows but let’s hope that when this article hits shelves the river will be in low flow and smaller and lighter lures will be better options.
Small plastics are my first choice when the water is low. Any style will work but best colours to use are natural trout colours and white or pink.
Small spinners like Celtas, Keltas, Rooster Tails, Bang Tails, Blue Foxes or anything similar are also worth casting, as are Rapala CD3s and CD5s in trout colours.
The Murrumbidgee River has fished well of late and a lot of natives have been caught as well as plenty of carp. Murray cod and trout cod have been caught on wood grubs, bardis and shrimp. The yellas have been taking worms, shrimp and yabbies.
Chatterbaits and spinnerbaits are still the pick of the lures for chasing cod and lipless crankbaits are your best bet if you’re after the goldens.Reads: 750