In this cold corner of Victoria it is all about fishing for trout in lakes during August. The streams are still closed to trout fishing and the water is pretty much too cold for Murray cod, golden perch and redfin. Die hard anglers will still catch a few of these species, but they will need to work very hard for them and be very patient.
Lake Dartmouth is where all the anglers head in August. As I write this report the annual Dart Cup has just finished with some very good results. Most people caught trout with plenty of brown and rainbow trout being landed.
Lake Dartmouth is littered with squillions of trout that are very easy to catch during winter, especially if you are trolling from a boat. The best technique is to troll winged lures like Tassie Devils. My mate Sandy Hector, who I fish with at Lake Dartmouth every winter, swears by the pink panther coloured Tassie Devil, and to be honest, so do I.
One of the best things you can do to any winged lure is to take the treble hooks off, and take the wire brace out. It's far better to just thread your line straight through the middle of the lure and tie it to a single hook. You may need a small bead above the hook to stop the hook from sliding up into the lure.
If you are a bit of a control freak, and like to finely tune just about everything you do, you can even get 2 single hooks known as Siwash hooks and rig them up. The Siwash hooks are single hooks similar to bait hooks, but have a bigger eye. You thread two of them onto a small split facing each other. This technique is dynamite when trolling for trout as it greatly improves your hook-up rate.
Alternatively, you can employ the Robbie Alexander technique. Stick with the treble hooks and the wire brace, lose more fish and just be thankful that you are in such beautiful surroundings away from crowded cities and cranky managers [Sounds like the Boothy method too – Ed].
Khancoban Pondage will also be well worth a visit during October where the brown trout should be willingly on the chew. As I have stated several times before, Khancoban Pondage is not as reliable as Dartmouth and can in fact be very hit and miss with the trout fishing. The upside though is that there are some very large trout in there to be caught. Over the years, trout over 10lb have been caught in Khancoban Pondage with more regularity than you’d imagine. So take the risk of catching nothing, with a chance of catching something huge!
Lake Hume has been a bit of a Mecca for large trout over the last few years. Trout are a very fast growing fish species, provided there is enough food around for them to eat. In Lake Hume there are literally billions of tiny redfin that the trout can pig out on. During winter these tiny redfin tend to swim around much more slowly in the cold water, making them easy pickings for the hungry, fast moving trout. Most anglers targeting trout in Lake Hume tend to employ one of two very successful techniques: Trolling winged lures such as Tassie Devils, and trolling short fat redfin pattern hardbody lures. The more the lure looks like a small redfin the better it will most likely work. Trout are a fussy fish and can be quite selective. If the lure matches the hatch, so to speak, you may be in with a chance of catching a trophy brown trout. The day before writing this report I saw photos of a 10lb trout caught in Lake Hume and I can tell you that got the adrenaline pumping.
Don't forget the family friendly waterways which were stocked in June. The two main ones in this area are Alans Flat waterhole and Upper Sandy Creek dam. Both of these small lakes have recently been stocked with yearling rainbow trout for the July school holidays. There should still be a few trout getting around in both lakes throughout August which will provide another angling opportunity, especially for the kids.Reads: 976