Autumn — undoubtedly the best time of year to be in search of a mighty Murray cod or 2 around Yarrawonga/Mulwala's cod rich waters. With Lake Mulwala being the home of the Murray cod, a bit of skill mixed in with a touch of patience and an ounce of luck should see anglers in with a great chance of tangling with 1 or 2.
All fishing methods will produce cod at this time of year, with the average size being 40-70cm. For those who prefer bait fishing, you can't go past a cod's favourite snack, a tasty bardi grub. Following close behind are big juicy scrubworms, with yabbies being another great option. Chicken fillets, cheese, boiled eggs, and the list goes on for other secret baits that are always worth putting on a cod’s menu.
Lure fishos have a plethora of options when it comes to weapons of choice. Whether casting, trolling or fishing the surface, there are lures to suit every application. Trends are slowly starting to become cyclic, with a return to casting hardbodies being fashionable again. Going the other way, we're seeing more anglers slow trolling spinnerbaits, where they have traditionally been seen as a casting lure.
Undoubtedly the hottest fishing method and most fun at the current time if night-time surface fishing. Any calm evening can see as many cars and trailers lined up at ramps as in peak day periods. Poppers, paddlers and buzz baits all account for cod. If you are new to fishing the surface though, it may pay to have a few things in order before you head out. 1: A good torch or spotlight to help out any time it gets dark. 2: The ability to cast in the dark without things going pear-shaped. 3: Good knowledge of the area you intend fishing in case you have to get out of there in a hurry. 4: A selection of lures that may mix things up a bit if you aren't getting action on a certain lure. 6: Nerves of steel! If you have never experienced the hit from a surface-feeding cod, you are in for one hell of a surprise 7: Don't strike and go slow, slow, slow.
Fishing below the weir can be very rewarding if you are looking for fun. Where the lake will produce quality cod, the river below the weir produces cod in large quantities, but generally of a much smaller size. Bait fishing here will see the kids in with a great chance of tangling with fish on a regular basis. It's a great way to keep them keen, as action should be near non-stop. Again, bardi grubs are the best bait, but cheese and smaller Euro worms will see you amongst the action.
The recent Lowrance Da$h 4 Ca$h Super Series again proved a hit, with 83 teams competing. The decrease in minimum legal size limit helped add to the number of cod returned to scale for the weekend. Some 59 ‘legals’ were landed over the 3 4 hour fishing sessions, adding to the excitement and closeness within the event itself.
Looking back, there has been a multitude of cod captured and reported over the last month. To list everybody who has supplied us with reports would fill half this publication! The major highlight, once again, has been the surface action. Most who make the effort are encountering numerous strikes, with the average hookup rate being about 5 hits to 1 hookup.
A couple of other special mentions, firstly to Sparra and Jordan Urquhart. These boys have been concentrating their efforts trolling spinnerbaits in the northern part of the lake with great success. Cod measuring 80 and 79cm, along with numerous others in excess of 55cm, suggest they have things worked out pretty well. Personally, I had a very enjoyable outing on the river with Mark and Isaac Pitches. A couple of hours saw 12 Murray cod, trout cod and silver perch added to the afternoon's tally. I'm reliably informed that Isaac is now working hard on the old man for a new boat, fishing gear and the list goes on!
If you are visiting town, I urge you to call into Lake Mulwala Fish, Camp & Ski, the shop with the big green cod out the front (opposite the post office). We are your largest Murray cod-specific shop in Yarrawonga/Mulwala and specialise in all things ‘green’! For any information on the upcoming events or fishing reports, give us a hoy on (0357) 443 133.
Mark and Isaac Pitches with a double hookup of fun — a small Murray cod and a silver perch caught fishing below the weir.Reads: 441