Embrace the chill
  |  First Published: July 2015

The cold weather has certainly hit the Bendigo region, but anglers should not be too discouraged by the cold weather.

It is true the overall catch rates are lower during the coldest months of the year but on the upside if anglers are prepared to put the time there are some quality fish to be caught. If you do have a day or two on the water and don’t manage to catch anything don’t be too discouraged because on your next trip you may catch your PB. Anglers need to prepare for the conditions, wearing thermal clothing as well as a few extra layers of clothing, and make sure you pack a thermos to keep you going during the day.


The fishing has been slow for the majority of anglers who have been fishing Eppalock. There have been a limited number of anglers catching fish, and the anglers that have been skilful enough to located redfin have been catching some good fish. The majority of redfin have been caught in deep water. The best concentrations of redfin are being found in water deeper than 10m. The most productive method has been casting soft plastics. The most productive of these has been the Jackall Mask vibe. Small numbers of redfin are also being caught by anglers jigging ice jigs and dropshotting soft plastics.

Those anglers who are trolling hardbody lures are still catching the occasional golden perch. There are still small numbers of golden perch being caught by anglers casting and retrieving lipless crank baits. The secret for this method is to make sure you allow your lure to sink when the initial cast is made, and maintain an extremely slow retrieve all the way back to the boat. Unfortunately the golden perch fishing will only get tougher over the next few months.


At the present time water clarity is still good at most locations along this system. How long the good water clarity will last will depend on rainfall. If we only receive below average rainfall the water clarity will remain good. On the other hand if we receive a couple of significant rainfall events water clarity will deteriorate quickly. At the present time the productivity in the fishing in the Campaspe River is very low. There are only a small numbers of golden perch being caught. The numbers of Murray cod being caught has also been low. When targeting Murray cod and golden perch at this time of the year anglers should target the deepest sections of the river because this is where the best concentrations of fish will be located. As a result fish slow and deep, and be prepared to persist.

This time of the year often produces small numbers of quality redfin. Casting small hard body lures and soft plastics along the edges of weed beds and cumbungi lined banks are excellent areas to catch redfin.


The redfin fishing has been going okay at this location. Small numbers of quality redfin measuring above 40cm have been landed. Reasonable numbers of smaller redfin have also been landed. The majority of redfin have been caught in 10-15m of water. Casting blades and allowing them to sink to the bottom and slowly retrieving them has been working well. Casting soft plastics has also worked well on some days. Trolling deep diving hardbody lures and down rigging has also produced some good results. Jigging ice jigs is also another technique that can be productive on some days. At this stage the reports of trout captures has been low. Trolling winged lures and small hardbody lures are good options for targeting trout.


The fishing in the Loddon River has been slow. Donuts (no fish) has been the norm. This should not discourage anglers from still trying. Just be mindful catch rates are low and anglers should be prepared to put in the hard yards. For those anglers who are crazy enough there has still been the occasional Murray cod caught on surface lures. This technique is generally not very productive at this time of the year. However if you persist and you don’t freeze in the process you can be rewarded with the occasional quality Murray cod. Trolling deep diving hardbody lures has produced small numbers of Murray cod and golden perch in the deeper sections of the river. Trolling heavy spinnerbaits has also produced small captures of golden perch. The productivity in the redfin fishing is usually low in the Loddon River. If you do target the redfin at this location over the winter months you will not be rewarded with large numbers of redfin but the occasional quality redfin measuring up to 40cm.

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