Blue Rock is on the map
  |  First Published: October 2015

For many years Blue Rock Lake has been a great spot for local anglers. Recently we’ve been able to enjoy the spoils of the successful bass stocking program and predominantly keep it all to ours local selves. Now that is all about to change with a 12 month trial allowing boats and engines of all sizes to use the lake providing boaters stick to the speed limits and exclusion zones.

Some have criticised this program but I believe this move opens the lake up to more anglers. More anglers attract more funding, more stocking programs, and better facilities. We’ve been assured that there’ll be a lot more focus on enforcing these new regulations so that small boats, kayakers, small sail vessels and swimmers can still enjoy the lake.

As of Wednesday the 26th of August, a dozen large bass were released to great fanfare at the announcement of the new lake regulations, with each fish carrying a tag with a prize money bounty on its head to encourage more anglers to the lake. The breakdown of the new rules include an exclusion zone at the swimming area (160m x 60m) adjacent to the toilet block at the Old Tanjil Road Recreational Area, and within 200m of the dam wall at the southern end of the lake. Speed restrictions include a 5knot zone up the Tanjil Arm and within 50m of the shoreline across the whole lake and 15knots across all other waters.

Recent fishing has seen Blue Rock Lake shake off the terrible nickname of ‘Lake Disappointment,’ with increasing numbers of anglers reporting great fishing conditions and results. This is a credit to the successful bass and trout stocking program by Fisheries Victoria.

Bass fishing on Blue Rock is starting to heat up alongside the temperature gauge. Bass continue to be caught over the winter months, however because the fish settle deep and are less active live bait has been the best way to target them. As the water warms up the fish will come to the surface to chase baitfish, shrimp, frogs, and to snatch insects off the surface. This is when lure fishing kicks off! There are a plethora of lures on the market and you would be well advised to consult some of the local tackle stores in the Gippsland region before settling on something to throw.

The rivers of West and South Gippsland are flowing well with late season rains and snow melt from Mt Baw Baw. The trout action in streams will intensify over the next few months. As the weather continues to warm up, insects will hatch, pushing the trout into a feeding frenzy. Closer to Melbourne the Lang Lang, Bunyip, and Tarago Rivers will all be worth a try over the coming months and if you are keen to explore further, the Latrobe, Loch, and Toorongo Rivers also provide prime fishing locations.

Happy fishing!

• Please remember the blackfish season is still closed until the 31st of December 2015.

Feel free to send me a report or photo - particularly if you have any success stories from the opening of the trout season or if you’re lucky enough to catch a big tagged bass in Blue Rock. Please email me any questions.

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