Crunch time for cod
  |  First Published: December 2015

What a good couple of months we have had in the area. Hopefully this will continue throughout December and the rest of summer.

December for any freshwater fisher means Murray cod! I, along with many others, have been patiently waiting for the long three months, but come 1 December the wait will finally be over. I’m anticipating that this summer could be a cracker on the Murray cod scene.

Low river levels usually mean better cod fishing in my opinion. Mainly because the upland rivers we fish in the area (Kiewa, Mitta and upper Murray) are shallower than the lower Murray. This means when the river is high the water is moving a lot faster, therefore harder to fish and harder to keep the lure in the fish’s face for longer.

You will still catch fish when the rivers are high, I just find it a lot easier when the rivers are lower than normal. That shouldn’t be a problem this year with the lack of rain we have received all spring.

The best lures to use by a country mile would be a spinnerbait of some description. There are literally hundreds of brands of spinnerbaits on the market these days, and it can be a bit daunting to know which one to use, but I’m sure they all catch fish.

I like to stick to the more well-known brands like Bassman or Gangsta, these guys have been making spinnerbaits for years and have quality components to make sure you don’t lose that fish of a lifetime.

As far as colours go, I tend to stick to the more natural colours like dark red and blacks, but I have friends that swear by fluoro colours. It really is a guessing game and more about putting your lure right in front of the fish’s face.

If you haven’t tried surface fishing for Murray cod yet, then I suggest you give it a go. It is the most intense form of fishing you could have. Fishing the low light periods of the day and into the night is by far the most productive. Walkers or paddler type lures seem to be the most popular. The wakebait type surface lures were a standout for me last year, but any big surface lure is worth a shot.

Lake Hume has been ticking over nicely all November, and the yellowbelly and redfin are starting to feed more aggressively. There were some truly monster yellowbelly caught last month, and a couple I know of measured out past 65cm, with numerous others past the magic 60cm mark. Most of these fish were caught trolling or casting but a few fell to bait.

The trout seemed to have slowed down, which was expected once the warmer days arrived. There was still a few big trout caught though, so with less people targeting trout through December it might be worth giving them a go. It might pay to troll a little deeper, either by using a lead core line outfit or a downrigger. The ever-popular Tassie devil would have to be the best trout lure ever made and also a good lure to use on a downrigger. Minnow style lures don’t tend to swim very well when submersed to deep depths.

In short, December is Murray cod month, so be sure to get out there and hopefully hook into a few.

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