How fast things change!
  |  First Published: November 2007

It is amazing how things change so quickly. A few months ago things were looking good for the season with a little rain, dams and rivers rising and more rain predicted. Now we are worse off than last season and with government bodies looking very closely at irrigation this season it could become hard to even find a decent hole in the rivers to put your boat in.

The lack of water of the past few seasons makes you realise how tough our native fish really are. I’m sure there are a few monster cod in those rivers sitting there thinking they’ve seen worse than this.

Even though the drought has been going or some time, the fishing continues to improve.

Although the Macquarie River is extremely low and launching a boat is becoming harder, there are still plenty of options and this river generally rewards you with a fish if you persist.

Fishing from the bank or launching a boat to work a particular stretch will reward you with a few good fish. Remember, the cod season remains closed until December 1.

Bait fishing was been a little slow, mainly due to the clear water although some good yellowbelly have been caught in the Warren area. Fishing just above the weirs is your best bet to get some extended water depth.


A rise came down the Darling recently, which has triggered good reports of yellowbelly on bait at Louth and Tilpa, where the water is flowing again. Before this the fishing was very patchy.

Looking ahead to the opening season, with water warming up the fishing should be good. It is still a little murky but if it doesn’t rain (a pretty safe bet these days) the water will clear and trolling and spinning will be best options.


Results from the Hook, line and sinker competition at Hillston were very pleasing to hear. With 380 people registered in the weekend competition, 806 cod were caught: 215 from 30cm to 39cm; 239 from 40cm to 49cm, 172 between 50cm and 59cm, 45 between 60cm and 69cm and 13 from 70cm to 79cm. Eight cod between 80cm and 89cm, were caught, three between 90cm and 99cm and one over the magic metre mark. It was also great to hear that more than 90% of these fish were released.

Only 103 carp were caught so it seems the old Murray cod are making a huge comeback.


Wyangala Dam has quietened down a little with the most recent flush settling and the water becoming clearer. Bait fishing will still produce some fish in the clear water with the best bait being scrub worms.

Burrendong is producing some big yellowbelly and some silver perch on the troll. People have also catching the odd the decent redfin, which is always handy for the table. Bait is producing some nice catfish, which seem to becoming a rare catch in many places.

The Grabine Classic in August at Wyangala had mixed results. There were 23 fish caught and released over the weekend with two cod, the larger of 10.035kg released by John Foran from Bathurst. There were 21 golden perch, with the largest of 1.26kg released by Rick Connolly of Carcoar. From all reports a fantastic weekend was had by all.

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