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Thank cod, they’re back
  |  First Published: December 2016



Those itchy twitchy feelings you get this time of year when you hear cod are starting to stir. With a three-month hiatus on cod fishing all but over, it’s time to blow the cob webs off the native gear and plan your assault on the next month or two’s fishing. Unusually high water levels in many places may make things tough, but one thing’s for sure: Lake Mulwala will be at its constant high level producing quality cod day after day after day.

Early season water clarity will still be fairly ordinary. Bait fishing will be a standout and results should be impressive. If closed season by-catches are anything to go by, it should be a cracker. Grubs or scrub worms should be your preferred option. Yabbies and cheese are other safe baits. Lure wise, options are endless, but put thought into your choice. Personally, I like lures with either contrasting fluoro colours, or that emit good noise or vibration. Falling into this category are Colorado bladed spinnerbaits, Jackall style crankbaits and 100mm+ hardbody lures.

If water and flow levels remain high, yellas should be going bezerk below the weir.

Above and beyond all lures, especially early in the season, surface lures and wake baits will stand alone. They’ve been the trend over the last few seasons, and there have been more quality cod taken off the top than down below. Noisy Ninjas, Mud Eye Snakes, Koolabung wake and surface, Jackall Pompadours and Westin lures are a great starting point. What we need is a talking fish to tell you what they like!

Looking back, it was good to have something to be excited about as the yellas fired when floodwaters hit the lake. Fishos had to hide behind trees just to bait their line and avoid it being stolen before it hit the water! Little Eve Sharp had a field day catching numerous 50cm+ specimens. Head burger flipper from Big Mick’s Diner Mick Montalti was another to get on the board with yellas to 55cms. The best photo I saw came from a group of four high school girls who were each proudly holding a yella taken off the Yarrawonga foreshore after school.

The annual Golden Dollars Fishing Tournament proved to be a tough affair. Being a lure-only event, along with wind conditions that made it impossible to fish the lake, captured yellas were going to be worth their weight in gold. Near on 50 dedicated native fishos hit the waters, mainly above Bundalong, in search of the action in fast running dirty water. In total, only 13 yellas were returned to scale for measuring and release. Kyle Dalrymple and Jamie Beer came up trumps and landed fish in both sessions – enough to earn them the Champion Team title.

Thomas Pinter and Johnny Papageorgiou were the second team to land a couple and their two fish won second place. Chris Crabb and Steven Fraser were the last team to score the double for the day. Even though their fish were small, it was enough to land them in third position. Dan Thompson pulled a beauty late on Saturday arvo measuring 496mm that was the largest fish for the weekend took out the arvo session win. Dan certainly deserved the angler of the day title, as he also boated four healthy cod measuring up to 80cm. Cooper Bennett was another to land a welcomed by-catch when he landed a nice 77cm fat pig of a Murray cod.

Organisation is well under way for the 2016 Yamaha Cod Classic and it promises to be huge, with something for everybody. Prizes include seven boating packages and plenty more. Until next edition, happy fishing.

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Cooper Bennett and 77cm of welcome by-catch Murray cod.

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