Copeton is drawing in keen cod fishos
  |  First Published: July 2017

Copeton continues to draw cod fishers from around Australia for the winter big fish season. Over the last month, we have had many of the country’s top cod fishers at Copeton and if they haven’t been here yet then they’re on their way.

The big fish continue to be the drawcard for most Copeton fishers at this time of year. The more people involved in the fishery, the faster the techniques have been developing. The big move this year has been to swimbaits. These ultra-realistic lures have taken over from the big surface wakebaits that were so popular last year. The big fish are still on the flats in all areas around the dam.

The technique with the swimbaits has been to cast into the shallows and then just slow roll the bait back out into deeper water. These baits can be worked ultra-slow, as the fish will convince themselves that the piece of plastic or wood looks just too good not to eat.

It seems that often the cod that have been hunting the flats under the cover of darkness until sunrise may not retreat as far or deep as we thought. Once the sun hits the water, start to look for areas of cover in water that is 10-20ft deep adjacent to the flats. Areas of rock or heavy timber on a point would warrant some prospecting with a deeper running swimbait or chatterbait.

So far this winter has proved to be one of the best ever for the actual numbers of cod being caught and also for the average size. In one week I know six fish were caught over 120cm and maybe another 20 over the metre. There is absolutely no doubt that Copeton has secured its claim to be the cod capital of Australia

The Copeton Cod Classic filled its quota of competitors within a couple of weeks of opening for registrations. For those who want to book accommodation for this event, contact the office as soon as you can to avoid disappointment. The competition will be held over the weekend of 15-17 September. The pre-fish ban is in place from Monday 11 until midnight Thursday 14.

The briefing will be held Friday night up at the Copeton Waters Function Centre at 7.00pm. Fishing will start after dinner and a briefing. Fishing is permitted over the entire weekend until 8.00am Sunday morning and breakfast will also be available on Sunday morning.

The Copeton Yella Challenge has been announced for the end of October and entries are now open. Copeton’s yellowbelly are often overshadowed by the hype around our Murray cod, but it must be acknowledged that Copeton is also one of the best yellowbelly fisheries in the country. This competition will also be capped to a limited number of teams, so jump onto the AYC Fishing Tournament website for more details and entry information.

• Copeton Dam is one of the best lakes in NSW to catch a trophy Murray cod. Dave runs the Copeton Waters Holiday Park and is a great source of up to date, local information on what’s biting. Contact the park on (02) 6723 6269 for information and accommodation bookings.

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