Rains bring welcome relief
  |  First Published: June 2007

It is a pleasure to report that we have just received a heap of rain that has freshened up our few remaining lakes, rivers and creeks. The chain of puddles that were the Wimmera River in Horsham have now joined together to make it look like a river again and more water will hopefully make it harder on the growing number of pelicans here that have been taking huge amounts of fish from this water.

I haven’t been doing as much fishing locally as I normally do as the great run of bluefin tuna down the coast has been number one priority for me on the weekends. However I have still been fishing Lake Wartook regularly and it has been pretty good. With the native fish waters now out of action over winter, it doesn’t leave me with a huge variety of places to fish but the quality of the trout fishing has made up for it.

Lake Wartook

This lake has been a reliable destination for local and visiting trout-chasers alike, with good browns and rainbows being taken. Anglers fishing from the wall and from boats have been doing well, with baitfishing producing the best results. The boat ramp is still out of the water but small boats can be launched with care.

It is mostly rainbow trout to 1.6kg that are being captured, along with a few browns. I recently fished from the wall using baits of unweighted yabby tails or mudeyes under bubble floats, and caught and released two nice trout. Early morning is the best time to be fishing, when the trout feed very close in, chasing minnows all over the place. Flyfishing with a good minnow pattern like a Bushys Horror or Matuka should do well here too.

June is always a productive month to be fishing Wartook and with the rains we have been getting we might see the lake start flooding some new ground which can produce some great flyfishing for browns foraging in the shallows.

Wimmera River

The river is now looking excellent after the great rains but we still need a fair bit more to bring her fully back to life. I have no fishing reports from here of late as the fishing slows right down over the winter months.

Lake Bellfield

There have been plenty of people fishing here lately with a few nice rainbow trout still being taken, mostly from the shore. Best baits have been scrubworm and mudeye fished under bubble floats, with the flyfishers also getting a few fish on Mrs Simpson flies. The trout have been feeding heavily on minnows and are often seen smashing apart the minnow schools.

There are a few areas where water is flowing in after the rains and they would be well worth a look. Remember though that the closed trout stream season applies from after the Queens Birthday weekend, so stay within the lake’s margins where there will be plenty of trout about.

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