Rain whets appetite for next season
  |  First Published: July 2007

The fishing in the majority of central Victorian locations continues to be disappointing. On a positive note there has been recent rainfall. Many areas have received their highest rainfall totals for the month of May in over a decade. We can only hope this trend continues and, if so, we may be set for some fantastic fishing in spring when increasing water temperatures and rising water levels will produce a flurry in fish activity.

Lake Eppalock

Not many anglers are fishing Lake Eppalock at present. Reports of captures are scarce and this will continue until spring arrives. The majority of fishing has been done off the banks by bait fishermen. Captures are mainly of small redfin, European carp and the occasional golden perch.

It has been pleasing to see some major works being undertaken to improve some of the boat ramps around the lake. We can only hope that the lakes levels continue to rise and we again begin to see the lake at its full potential.

The rainfall so far this season has been perfect. Good soaking rains have put moisture into the creek beds, which are now primed to produce good run-off. The mild temperatures have led to good soil temperatures and with the rainfall this has promoted good revegetation around the banks. This all equates to fish food and improved water clarity.

Campaspe River

The fishing in the Campaspe River has also been slow in recent weeks, with only small numbers of Murray cod and golden perch being caught. The most productive areas for these two species have been the pooled waters at Elmore and Rochester. The minimal success has been had by anglers targeting the weed beds with lipless crankbaits and spinnerbaits. The best colours are dark colours such as black and purple. Anglers using hard-bodied lures are producing results on metallic and dark colours.

For the next couple of months many anglers will change tactics and concentrate the majority of their fishing effort on the river’s redfin population. July will be an excellent time to catch quality redfin. The most productive methods are casting lipless crankbaits and casting or trolling small hard-bodied lures. Good success is also had at this time of the year by anglers targeting the redfin with bladed spinners such as hogbacks. Water clarity is still good and while this remains lure fishing for redfin will be productive. However, if we continue to receive heavy rainfall the water clarity may decline.

Cairn Curran

Not many fishermen are targeting Cairn Curran, however the recent rainfall has started to produce a rise in the lake’s level. It shouldn’t be too long before we will be able to launch boats on the lake again. This should see good numbers of anglers venturing out onto the lake targeting the quality redfin that the lake holds.

It is also an excellent time to target the lake’s resident trout population. Good success will be had by anglers targeting the inflows at the top of the lake. Usually the most productive method is baitfishing because of the poor water clarity. Best baits are mudeyes, worms or gudgeon.

Loddon River

The fishing in the Loddon River has been tough going. The best reports have come from a limited number of fishermen fishing the Newbridge area. Golden perch of 2-3kg have been landed. Small numbers of Murray cod measuring 50-60cm have also been caught. If the recent rainfall continues then water clarity here will decline and the productivity of lure fishing will decrease.

In the deeper section at Bridgewater, results have been poor. Redfin up to 1kg have been caught casting and retrieving lipless crankbaits. Fishermen are also having limited success trolling small hard-bodied lures along the edges of the weed beds. Usually it is well worth targeting the redfin the day after we receive significant rainfall. Any rise in levels or increases in current flow can be directly related to improved catch rates.

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