With the improvement in the weather we are already starting to see the results in the local fishing. Purrumbete continues to be the standout. Local taxidermists will be hoping that the big fish remain active throughout the spring and into summer. Water levels are a problem though, and it is still tough launching bigger boats.
Don’t let this put you off, as there are good numbers of fish being taken from the shore. Mudeyes under a float are the best bait. Whether you are on the bank or in a boat, mudeyes fished around the weeds should bring results. Peter Gardeniers, from Sunbury, landed a massive brown of 4.75kg using bullheads while fishing from Hoses Rocks. This fish went straight to the taxidermist. Other fish over 3kg have been caught on both flies and lures. Hardbodied lures have been popular, as have soft plastics. With some fish now close to shore cleaning up on snails, and more insects about in the evenings, there is sure to be plenty of success for flyfishers too.
Bullen Merri is still rather spasmodic, with trolling down deep the most successful method. Reports of a few fish caught on bait from the bank, and also the odd fish on flies, have been keeping anglers interested. Fishing should improve as the water temperatures increase and minnows move in along the banks. Due to the depth of this lake water temperatures won’t change quickly, but when they do we may even see a few bass showing up in angler’s creels.
West Barwon Dam is still a good spot to try. With higher water levels, there have been some fish mooching along the edges, making good targets for both flyfishers and lure tossers.
Wurdi Buloc has been getting a bit more angling pressure, with a pathway over the rock wall now giving better access to the inside of the lake. This should make things a lot easier for the elderly, and for kids as well.
Local rivers are running clear. The Gellibrand and Carlisle rivers are both OK for trout to 1kg if using baits of worms. This month should see the appearance of the evening rise. With the willow clearing that took place over the last two years opening up new sections of the river, free rising fish should provide great fishing for the local fly fraternity again this year.
October can be the best time to get into some oversize browns in the estuaries and lower sections of both the Aire and Gellibrand rivers. Big trout chasing minnows, especially when the rivers are high, will take hardbodied lures, with Rebel broken-backs a favourite. Flies like red and black Fuzzy Wuzzys are good patterns to use.