Hot run of big cod
  |  First Published: June 2006

From Swan Hill to Wentworth and beyond, anglers are experiencing a sensational run of large Murray cod on lures and bait.

Just ask a couple of anglers fishing around Pentel Island, upstream of Swan Hill. After landing a 14kg cod on a yabby, the last they had, the boys decided to keep the fish. While cleaning it, the stomach contents revealed the yabby the cod had just dined on.

Looking a little worse for wear, it was threaded on a hook and cast back into the river. You guessed it, five minutes later they were into another fish, only this one was much bigger.

Guesstimated at around 45kg, it shows the benefits of double-dipping. With one for the table, there was no questioning the release of the monster cod which, by all reports, swam away to once again spur the imagination of visiting anglers.

Robinvale has also been producing some quality cod, more so on lures than bait. The water in this section of the Murray is deep and calls for lures that can reach the strike zone.


Many visiting anglers become frustrated by the lack of action and in most cases the fault comes down to poor lure choice rather than lack of co-operation on the fish’s behalf. It’s mandatory when fishing the pool water around Robinvale to have a selection of lures that will dive to at least seven metres-plus.

Most of the bigger fish hold deep on the snags and are reluctant to pursue a lure over any distance. This is an in-your-face fishery; the closer the lure gets to a big cod the more likely it is to eat it.

Wentworth is another area worthy of note as it fishes well when the weather cools. Fort Courage, on the old Wentworth Road, is a popular destination that has begun to fire for plenty of quality fish.

Jamie Roberts made the journey from one of our more notable cod fisheries, Lake Mulwala, to try his luck for a few days. Trolling lures, he managed to land two cod over 20kg, only to be blown away by a much bigger fish in the same location. All three fish were hooked within close proximity of each other, which poses the question of how territorial are these big fish?

It has become common practice for us to work the same area after landing a big fish and on most occasions it’s joined by another and, in some instances, several. Perhaps big cod are far more tolerant of each other than the experts would have us believe.

As the weather continues to cool, it’s likely the fishing will only improve.

Winter is without doubt the best time to catch a big cod. While you may not catch many fish, those you do will be well worth the effort.

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