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Always expect the unexpected
  |  First Published: August 2006



Fishing is a funny game. Just when you think that you have worked out a pattern for a certain fish, something extraordinary happens.

This event often goes against everything you thought that was supposed to be correct. This happened to me recently when my brother, Dad and I headed off to the Barwon River near Walgett for a weekend.

To say the weather was crap was an understatement but having travelled so many kilometres, we had to try. When fishing for natives the usual ‘right’ conditions include a rising barometer or rising water along with a moderate to hot day.

When we arrived on the river it was rainy and cold and my confidence was at an all-time low. And when the rod bent over, my first thought was that I must have hooked a duck because that is about the only animal out on such a day. What followed were two great days fishing in rainy and cold weather. At the end of we were dumbfounded; everything we have ever thought of as good practices were thrown out the window– that’s fishing!

MACQUARIE RIVER

These days whenever I travel I pack a rod and some tackle because you never know when you will get a chance to wet a line. I had opportunity to fish the Macquarie just out of Narromine after a conference in Forbes ended early. I decided to hit a rock bar in the river with my trusty spinnerbait and after about 10 minutes a nice cod of about 50cm smacked the lure. It just goes to show you should fish when you can and often the most unprepared trip can come up trumps.

The Macquarie remains clear and spinning is the best option at this time of year because the cod aren’t really after a feed but a lure will annoy them and they just might hit it out of frustration. Bait will still catch fish if you persist but the best chance of hooking one is definitely with a lure.  

DARLING, BARWON

The Bourke Outback Fishing Challenge was held on the June long weekend. The best fish was an 11.8kg pound cod caught on bait by Mick Davis. It was very pleasing to hear that this cod was released, which needs to happen more often, especially out here in the west. The best golden perch was a 41cm model caught by Len Eastwood.

Considering the conditions over the long weekend the competition was a success. The most important thing to come out of this competition was that there was enough money raised to go towards restocking the river, which remains dirty with moderate flows.

THE LACHLAN

Around Forbes the Lachlan remains low and a little murky. Out towards Condobolin and Hillston, the river was clear at the time of writing and these are the areas to head out to at this time of year, where cod can react to lures more freely. The Lachlan has remained relatively quiet, something I experienced recently when I went for a fish just out of Forbes. Over an hour-and-a-half I experienced only a couple of small bites on bait.  

WYANGALA, BURRENDONG

A recent report from Wyangala once again goes against the conventional patterns for certain fish, when an angler had a great afternoon trolling up a heap of nice goldens. Wyangala at this time of year is generally quiet but this report just goes to show every day is different.

Burrendong and Wyangala are relatively low and this is not good news. If this pattern continues it will mean few water releases down the rivers in the Summer. We need some good rain and then follow-up falls to get the run-off to lift the levels of these dams so we can have enough water to push down the rivers to trigger the fish in the waterways.

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