I recently had the pleasure of being a part of the 2005 Cod Classic. There were many familiar faces given the large number of Central Victorian anglers who tried their luck at Lake Mulwala.
It was my first time at the competition and I was amazed at the number of anglers and how efficiently the event was organised. It’s a credit to Tony and Vanessa Bennett and all the sponsors and volunteers.
On the local seen there is a mixture of both good and bad news. Cairn Curran is finally starting to produce some quality bags of redfin. Over the last few months it has continued to disappoint but finally things have turned the corner. Anglers who have been targeting redfin are having the majority of success in deep water around 8m.
Local angler Mal Bowen has enjoyed good success using yabbies and trolling deep diving lures. Some of the most productive lures are Custom Crafted Bass Hunters and Scuds, Australian Crafted lures and deep diving Feral Catts. There also has been good numbers caught on ice jigs.
Another local waterway that’s currently producing good numbers of redfin is Waranga Basin. This impoundment fished extremely well last season and everything is indicating that this season should be every bit as good as last. Anglers are enjoying good success on both bait and lures. The best bait for redfin is currently gudgeon or small yabbies. The best lure colours have been those with a firetail colour scheme or the traditional red and black. Anglers running a soft plastic 30cm in front of small lures are also having success.
The Campaspe River at both Elmore and Rochester is fishing consistently. The majority of fish have been caught on lures.
Water clarity is very good and both spinnerbaits and hard-bodied lures have produced some quality specimens. A small number of anglers have been jigging soft plastics along the edges of timber. One of the bonuses of fishing this way is that small numbers of redfin can be caught in between the native action.
The Loddon River has proven again to be a popular destination. Water clarity is exceptional. If fishing in the ski zone at Bridgewater it is possible to spot lures 2 metres under the surface. For this reason the fishing has been slow during the middle of the day with the fish being skittish in bright conditions.
The best times to target the Loddon are during low light conditions. Early in the morning and late afternoon is when the majority of fish are caught. Generally, days of good cloud cover are ideal and catch rates will exceed those achieved on bright sunny days.
Local angler Derek Blow has been having good success on lipless crank baits – both the Jackall and Daiwa lures are consistently catching fish.
The Loddon Classic Fishing Competition was held at Bridgewater on 3 and 4December. There were 87 boats that managed 39 fish. A total of 18 Murray cod were caught, the largest of which was caught by Shaye Eastman. It measured 87cm.
Jack Bradley landed himself the largest golden perch, which measured 51cm. These fish won them both a rod and reel donated by Russ Healy.
There was a total of 21 golden perch caught during the competition.
First place went to Ken and Jack Bradley who won two Stessl boats and two 9.8hp Tohatsu motors donated by Ballarat Marine Centre and Tohatsu. Second place went to Brendan and Lochlan Doyle who had the choice between Oliver Swags or two fish finders that were donated by Hartleys Fishing & Guns. Third place went to Shaye Eastman and Hugh Lethlean. The committee would like to thank all competitors and sponsors for another very successful competition and look forward to next year’s event.Reads: 1798