Waranga Redfin Fire Up
  |  First Published: July 2006

The cooler weather has certainly arrived early this year although it doesn’t seem to have dampened the fishing. If anything, the fishing has improved.

In early June, water temperatures in the Goulburn River averaged around 11. Anglers were still catching Murray cod and trout had become more consistent, before the riverine season closed. Not even the low level of the river has been enough to put the fish off.

One angler I spoke to, Daryl Blemner from Castlemaine, had his 6’ 6” one piece rod broken in two by something very large off the bank at Seymour. He’s certain it could only have been a big Murray cod.

While I would expect the cod to slow down from now on I wouldn’t give up on them completely. The numbers might not be there but the quality is excellent.

Further downstream in the more recognised native fish section of the Goulburn. Popular areas such as Toolamba and Undera were still fishing well in June.

Baitfishing is the most successful method but you need to make sure you’re fishing water where there is some flow. Fish in the shallow water rather than deep – it is providing the best results.


Lake Mokoan has been reasonable for those who have put the time in. Whilst small to medium size yellowbelly have made up most anglers’ bags there are still enough cod being taken to make them worth targeting too.

This lake has a large band of devotees who only fish from the bank. They do very well indeed. So if you don’t have a boat and would like somewhere to go where you can catch some very good fish consistently then give Mokoan some consideration. It can be fished virtually all year round although the warmer months are more popular.


Over the past month the jewel in the crown has been Waranga Basin. I always look forward to a trip to Waranga when the reddies are on the go.

A recent phone call from Russell Ford informed me that he had just returned from a very successful trip to Waranga taking redfin up to 3lb. That news had me packing the gear straight away. Since then my whole family have enjoyed three very successful outings.

The redfin have been very aggressive, hitting lures with a force close to some of the best Australian bass I’ve caught. Trolling has been most popular with the fish holding in about 15ft. You will need a lure that can get down to that depth – we have had most success with Jensen Hotlips and Manns 15+. Try red, orange or a redfin pattern.

We have also had a lot of success on the redfin with spinnerbaits and lipless crankbaits. When using spinnerbaits I like to use a stinger hook with soft plastic tail attached.

Spinnerbaits and lipless crankbaits work best when drifting and casting. To get the best results we troll first until we find a productive patch. Then we just drift over that area casting from the boat. The use of a GPS helps to keep you in the right area.

I haven’t tried them yet but I suspect that ice jigs would also work well. If bait is your preference then worms and yabbies are best.

Waranga also supports a large population of Murray crayfish, which can be a real bonus if you get enough for a feed. A maximum of 5 hoop nets per person can be used to take crays from Waranga.

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