Speckled Surprises at West Barwon
  |  First Published: August 2006

Catching a feed has been tough work lately but there are still some good fish being landed by those who are putting in the time.

The beaches are still producing good salmon for bait and lure anglers. Most have been slightly less than 1kg. The best beaches have been at Glen Aire and Johanna. Both have large deep channels close to shore, which means that you can catch fish even when the swell is up. A flat sea will deliver better results and just about guarantee that you see some action.

If you plan on hanging around after dark then use a fresh strip of salmon fillet for bait because some big gummy sharks have been taken from these beaches recently. Remember that there is a bag limit of two gummies a day. Unfortunately, I often see anglers keeping more than they are allowed.

Rock fishermen have been seeing some hot action and have been reporting some big whiting captures from the stones around Kennett River. Squid and pipis have been the gun baits. One fish measured an impressive 53cm and weighed right on 1kg!

Garfish have been caught on the rising tide using a float rig and berley in the protected bays all along the Great Ocean Road. Some of the gar schools have been so thick that, when using two hooks, landing two fish each cast has been common.

In the Fresh

Some keen locals, including myself, have been venturing inland to the West Barwon Dam in search of some winter trout. We’ve been surprised by the quality of the fishing, with both rainbow and browns taking lures cast from the bank.

Average fish have weighed around 1kg but some bigger specimens have been fooled, including one taken by Josh Lee who surprised everyone by landing a specimen we estimated to weigh 2.8kg.

The water level is very low, making access around the bank easier than normal. Just watch out for the slippery mud banks when navigating your way along the shore.

Most of the action has been taking place towards the back of the dam, but don’t overlook the small shallow bays that line the shore in the middle reaches. These are prime places for trout to ambush their prey.

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