The middle of summer can be very rewarding for the freshwater angler, especially at Blowering Dam, where it is possible to catch three or more species of fish on the same day, sometimes within minutes of each other.
Redfin comprise the bulk of most anglers’ catch and can be caught quite easily around the margins of the dam.
Bait fishing from a boat or the bank around submerged snags, weed beds, rocky points or drop-offs is a very good way of getting a feed of redfin.
Best baits are small yabbies or garden worms. I like to use them on a two-hook paternoster rig when targeting the redfin; the two hooks give you a chance of catching two fish at a time but also it takes a lot longer for the little fish to find the second hook, giving the bigger ones a chance to take the other bait.
Casting or trolling are great ways of targeting redfin and when they’re really on, it doesn’t matter which type of lure you use or what colour, they’ll hit pretty much anything. I’ve even caught them on bare jig heads and mates have caught them on bare hooks.
But there are days where it can be hard to tempt them, when it pays to regularly change the colours and actions of your lures until you find one that works.
Some of my favourite reddie lures include small StumpJumpers in the tutti frutti colour, lipless crank baits, Stuckeys, Scrounger soft plastics and brightly coloured Rooster Tails.
The odd trout is still getting caught even though the water has warmed up. Most have been caught on bait with some taking worms and some big grubs aimed at Murray cod.
The native fish tend to be happy to hit a bait or lure, especially cod, but it pays to choose your fishing times carefully because most action is around sunup or just on and after dark. But if there is a heap of storm activity this can keep the fish firing all day long.
I recently took Dean Buckley and his mates from Team Outlaw Spinnerbaits to Blowering to target golden perch and on another trip for cod.
Dean and got some fairly good video footage of a few cod and a couple of goldens, which you can see on YouTube under Unique Fishing Adventures or Buckley’s Lures.
The ’Bidgee has had plenty of water flushed down it to suit irrigator and electricity demands, and the higher water level makes a lot of the river accessible even to fairly large boats.
Anglers have been blessed with a great start to the cod season with lots of fish landed and it is only the canoeists who are unhappy – the river is flowing too fast for them.
Bait fishing in the deeper holes has been very successful. Although these days a lot of anglers look at bait fishing as boring, it can still be very exciting, especially on the Murrumbidgee.
In the deeper holes you never know what is going to eat your bait next, be it a cod, yella, redfin, carp or a hard-fighting trout cod. Shrimp, if you can find them, are easily the best bait in the river but juicy grubs, preferably bardis, are the gun bait for cod.
Casting lures has been a bit patchy, mainly due to the flow making it difficult to present your lure properly.
However, trolling, especially repeat trolling, has been very rewarding.
Submerged mid-river snags have been the flavour of the month. These snags can be found with your sounder or by saving their GPS position during low-flow periods. Repeat runs over these types of snags have produced some good results.
Changing lure colour every second or third run is a good way of bringing out the hard-to-tempt fish. No particular colour is working at the moment so it pays to change fairly regularly.Reads: 11529