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Prospecting for goldens
  |  First Published: October 2004



IT’S A fantastic time of year here, with spring bringing on some great weather and plenty of options.

Lake Hume is low in comparison to previous years but I’m willing to stick my neck out and be very optimistic about its prospects for golden perch. It may be a big call, but there’s a very good chance that the water levels will still be rising. In previous years when this has been the case the golden perch have really fired, with catches including some thumpers that looked more like footballs.

Prospecting for a trophy golden is best done trolling slowly along the margins of the lake. Golden perch hang around the hard clay bottoms and those rocky timbered banks. October is usually the month when the golden perch switch on. The rising temperatures spark them into gear and they can be found in shallower water than most anglers would expect.

I’ve found that trolling over the contours in about 3m is the best bet, and having a mix of lures swimming at different depths pays – say, one kicking along the bottom and one mid-water. As in previous years, chances are that the Bowna area and up towards the Whyma Ferry end will be the pick of the spots

The trout fishing around the dam wall has been reasonable. Trolled Cobra-type lures, primarily in pink as well as silver, have picked up plenty of brown trout. This month, chances are that the numbers caught will taper off with the hotter days. I’m sure persistent anglers will be rewarded, however, and there’s probably a great chance of getting into a few bigger fish too.

This year will be the first Lake Hume Fishing Classic, and it’s going to be held over the weekend of November 13-14. It’s being run by the SS&A anglers club and the Rotary Club of Bellbridge Lake Hume. There are categories for all species, with the major prizes awarded for the golden perch catch and release sections. There’s a host of great prizes, including a boat and motor package and also a Yamaha 5hp motor as the ‘early bird’ prize. Best of all, a healthy percentage of profits will be put back into the lake in conjunction with the Rex Hunt Futurefish Foundation. If you’d like more information, drop me an email or give me a buzz on 0418 687 593.

SPILLWAY TIME

Below the wall the trout should be in action with the water heights increased. Down on the rocks on the NSW bank will be the pick of the spots, and those heavy lead fish will be best. The best time for the trout will be very early in the morning, but for the civilised angler the evenings and into the dark are good too – and that’s usually when the big ones are caught.

Golden perch will be here in numbers once the river height comes up substantially, and they are usually quite willing. Lures cast and retrieved in backwashes close to any sort of structure should yield the best results. There’s no need for crash diving lures here; lures that dive between 1-2m are perfect.

While on the topic of chasing the yellas here, if you do happen to get into plenty – which can happen – please be conservative with your catch and preferably keep only the small ones. These fish are here to spawn, and although it’s not likely they do it successfully, it’s still a sensible strategy to ensure future fishing. Last year a selfish group had a field day killing too many to mention, and these I heard were wasted – and for what? Nothing more than an ego trip I presume!

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