It’s winter time – that’s trout time/Winter time is trout time
  |  First Published: August 2005

As winter starts to make its presence felt, many anglers are prepared to put the fishing gear away and wait until the warmer weather returns. For those of us who are not prepared to do that, there is still plenty of fishing action to be had. Whilst there are still native species available to persistent anglers, it’s the trout that will attract most attention.


It’s important to take note of the fishing regulations that apply to the Goulburn River upstream of the Trawool Bridge. During the closed salmonid season, the Goulburn River is closed to all hook and line fishing from the Trawool Bridge upstream to the Eildon Pondage, but not including the pondage. You can still try your luck for Murray crays during their open season but hook and line fishing is prohibited.

Anglers fishing downstream of the Trawool Bridge have been taking some very good redfin. Trout have also been caught but these must be returned to the water. As we move further into winter this section of the river will slow down completely and your time will be better spent fishing the lakes.


The lake is currently at 28% capacity and rising slowly. The recent rain should increase the level of the lake and submerge some of the boat ramps that are currently out of the water.

As the weather cools the trout are really making their presence felt. Brown trout have made up the majority of catches with some exceptional fish up to 4kg taken. The average brown is around 750g. The Big River arm, Gough’s Bay and the ‘powerlines’ are good starting points.

I fished the Big River Arm in late June with my sixteen-year-old son David. We took trout to 1.5kg, all of which were in excellent condition. David took the biggest fish, a female of 1.5kg. No respect for his elders! This fish was in excellent condition and put up a very strong fight. We fished with a combination of Lofty’s lures and deep diving minnows. Both types took fish but the deep divers took the bigger ones. Rainbow trout colours and purples were the most successful.

The Eildon Pondage is also starting to fish well. Both bait and lure anglers are taking trout to 3kg.

With not a lot of options available at this time of year, the Eildon district is certainly an attractive destination for anglers. While trout will be the target species for most anglers, make sure you have at least one deep diver out because the yellowbelly are still being taken.

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