Redfin and Trout in the Wimmera
  |  First Published: August 2005

Cold, wet and windy conditions have been keeping the majority of local anglers off the water. August is typically a windy month here in the Wimmera, at times making fishing difficult. With the best trout fishing being early in the mornings or in freezing conditions, it is not unusual to share one of our great lakes with only a handful of other anglers at this time of the year.

Keen trout anglers putting in a bit of time and effort have been rewarded with some excellent trout fishing at Lake Wartook and Fyans in particular. The trout at these waters have finished with their spawning urges and are now starting to feed normally and predictably again.

We have received some good rainfalls over the last month with Lake Wartook at 86% and rising at the time of writing. Even Lake Bellfield has been slowly rising. Lake Fyans and Rocklands however, are very low and haven’t risen significantly at all in the past month. Let’s hope that over August we get some more rains or it will be very difficult to fish Fyans in another month’s time.

Lake Fyans

The water level here is sitting at 26% of capacity. Small boats can still be launched with care on the south bank but the low weedy water around the lake’s margins makes fishing from the shore very difficult and not productive at present.

Over the last month the fishing has been a bit on and off here, which is typical when the trout are in spawning mode. Feeding is often the last thing the trout are thinking about. Now that spawning is over, the fishing is getting better with mudeyes fished under bubble floats producing the best results. Trolling is very difficult at present with the shallow weedy water.

Some brown trout to 2kg have been taken but it’s the rainbows that have been the dominant species. Some of these hard-fighting rainbows have weighed up to 1.8kg. The average size though is around 1kg. The best method is to fish a mudeye about a metre below the float in any weed bed area with a bit of deeper water around it. I usually try a spot for 30 minutes or so. If I get no bites or don’t see any trout feeding in the area then I move a short distance and try another spot.

While fishing for trout here with mudeyes, some nice redfin have also been taken, averaging around 500g. When I start taking redfin on the float rigs I often swap the bait rod over to a light spinning rod and cast a small Celta or Vibrax spinner around.

It is possible to take redfin to 2kg or more from this water but the larger reddies seem to have been few and far between at Fyans this year.

Lake Wartook

The water levels have been slowly rising here over the past month and the trout have been starting to feed a lot better now they’ve finished spawning. Brown trout to 2.2kg have been taken with around 1 to 1.3kg being the average size fish.

Bait fishing either off the wall or from boats has been the best method with early morning being the most productive time to be on the water. Trolling has been a little quiet here lately.

Mudeyes fished under bubble floats have been taking the majority of fish to boat anglers fishing the reedy areas of the lake. Off the wall, mudeyes have been working well but also worth a try are scrubworms or peeled yabby tails, fished unweighted or on a light running sinker rig.

The flyfishing has been getting better, especially in the newly flooded ground areas up the north end of the lake. Casting from a drifting boat has been the best method with Mrs Simpson and Woolly Worm type flies working well.

Rocklands Reservoir

The fishing has started to get a little bit better here over the last month but you still do have to put in the hard yards to get amongst the best fishing.

Anglers trolling the wall end area of the lake with StumpJumpers and Rapala CD5s have taken some nice catches of redfin to nearly 2kg. You might need to cover a lot of water before you get onto the fish on any given day and be prepared to get plenty of snags. A lure retriever of some sort is a must here.

Bait fishing from a drifting boat with minnow or gudgeon should also produce a few nice big redfin.Rocklands is low at present but boats can still be launched with care at the wall area.

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