Many Ways to Catch a Bass
  |  First Published: March 2003


Lake Cressbrook has been fishing quite well lately, with good reports coming from anglers using various methods to make their catches.

Spinnerbaits, lipless crankbaits and beetle spins have been scoring plenty of fish around the weed beds. Many of these fish are undersized, so be sure to release them unharmed. Extra-large bass occasionally turn up between the small fish, and I’ve heard of a couple recently that were well-conditioned fish over 50cm long.

Slider grubs have been successful around the schooling bass. Some of the better sized fish can be found holding around points in six to ten metres of water. I’ve noticed that these bigger fish haven’t necessarily been holding in big schools.

Lure trolling the weed edges with shallow runners will account for small bass and a rare yellowbelly. For better action, head to the deeper water out from the toilet point in Bull Creek arm. The bass here are thick at times and at other times they are scattered consistently throughout the entire area. Deep divers on fine lines will get you into the strike zone.

All up, March should be another great month to be on the water. I plan to finish operating Fishability Fishing and Enviro Tours in the near future, so if you want to learn to fish Cressbrook or want to redeem gift vouchers, contact me at Fishability Fishing Tours on (07) 4630 8616.


There has been plenty of action at Bjelke lately. Most of the fish are being caught in the deep water between Bass Point and the dam wall. Trolling deep divers for suspended fish holding five to seven metres down in 10 to 15 metres of water has been accounting for many of the fish.

There have been yellowbelly up to 4.5kg as well as bass around the 40cm mark. The Smak 19 has been a great lure in any of the darker colours. A few of these fish are falling to soft plastics as well. It is also worth trying the upper reaches of the dam by trolling medium runners in and out of the creek bed. Baitfishing at the edge of the timber and at The Quarry near the wall has been the best way to tangle with some jew.

The dam is a bit coloured from the low water levels, but it’s still easy to launch and retrieve boats. The dam has been well cleared of obstructions but take extra care around Treasure Island and Lightning Ridge.


The fishing at the dam has been a bit patchy. With the lack of water in other impoundments, water skiers are looking to this lake to have their fun.

If you can put up with the noise of the ski boats, the wall end of the lake is holding some good schools of fish. It’s the usual story – look around in the deep water using your sounder to locate fish. Start looking in water 30 to 40 metres deep. Both trolled deep divers and soft plastics will catch the fish once you find them.

If you take care, you can navigate your way through the Stuart arm timber. Here, some good bass have been taking small spinnerbaits.

About halfway up the dam is the place to try for yellowbelly. Troll lures around the points in four to five metres of water and you should boat a few.


Somerset’s water level is down to around 30%. There is still plenty of water in the main basin and the wall end of the lake is still safe for boating. The water to the north of Kirkleagh is shallow and becoming too dangerous to navigate. In this area, there are still a few yellowbelly in the deeper channel keen enough to eat a medium diving lure.

Yellowbelly can also be caught on trolled lures about halfway along the lake at spots like The Eagle’s Nest, Brad’s Bank and Steep Bank.

The schools of bass have remained in the area between Pelican Point and The Spit. They seem to change their pattern a lot. They can be suspended high in the water column, holding close to the river channel, or suspended in the deeper water. These bass can all be caught using a number of methods. Trolling deep divers, casting plastics, fly and jigs can all work depending on the day. There have even been some reports of quality bass caught by casting spinnerbaits along the bank opposite The Hump.


Windy weather has made fishing Wivenhoe difficult. I haven’t heard any reports of the fish being on the bite. I don’t fish Wivenhoe much because of the electric motor restrictions, but if anyone wants to share some of their recent Wivenhoe trips, I’d love to put them into my next report to keep people better informed. You can reach me by phone or email at --e-mail address hidden--

1) Darren Johnson caught this 45cm Cressbrook bass on a lipless crankbait.

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