Picture-perfect Winter
  |  First Published: July 2009

Lately the weather has been perfect one day, and then perfect again the next, with clear, windless days making the lake as smooth as ice from dawn until dusk.

And with no substantial rain for the past two years, the lake is clearer than I have ever seen it.

Throughout the Bottom Lake you can see the bottom in up to 4m of water. This has resulted in a bloom of a white style of cunjevoi.

Offshore the water is also crystal clear and cold.

Along the beaches, salmon are in full swing with good numbers of fish to 2kg being caught anywhere from the entrance down to Bastion Point.

Salmon are also being caught along Tip Beach down to the Betka River mouth.

The action should only get better over the coming months.

Not only are salmon a great sportfish, they also taste great on the plate, especially when they are smoked.

Bleed the fish first and then fillet it, leaving the scales on. Finally, be sure to put the salmon in the smoker scales down, which will help to keep the moisture in.

The past month has seen a number of boats heading offshore chasing a feed of gummy sharks and flathead.

They have had little to report with the water too cold for the flathead and the gummy sharks seem to have disappeared.

Those fishing with lures in the lakes and rivers have had more success.

Using light leaders, lures have been disappearing in the mouths of rampaging tailor.

Jake De Bousherville, a regular client, had the good fortune to land a great tailor that put on a stubborn fight in the Top Lake.

Jake, his brother Jamie and their dad, Guy, would have to be some of the keenest anglers around.

Meeting them early ready for a day of fishing, I was greeted with the sight of Jamie having his photo taken with a 40cm yellowfin bream caught off the jetty while they were waiting for me to arrive.

Flathead are still being caught in both the lakes and rivers, but the fish are scattered, unlike past years when they formed big schools over the winter.

Fishing for bream with lures was really starting to fire up, but excessive lure fishing pressure has really shut the fish down.

At the moment, whether fishing with bait or lures, regular anglers are noticing that you need to be on the water at first light to get the bite.

By about 9.30am you may as well head home for a game of golf, as the next bite tends not to be until just before dark. Those fishing at night are also having good results.

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