High rivers, dirty water
  |  First Published: February 2010

It would be great to say the fishing has been full-on along the Murray with stacks of big cod keeping rods bent and anglers busy – but that would be wrong! The action over the past month on the big fish front has been as quiet as I have ever heard of.

High rivers and dirty water have put paid to the consistent big fish action that these local waters are renowned for.

Combine this with 6 billion doof boats and temperatures climbing into the mid 40°s and you begin to get a picture of Summer cod fishing along the Murray River.

Small windows of opportunity were available at first light, when the boat-churned waters were at their clearest and the ‘look-at-me’ brigade were still fast asleep.

At the opposite end of the day, darkness ushers in other opportunities but even these have been few and far between in the dirty water.

While the pool water has been slow those smart enough to avoid these areas and head up river to the shallow, current-rich sections have found a few fish and far less boat traffic.

Cod and golden perch have been consistent along the Murray at Swan Hill, Boundary Bend and below the weir at Euston through to the Hattah-Kulkyne National Park.

Other rivers producing a few fish have included the Murrumbidgee at Balranald and the Wakool at and above Kyalite.

The Edward near Moulamein, too, has produced great catches of small cod on bait with as many as 20 fish a session.

It’s great to see such good numbers of smaller fish in many of the above locations and it’s reassuring that there will be plenty of good fish around in years to come.


So what will the fishing be like over the coming month?

I expect that if the river remains high and dirty and the weather hot, it will be nothing short of hard work.

The Murray from Swan Hill to Wentworth would be a good option as it clears, especially for those using lures.

Other influences that will come into play will depend on how much of the Queensland floodwaters are allowed past the Menindee Lakes and into the Murray River.

If we experience good flows down the Darling, the fishing below Wentworth to the South Australian border in the Murray will most certainly be a dirty water option.

In saying that, there is still plenty of water to wet a line above the junction of these two rivers.

And every lock from here back to Swan Hill holds no shortage of big fish.

The best-case scenario is that the weather will cool and the river will clear.

Until then, you could do worse than to drown a grub or two in the shade of a tree in the hopes of bagging a nice cod.

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