Not a lot has been happening recently. The vagaries of the weather and swell, combined with the coming of winter, seemed to have the effect of nullifying any interest in getting wet. Recently I decided it was time for a red-eye run.
The big chill has set in around the Central Highlands Region of Victoria, including Ballarat. Freezing cold, wet and windy days have set in. Snow is coming down to low levels – that’s all part of the deal living in and around Ballarat during the winter months.
Cold weather is here and that’s no reason to pack away the gear. If you want to target a trophy-sized fish locally, the next few months are prime time!
We are now in the grip of winter and the temperature is decidedly chilly. The salmonoid fishing is now in full swing. Just pick a day where the wind isn’t blowing a dog off its chain and the rain has held off. Believe it or not there have been plenty of benign days lately. It’s simply a matter of rugging up and getting out there on the water.
The Hopkins River last month was experiencing a run of winter mulloway, and it appears that plenty of fish are being caught using a wide variety of methods and tactics.
The last month has seen an increase of trout and larger redfin activity out west while the salmon appear to be moving into the white water down the Surf Coast with a little more frequency.
We are well into winter and, boy, the calamari have decided that this is their time to shine. The amount of squid reports over the last month has been nothing short of insane! They really provide a legitimate target when everything else winds down for the cooler months.
The winter blues have begun to settle in with frequent days of horrid weather. Fishing has still been reasonably productive with large schools of silver trevally haunting the tidal channel in search of white bait and other food sources. The jetties and deep channels are holding schooling bream, but locating them has been hard. Use a quality depth sounder to help locate the schools.
With cold water and cold, short days the bay is still offering some great fishing options for July. Over the coming weeks it really becomes a matter of getting onto the fish when the weather allows you to get on the water. While the timeframes may be a bit more limiting, on the upside the short sessions in the good weather windows tend to produce great fishing.
The lakes are cold and the big reds are on the chew. Trout are smelting, thus giving away their location and making your lure or fly selection that bit easier. Stealth is the key to winter fishing these great lakes, so leave the radio at home, keep the outboard off and go electric. Take the time to drift into your desired spot.
The trout population has taken a fair hit in recent years with all the Murray cod stockings, but this year’s trout breeding cycle has started off very brilliantly, with some great days fishing being had by persistent and avid anglers.
The cold has set in and there has been an emergence of land-based anglers along the peninsula. The beauty of land-based fishing opportunities along the Mornington Peninsula, in the cold weather, is that we can still catch good numbers and, as soon as it gets too cold or wet, we can hop straight back in the car and go find a warm fireplace and hot coffee!
The waterways around the Bendigo region have experienced a significant change in conditions over the last couple of months. Bendigo received record rainfall for April. This resulted in some significant inflows into local river systems and the water clarity deteriorated in these systems.
I wasn’t wrong when I said last month that the trout season was going to be a cracker, with reports coming in thick and fast and punters taking advantage of the sheer numbers that are up and about and on the chew.
Our estuary system rebounded and is fishing well again. Plenty of bream are being taken along the Snowy River all the way up to the highway bridge at Orbost, making the fishing platforms that have been erected prime fishing spots along both sides of the river all the way down to the Marlo Road causeway turn-off.
July sees the cold of winter keeping some anglers off the water, but for those who are keen enough to get out and brave that cold weather, the rewards can be fantastic.
It’s July and it’s cold – damn cold. The state has shut down to a certain degree as the weather makes life go from hard to real hard. This doesn’t mean that we have to run the white flag up and completely give up. While July has a bit of a bet on with June about who is the coldest and most miserable, we can take comfort in the fact that daylight hours are increasing. They will continue to do so until October 1.
A sensational bout of late autumn weather meant anglers had plenty of different species to target before winter. Days of northerly winds created ideal conditions for targeting fish off the local beaches and there have been plenty of salmon around to keep everyone happy.
The stream trout season is now closed and will re-open on the first weekend of September, leaving local anglers with few stream options.
Things have gone a little quiet along the local beaches lately with only a few small salmon being caught. There have been some very decent gummies caught off Johanna Beach at night; one local hooked into two gummies around 5ft long in the space of an hour. He was using a fresh salmon fillet on a running sinker rig.
Winter time on Phillip Island means extra jumpers, the occasional need for a rain coat and a little bit of thought when it comes to your fishing. It also requires a change to how you fish. Look more at the tides and wind direction. It’s colder at this time of the year and no one wants to be standing on a beach or sitting in a boat for hours, so concentrate more on that hour or two before and after the tides.
The cold and dull days of winter that seemed so far away for so long, especially over the past few months, have well and truly set in on the bay.
It’s a bream jackpot! The last four weeks have been extraordinary when it comes to luring up big black bream and the action should get even better as we get further into winter. There have been no significant rain events of late, and that means clean salty water has filled Lake Wellington and brought a whole heap of fish with it.
Sick of your mate hooking all of the bream on lures? It has happened to all of us. You spend a day on the water with a good mate and they releases a whole swag of bream. Meanwhile, you have a terrible day and land a few little ones, or maybe nothing at all! Even worse, you use the same lures, identical rods and even the same length and size of leader.
Catching Australian salmon might not be everyone’s cup of tea, especially when they are predominantly caught in winter along the surf beaches of Victoria. Each year before the onset of winter, huge schools of salmon make their way into our bays and inlets before heading out to infiltrate the surf zones.
The fishing has been very quiet over the past month and that’s no surprise. Winter months are usually the quietest time for our region.
Despite the wintery blast we have been blanketed with these past few weeks, there has been no chance of the fishing slowing up. The surf fishing scene has well and truly kicked into high gear now with salmon invading the surf beaches right along the coast from Phillip Island to the Ninety Mile Beach.
The gritty days of winter are upon us, with sideways rain and wind that seems like it will never pass. While this is what we can expect in Melbourne, for the short while ahead, the common phrase “you can’t catch fish on the couch” could not ring truer.
July is a tough time of the year to fish in North East Victoria. There are still fishing options available for the keen Murray cod and redfin angler, however, trout really dominate the fishing during July for a number of reasons.
The Pelican Waters canals are fishing well for queenfish, along with bigeye trevally and small GTs. Anglers are also encountering schools of kalekale trevally, which come on in the cooler months.
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