With the Murray cod season opening in less than 2 weeks, now is the time to stock up and get yourself prepared! Make sure to check over all of your lures, hooks, leader and terminal gear along with your rod guides and main lines. You don't want to lose that trophy fish through something that could have been prevented!

Murray cod season looks to be a good season this year with river levels slightly down and clearer at the moment. Most of the main lakes such as Eildon, Mulwala and Nillahcootie are looking good also. Customer Kevin fished a mate's dam just recently where there were rumored to be a couple of decent cod, and he found out exactly what sort of cod were in there! Kevin's fish ate a small Jitterbug surface paddler.

 

Even though this time of year isn't really known as being the most productive time of year to target Murray cod, they can still be caught if you're willing to brave the cold and put in the time. During the cooler months of the year Murray cod cod generally slow their metabolism down and don't actively hunt as much, but they can still be caught. Between the lure vs bait debate, lures come into their own for triggering a strike from a cod during cooler weather. Even though they might not actually want to hunt for food, by repeatedly casting or running a lure over a likely looking snag you can tap into the cod's 'territorial' nature - whereas they are virtually annoyed into striking the lure.

Staff member Ian took his kayak up to Eildon just recently in search of a big winter cod. Ian spent a bit of time looking for likely cod water and then strategically worked these areas over to be sure he maximized his chances. After a long day on the water, Ian managed to land a 93cm 'barrel' cod from around the Frasers area. Ian landed the fish on a size 1 Stumpjumper in a redfin pattern.


Customer Ivan also had a taste of Eildon native fishing recently. Ivan caught this nice little cod from the timber in the background on a purple Yakamito lure. Fish of this size are very common to catch in the lake this days, and will only get bigger with plenty of prey items available for them. 

 


Melbourne's local freshwater fishing has been good over the past month, as we've finally gotten some rain! Many of the creeks have been running low, and the water storage dams have also been down on capacity. We have however started t o get some of our winter rain which has breathed a bit of life back into the system, and in the annual timeline of a trout - prompted them to start their spawn run. Many of the larger rivers around the region have seen congregations of fish pushing their way up to their spawning grounds. While these fish at times can be annoyingly frustrating to try and catch, they will swat a precisely placed lure on their way up river.


Many of the trout rivers within 2 hours drive from the CBD have been producing fish of late as well. The Goulburn river has been running at a low environmental level which if anything has concentrated the fish a bit more. Rainbows to around 800g have been the norm for bait, lure and fly anglers lately. The smaller streams such as Rubicon, Acheron and also the Yarra have been producing fish for all methods too. Straight after a solid downpour a small bunch of scrubbies or troutworms drifted down river is a pretty good way to go. For the lure angler, hardbodies in the 60mm size range are perfect, with high flash golds and aggressive colour schemes working well. Just a reminder that the 2016 trout season closes at midnight on Monday 13th June, up until midnight Friday 2nd September. Trout can still be taken in designated 'sea run' streams and lakes, with all details being found through the following link:

http://agriculture.vic.gov.au/fisheries/recreational-fishing/recreational-fishing-guide/catch-limits-and-closed-seasons/freshwater-scale-fish/rainbow-trout/trout-and-salmon-regulations




 

 

The trout action has been good in many of the local streams and rivers recently. With Melbourne's cold and windy weather at least fishing in some of the rivers you can get a bit of a break from the wind, and sometimes the rain too. Customers Jinsu and Jordan have been fishing local rivers near Noojee in search of a few spotted river wrigglers.

Jinsu has found that soft plastics like Gulp Minnows and turtleback worms have been effective in dirtied up pools when visibility is low, while Jordan has been catching fish on a mixture of flies. Jordan has been alternating between indicator nymph fishing and also wet flies like wooly buggers and the like. Between both of these techniques the guys have been pulling some nice sized browns for the streams.

Up around the Eildon region, customer Vince has also been getting a few trout here and there. Vince has found that the most effective lures for him recently have been small spinner like the Blue Fox Vibrax, in plated gold and also brass colour. With a bit of colour to the water he has found the trout have been able to find these lures a bit easier. 

 

 

This time of the year coming into winter can be the best time to specifically target large Murray cod. Many of the larger fish feed up heavily before going into a spawning aggregation in late winter. Smaller fish can also be caught during this time, but the largest fish seem to be as active as ever. Fishing deeper sections of the rivers and lakes can also be a very good way of connecting with a big fish, as this deeper water remains at a more stable temperature and the fish move about happily. Places like Eildon are worth a shot at the moment, along with deeper river channel sections of Mulwala and the Murray.

Customer recently fished the Murray river up near Tocumwal in search of a big cod. He was persistent with casting lures from a drifting boat and managed to nail this awesome fish on a black and red skirted spinnerbait below the bridge section near town. A cracking fish around the metre mark, not a bad way to spend a winter's day.

 

 

Trout reports have still been good over the last week, and should only fire up a bit more with recent rain around Melbourne. In some areas the larger brown trout will start to school up in preparation for winter spawning migrations, so the use of larger more aggressive lure patterns will evoke a territorial response from these fish. Customer Josh has been out around the ranges in search of a bigger trout and came up good with this cracker. Josh was using a spawn trout pattern hardbody when he caught this nice brown. 

Customers Jordan and Morgan have also been fishing the Eildon area over the last week with the fly rods and they have again found some nice little stream fish. The local trout have been taking both dry and nymph patterns in various sections of water. Morgan has been tying up his own patterns to represent the local nymph population and they have been dynamite. The quality trout fishing should continue right up until the seasons close in June.

 

With Winter starting to approach many anglers start to dismiss Murray cod as a cold-water option. This is not actually the case, as Autumn can often provide some of the best fishing for cod throughout the whole year. Murray cod will generally feed up a bit more heavily in Autumn in preparation for late Winter spawning, and anglers can make the most of this.

Customer Tuan fished around the Goulburn Weir recently in search of Murray cod, and he managed some nice fish to 70cm on bardi grubs. Tuan found late afternoon was the most productive time.

Around the Eildon region the trout have started to fire up with the cooler weather and rise in water levels. The lake itself has been fishing well for school sized fish on a variety of lures, as customers Andrew and Rene found out. Andrew and Rene fished the lake in the boat over the Easter weekend and landed a good number of school size fish in the 400g size range. Tassie Devils run off a flatline worked the best around the Big River area. The rivers themselves have been fishing well for trout also, with the Goulburn still producing good sized fish amongst the high levels.

Jason from Bullet Lures has been fishing the Goulburn recently, and he has found some nice sized fish.

Jason has been catching both rainbow and brown trout or various colour Bullet Lures recently, with a new 5cm prototype smashing the trout as well.

 

In some of the smaller rivers and streams around Eildon, customers Morgan and Jordan have been finding good numbers of fish on the fly. Both Jordan and Morgan have been fishing a mixture of dry and nymph patterns, with fish taking both. A slight lean towards the nymph patterns lately will continue into the Winter months, especially weighted or beadheaded style nymphs.

 

Some of the fish from the same streams have a variety of markings, from rainbows with blue parr spots right through to dark olive backs and crimson cheeks - to browns with similar brown 'finger spots' right through to almost black backs and leopard spots with patchy red markings.

 

 

The Goulburn River has been good to anglers fishing lures along the undercut edges recently, as it is still running quite high. Baitfishing in fast flows has still been quite tough, but lure casting has been good. Customer Mick ventured up to the Goulburn after some lure advice in the shop, and in a quiet afternoon's fishing Mick managed to land 2 stream sized rainbows and also a thumper brown at 1.8kg. Mick found that a couple of the lures recommended worked a treat and got his a couple of fish.

Not too far out of the suburbs customer Jordan has been at it again, catching local stream browns on the fly. Jordan has been fishing small creeks and has found plenty of reasonable sized fish waiting in runs and pockets. Jordan has found a mixture of both nymph and dries to be effective. Small dark coloured nymphs in size 14 have been good, while Parachute Adams and Wulff varieties have been taking fish sipping off the surface.

Customer Morgan fished in a couple of smaller rivers up around Healesville over the weekend with his girlfriend after a couple of trout. The pair fly fished the rivers using both nymphs and dries and caught a few average stream fish on both presentations.

A bit closer to home staff member Don took his twins down to a local dam after work for a flick with redfin in mind. His twin boys have been taught to cast and work a lure, and pretty much bring the fish in all by themselves. Don, being the expert at rigging plastics straight - made sure the lures were swimming correctly for them and off they went. Young Jackson was pretty happy with himself here posing with a chunky redfin.

Customer Adrian had another fish during the week down at Devilsbend Reservoir in search of some bigger redfin. Adrian found a small patch of surface activity around some snags on the bank and had a few casts with a shallow twitchbait, and pulled out some nice fat redfin. He caught a few in the same spot then continued walking to catch more in another area.

 

 

The local trout fishing in the region has been ok this week with most of the larger rivers producing better than small creeks. Smaller waters in some areas are running low and clear which can make catching trout a bit harder. Smaller streams with increased clarity and low levels should be fished stealthy with light lines to capitalize on results from flighty fish. Some of the larger rivers in South Gippsland like the Latrobe have been steadily producing trout, as they are generally more discoloured and the fish have been less spooky. The main section of the Latrobe which flows through Noojee has been good for trout to 300g on troutworms and also small bladed spinners like Celtas and Vibrax models.

Up around the Eildon region, pretty much every river except for the Goulburn has been running low and clear. The Goulburn has been running at around 5000 - 9000 ML/day for a while, as it is diverted downstream for irrigation purposes. It is un-wadable in most sections and very deep along most edges, with flooded grass and backwaters producing a few fish. Staff member Dylan fished the river earlier this week with a couple of mates in search of a few margin trout and although only a short session a few nice fish were seen, fish to 3lb were polaroided but most spooked early on. One small brown around 350g took a liking a small beadheaded nymph along a slow edge.

 

 

The local freshwater fishing has been good, with plenty of trout and redfin to be caught without driving too far. Local dams and urban lakes have been producing small trout and redfin for lure anglers. Staff member Don fished a couple of local dams with his two young twins in search of a few reddies on light spin gear and the boys caught some nice ones on small soft plastics. Even Dad got into the action catching a few on small natural coloured single tail grubs fished around weed growth. Customer Adrian fished down on the Peninsula targeting a few redfin and trout also, with warm conditions and high insect activity ideal for surface feeding redfin. Adrian caught redfin up to 30cm on small soft plastics and also on surface floating and shallow running minnows.

Just inside the Yarra valley customer Morgan has been catching a few nice trout on the fly gear. Morgan has had some mixed fishing with perfect conditions and no activity, and then average conditions with plenty of feeding fish around. Most of the trout in the Yarra have been browns in the 25cm size range, with the odd bigger fish hanging around also. Morgan has been tying some dry flies and one of his orange spinner variants called the 'McTaggert' has been good, along with a #12 'Dad's Favourite'.

Further back down the river around Templestowe, customer San caught a nice sized Murray Cod while bait fishing this section of the river. Customers Cam and Dan took the fly rods just over the other side of the Yarra ranges to some small streams for some nymph fishing in pocket water. The boys caught a few rainbow and brown trout, with #10 and #12 dark coloured bead headed nymphs doing the trick when fished under an indicator.

Staff member Dylan fished with customer Jordan over the weekend in the small streams near Eildon using dry flies and nymphs, with plenty of small fish from 4" through to around 1lb present. A mixture of shallow runs and pocket water were fished, with the nymph set shallow under the indicator proving to be the most effective tactic for targeting small pockets and runs.