Reddy to finish off the summer heat
  |  First Published: March 2017

It’s been a few years since I’ve been able to report that redfin in Blowering Dam are well and truly on the chew. There have been thousands of these tasty critters about lately and although the majority of these fish are fairly small, there are still plenty of big ones out there. And there’s the odd trophy-sized one to keep spirits and expectation levels high.

A lot of these redfin are getting caught by trolling with small hardbodies. Anglers who try something different and try that little bit harder are getting the best results. Trolling suspending hardbodies with a constant stop-start technique is arguably the best way to target the bigger, wiser redfin at Blowering Dam, or anywhere for that matter. Constantly stopping the lure for up to ten seconds at a time can be a big redfin’s undoing. They just can’t let an easy meal sit there for too long, or those pesky schools of little redfin will get in and eat it first, which is why this strategy works so well and has for decades.

The added bonus of using this technique is that when you hook a fish, you can simply leave the other rods to troll in their positions, which gives you a good chance of multiple hook-ups. More often than not, one hooked fish can turn the rest of the school into a feeding frenzy. Lures sitting there in the strike zone get hit, even though the boat and lures haven’t moved. If they don’t hit a lure just sitting there, they’ll often hit the other lures as soon as you start trolling again. There’s no need to troll 50m or more to get your lures down to the desired depth, like you would if you used a floating lure.

Another great little trick for increasing your redfin catch rate is to add a small 1-2” soft plastic or a flashy salt water fly to your main line about a metre or so above your chosen trolling lure. This technique also gives you a great chance of getting a few hook-ups. When you do get two on the one rod, it can make for some interesting battles, especially when they’re both over 40cm. Pulling up after locating a good school and casting to them with lipless crankbaits, soft plastics, blades, vibes, ice jigs or metal spinners is another great way of getting some good numbers of fish under your belt.

Golden perch

Targeting golden perch at Blowering Dam at this time of the year can be quite difficult, particularly during the day. High daytime temperatures push the golden perch into deep water or snags until it cools down late in the day. When the sun goes down, it’s a totally different game. Most fish are rested from a day of sulking in the deep and are out free swimming just about everywhere, particularly in the shallow margins of the dam in search of a good feed. More and more anglers have clued onto this and have started focusing their fishing efforts on night sessions.

These night time feeders can be caught a number of ways. The most common technique is trolling small to medium sized hardbodies and lipless crankbaits. The best technique is to cast with lipless crankbaits, rubber vibes, blades or soft plastics. If you can’t fish at night and have to fish during the day, seek out cool, deep water that has structure of some description.

A golden perch’s favourite structure during the warmer months seems to be standing timber, as this provides shade throughout the day. Fish in these areas are best targeted by jigging with either bait or lures. Slow rolling soft plastics up the sides of standing timber that is either adjacent to a drop off or in 5-15m of water will put you in with a good chance of landing a golden perch.

Trout streams

The trout fishing in our streams just seems to get better and better this season with absolutely insane numbers about this year. I’m lucky enough to have many great streams with in cooee of my home. Most years I catch a couple thousand trout on average. This year’s tallies are going to wipe those stats right off the wall. My other half and I encountered over 1000 trout for the season, way back in early January.

We have been slaying them on everything we have chucked or waved at them, as has everyone else who has put the effort in to get to those more remote areas, where it seems to be almost a fish a cast. My other half’s number one lures have been the Insanity Tackle Bling Spins. All colours have been catching fish and she just changes colours depending on the clarity of the water, but it’s hard to beat the rainbow trout colour for obvious reasons.

I’ve had some amazing sessions as well. Most of my trout stream fishing these days is done with fly rod in hand. Since the beginning of the season, trout have all been willing to rise for dries all day long, and the ones that haven’t have happily taken the nymph dropper that I run on a regular basis. If you haven’t been out trout fishing yet this season, I hope this article has encouraged you to dust off your gear and go.

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