Flyfishing for Australian Murray Cod

Archive for July, 2011

Chilly July

I must admit during winter I enjoy the warmth of my bed, so when Jason suggested an overnight fishing trip, I had my reservations. At the moment we’re experiencing some very chilly nights, followed by heavy frosts. Not your usual pleasant camping scenario. I knew but, after a few fish the cold conditions would hopefully be forgotten.

Working our float boats down through the narrow section it magically opened up to a 1 km long hole. It didn’t take long to work out the fish were very timid, even our favourite and proven flies failed. Pulling up for a yarn, we foraged through our fly boxes for salvation. The answer came in the form of a weed guarded 6/0 fatboy fly. It would be a case of repeated presentations to any likely areas.

Finally when the first cod raced from under a large boulder and engulfed the fly, more out of shock, I clean forgot to set the hook, resulting in a lost fish. It would take until midday before another eventual strike. Jason worked casts across the face of a large submerged bottlebrush, I drifted a 6/0 orange/red fatboy deep into the mallee of twisted limbs from the front. I was prepared for the strike this time and although it was only a small Murray cod, it lifted our spirits.

Upon reaching the end of the hole which looked very fishy indeed, deep water filtered under a series of bottlebrushes. The next fish was a feisty Golden Perch, which had no problems attacking the 150mm long fly. With only a few fish to show for the day’s effort and light fading fast, we headed back to set up camp for the night. A stock pile of timber and a roaring fire was first on the list, hopefully enough to see the night through.

After a good feed and a few laughs, we decided to call it a night, but upon rolling out my swag, I soon realised somehow I’d forgotten my -10 sleeping bag, I knew it was going to be a long night. The next morning the ground was a blanket of glittery white frost, nothing a strong cup of coffee and brekkie couldn’t fix. (Finding out later that night was -4)

Heading back to the river, we were keen to give the far end of the hole a thorough workout. The fish had shut down solid, but once again the tail of the pool produced results, Jason was rewarded with a nice Murray cod, pulled from under a huge log. The fly was a prototype, a mutated twin rattling clouser.

Battling through the shallow water and bottlebrush limbs, we explored further downstream. It looked ideal cod holding water, which was soon confirmed when I landed another small cod, this time on a black 6/0 fatboy.

It was a worthwhile trip and definitely an area we’ll be exploring more, but only after it warms up.             Nick