Flyfishing for Australian Murray Cod

Moon River

Slowly the sun fades below the river gums, its harsh light replaced by an eerie darkness. The occasional squawk from a late roosting cockatoo can be heard as it settles for the night. In the distance a farmer’s dog is letting his owner know its tucker time with a series of vivacious barks. Even the hum of a single but annoying mosquito seems amplified as it searches for blood.

The inadequacy of human eyesight soon becomes apparent and without the aid of a headlamp, life becomes clumsy. Salvation from embarrassment comes soon enough in the form of a rising moon.

Finally casts start to search for hungry cod, life is good right about now.

A different dimension exists when fishing at night, senses such as hearing are heightened to new levels. Elevated heart rate caused from unfamiliar sounds and cod detonations is certainly guaranteed.

If your easily spooked or of a nervous nature, fishing under the stars mightn’t be for you, since many creatures forage and flocks by the river banks. My advice is to man up and try it.


*Whether fishing from canoe, kayak, or float boat, store extra clothing in a dry bag. I like to pack polypropylene pants, jumper, beanie and a buff to cover exposed skin in the cooler months. Keeping a spare set of clothes in your vehicle is also a good practise, just in case of an emergency.

*Using a LED headlamp that features a red lamp to alleviate being swarmed by insects.

*I rely on three types of poppers, all feature weedguards and don’t be afraid to experiment with trailing and tandem hooks. 1) Loud bloopy style featuring large cup face. 2) Slider type, eg Big poppa. 3) Gurgler style.

*Concentrate casts towards structure, in particular weed edges. I find the head and tails of the pools to be the most productive areas.

*Anywhere from half-moon onwards is an ideal time to fish at night, I like to be on the water at least a few hours before the moon comes up. Alternate from the shaded side of river to moonlit to find if the fish have a preference.

*Mix up retrieves from a quick pace to slow steady strips with long pauses, most times the strike will come within the first metre.          Nick

2 responses

  1. Rob Dean

    Yet another great insight into the finer details of Chasing Cod on Fly awesome stuff, yet to get my first on fly but I am sure it is only a cast away.

    April 27, 2016 at 6:02 pm

  2. Great post Nick. I always enjoy reading your posts and photos. Keep em coming 🙂

    April 27, 2016 at 8:22 pm

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