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Fishing the crater lakes, south west vic

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Fishing the crater lakes, south west vic

Postby peatop » 07 Apr 2018, 19:33

I've been reading about bullen marri and the other lakes around camperdown, since reading about Jordo catching his chanook salmon there. After reading further reports the word downrigger keeps coming up, i think i have a downrigger design sorted however what weight should i use and how far do i let the lure/bait out from the downrigger? I will mainly be trolling with lures, so any advice on lures would also be a great help.
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Re: Fishing the crater lakes, south west vic

Postby 4liters » 07 Apr 2018, 20:56

White tassie devils. Pink for trout and reddies
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Re: Fishing the crater lakes, south west vic

Postby shane » 07 Apr 2018, 21:41

It depends on the time of year as to whether a downrigger is needed or not. In summer the water temperatures rise and the lakes temperature /oxygen gradient can turn over causing the fish to hold in deeper water (12-25m). In this case you need a down rigger or a decent sinker on your line to get down to the fish. A downrigger is good for precisely setting the depth but I've done just as well with a sinker on a rubber band a couple of meters up from the lure. With the downrigger the lure is set 2-10m behind the downrigger bomb (typically 3lb). People fishing the lake a lot will also use dodgers or cow bells/ford fenders up from the lure to attract the fish in.

As we move into the colder weather the fish will tend to be closer to the surface. In this case flat lining lures, particularly early in the day does very well. I'm usually running one on the surface and one deep and changing around depending on what the fish are doing. Tassie devils and minnows both work. Bullen Merri also has a population of very big Australian Bass and I've caught these on very deep diving small hard bodies.

Bullen Merri drops off into deep water quickly so here it's either trolling flat near the edges of going out a bit further and deeper. Purrumbete has an edge fringe of shallow weed beds (particularly on the east and south) so trolling or casting can be done here with shallower lures. Elingamite is all shallow and assuming you can get out through the mud then it's just trolling shallow lures in the centre where it's deep enough away from weed.
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Re: Fishing the crater lakes, south west vic

Postby Jordo » 08 Apr 2018, 10:39

I've managed a couple Chinook down that way now. I have had the most success on deep diving minnow lures with a sinker locked onto the line about 1.5m up from the lure. I always try and use lures with lots of white on them. I have used downriggers, but found the sinker technique effective enough with less hassle. This is all based on my experiences at Bullen Merri, I haven't fished the other crater lakes. Chinook are a fun fish and are good eating, good luck.
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Re: Fishing the crater lakes, south west vic

Postby westy » 08 Apr 2018, 11:10

l always try to fish these lakes on the way to portland, nearly always find the cooler weather better, from bust ups on the surface bait fish to fishing pilchards just on a hook allowing to run in the deeper parts.
lures that work for me are trout patterns and smelt patterns , pretty much fished the same as the rest of the guys here, though yet to catch one of those Bass :evilgrin:. Just as a side note, last trip to Eildon saw me catch 3x salmon on a 100mm rapala in gold and black cast to bust ups on the surface, which surprised me as l didnt know Eildon had salmon :o
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Re: Fishing the crater lakes, south west vic

Postby bunyip » 08 Apr 2018, 12:20

I wasn't aware of salmon in Eildon but escapees from different farms will find their way down, I have caught Atlantic Salmon in Eildon that originated from a farm on the Goulburn, it flooded a few years ago and the population got out and now breed.
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Re: Fishing the crater lakes, south west vic

Postby peatop » 08 Apr 2018, 14:57

Wow, thanks agian guys, i haven't fished real fresh water since i was in school, back then it was mostly when camping somewhere on the Latrobe river, although i also fished eilden and several parts of the goulburn, from memory carp was my only catch back then, oh anther good place was the yarra up around reefton, where my school camp was. Anyway back on the point of this thread, given i live around the geelong area I've been thinking about where to do some inland fishing and given i know the camperdown area really well, the crater lakes seems to be the better spot to get this back into practice.
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Re: Fishing the crater lakes, south west vic

Postby Windknot » 09 Apr 2018, 10:51

In Purrumbeet there is (or was) a ring of weed that extends out from the bank, if you troll around close to this weed so your lure is very close to the weed, you might catch a few. I haven't fished there for decades, but it used to work quite well.

I have also used downriggers there and at Bullen Merri. They can be very effective. I would just cruise around looking at the sounder and when I saw schools of fish I would note the depth they were holding at. I would then lower the bomb to that depth and then troll around them or even through them. Back in those days we used spoon lures and tassie devils, but if I was doing it today, I'd like to try a shallow running bibbed lure behind the bomb.
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