Scorching heat waves for several days followed by a cool southerly and then the cycle repeats all over again. For anglers knowing what the weather has, is, and will be doing will help you plan and achieve best results and fish in comfort too-bites seem to take longer when you are sweltering and not enjoying yourself.
Up in the Snowies there is some great bait lure and fly fishing to be had, especially in Lake Jindabyne. During a heat wave fish at night, or wait for a cooler change. If your only time off is during a hot day fish dee. Trollers are using leadcore and downriggers-local guide Steve Williamson says 25 to 35 feet is best. Ditto with fly-hit the edges when it's cool and/or dark and fish down deep if it's not.
There is always the exception should you be very lucky or have time to move around and find something rare. For example a cool water spring can have fish in close where it would usually be too warm. One of the competitors of in the 1999 world fly fishing championships got lucky and drew a beat that had fish in close in a very large shallow bay less than a meter deep during a summer heat wave: incredible stuff, I will never forget filming it!
Bait anglers are more typically playing the odds in popular spots by fishing deep if it is hot, eg artificial TROUT baits fished deep on a running sinker rig. Or use mudeyes when the sun is weak or at night.
Anglers fishing the rivers and streams in the snowies will also fare better looking for shady trout lairs, or cooler periods. On the native fish scene, Dean Brind from Burrinjuck Waters State Park reports some of the best fishing for meter plus cod in some time, with 5 over a meter in the last 5 weeks, including another 1.2 meter specimen.
They are by no means easy, but what a challenge and you will get golden perch along the way. Expect another good period bite when the heat waves taper off late in summer/autumn.
Anglers specifically targeting golden perch have done well on bibbless minnows, such as Rapala rippin raps, and baits such as worms, yabbys and shrimps. Keen perch anglers might like to try their hand at the up-coming championships on the lake, more details at www.yellowbellychampionships.com/
Redfin are responding to the same techniques as golden perch, but of course smaller sized lures and baits, along with small soft plastics are good once a school of redfin is found-and note that they will start to school more heavily in a month or so when the weather cools.
In most instances silver perch and trout in Burrinjuck have been comparatively quite.
On the coast, the fishing has fired in one spot one day, and been quite the next, but with warm oceanic water now moving in and expected to be more widespread in coming weeks, ocean and estuary temps and water clarity will hopefully stabilize and the fishing will be a bit more predictable.
Anglers stumbling across the a good patch of fish, or those that are blessed to have enough time to make sure they find them have been reporting some great results.
Mark Bullock fished near the George Bass Drive bridge on Candlagan Creek, and caught a fantastic bag of bream and some flattys. He tells me he plans to get a kayak and see how big the fish are in lesser fished spots.
On the rock and inshore scene anglers getting good water moving in have been going well with various reef species and an increasing amount of bonito and frigate mackerel.
The very occasional reports of Marlin in close to the rocks and with a bit of luck the better numbers of small marlin in close on the NSW North Coast will make it down our way soon.
See you on the water