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Lake Eppalock - Bendigo. Victoria

LAKE Eppalock is located a short distance from the historical gold mining town of Bendigo in central Victoria. This large lake is a storage for Bendigo's drinking water but boating, wading and swimming are permitted.
It is a popular ski boat destination due to its large open expanses of water and quality boat ramps.
Lake Eppalock is also home to a healthy mixed fishery that includes massive golden perch (max 9kg, av. 1kg), redfin (max. 2 kg av.800g) with isolated captures of trout (max. 2.3kg av. 500g) and Murray cod (max 8kg, av. 3kg).

Local fishing writer Roger Dark holds a nice golden perch taken on a lure cast around the weeds.
Local fishing writer Roger Dark holds a nice golden perch taken on a lure cast around the weeds.
(Click on image to view larger version)

The lake also has some very large carp that have been taken on lures, but respond best to baits such as corn kernels.
Boat ramps are located all over this massive lake and there are several caravan parks also.
Best bait for golden perch and redfin is small yabbies followed by live minnow and scrub worms. Murray cod are more a chance capture than a targettable population and are more often caught on lures.
There are some trout in the lake and these respond well to lure trolling and mudeye fishing in the cooler months- especially up the many river arms of the lake. When the lake is full and weir overflows, the tailrace below the wall can be sensational for trout in the cooler months.
Both redfin and golden perch respond well to trolled deep diving lures such as ultra-deep Merlins, McGraths, Deception Shrimp and the Mann's 15+ range.
The lakes resident redfin population are also suckers for small minnow styled lures trolled in the shallows and around the weed beds.
Try brighter versions of Merlins, Min Mins, Rapala and Attack minnows and you should find a few reddies.
There are a few bays and inlets that are dotted with trees and this is the best place to start looking for a fish. Not only to escape from the skiers, but the fish prefer the safety of cover the trees provide.
This is a good area to have a go at casting lures around the stumps and weed beds. Golden perch will hang close to the weeds in quite shallow water.
Steep rocky points are also a good place to flick a lure as fish use these as ambush points.
The water can discolour quickly after heavy rain, but is relatively clear for most of the year. During periods of low water level, there are some stumps that become a boating hazard and local knowledge should be sought.

Neil Slater with a XOS carp
Click on image to view a larger version

Neil Slater

Lake Eppalock Facts & Figures
River System Campaspe River
Tributaries Coliban River, Wild Duck Creek, Mt Ida Creek
Length 700 meters
Height 47 meters
Crest Width 10 meters
Construction Material Earth & rock fill
Full Supply Level (FSL) 193.910 m (AHD)
Capacity at FSL 312 000 Megalitres
Catchment Area 2130 square kilometers
Annual Rainfall 550 mm

Related Links:
Lake Eppalock Map pdf Format
Water Level Link Goulburn - Murray Water
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Lake Eppalock Map

Copyright © 2004 Neil Slater. Sweetwater Fishing Australia