Lake Mulwala Hotspots by Ian Stead
is some helpful information for newcomers to this magnificent
waterway. A new waterway can be daunting at the best of times
and Lake Mulwala can be extra challenging to the Angler with out
much experience on this waterway and even anglers that have fished
this area a few times should gain a little more heads-up for their
future trips. The information below is from personal experience
we've had our selves and from our close fishing friends. Use it
as a guide only as there is no substitute for personal experience
and there are far more places to investigate and try throughout
this whole waterway. There are many channels in the lake and all
will produce fish so don't be shy and investigate the possibilities
for yourself. As we do not do a lot of bait fishing we apologise
for the lack of it here.
WARNING - A word of warning first to all who use the lake. The
wind can play a big factor in your personal safety and enjoyment
so be prepared and ensure your boat is adequate for such conditions.
Sometimes the wind can spring up quite rapidly and a 1m chop can
be found in some parts of the lake so beware. (Note: If the wind
becomes too strong, try fishing on the Murray River below the
weir wall or the Bundelong area as you will often find protection
from the wind and still enjoy your day.) And another word of warning
for all to adhere to is to take care in the non-designated water-ski
areas as there are literally thousands of tree stumps just below
the waterline. Even when traveling along some of the marked channels
you can lose you way a bit and find your self running over these
stumps and doing some very expensive damage to your boat or motor.
So until you are familiar with these areas take care.
Click on map for printable version
1. - A great spot to take the family for a picnic and throw
a line in for the kids along one of the grassed reserves. It's
the best spot to introduce the kids to fishing and see a Murray
Cod for the first time. Rig with a running sinker up to a swivel
with a 40cm leader and attached a 2/0 hook and put on a few worms.
This is the exact spot where both my family and myself were introduced
to our first Murray Cod some years ago. Weed can be a problem
sometimes so try not to move your rig once cast out and you should
enjoy the day. It's a good area to spend some quality family time
and still have a fish and watch your kids enjoy the benefits of
2. -Unfortunately the Mulwala channel has been fenced off
to all public use and is no longer a great legal fishing area.
The powers to be (Murray-Goulburn Water) have apparently made
the area safer for all visitors by locking them out. Another public
area we all get locked out of.
3. -This channel is a very good trolling area for Murray
Cod, it's one of the straightest and hence the easiest to troll
your lures as you can be confident of keeping your lure running
along the drop off where the large snags are from the original
channel. Stick to the outer edges and you will increase your chances
4. - This area is known as Kieffen's Reserve and the shallows
that surround it are laden with large hollowed logs and tons of
sunken timber. This is the Murray Cod's nursery grounds and their
evening playground as they are mainly active here when the light
is low or dark. Due to its shallow nature and being stacked with
timber the best way to fish this area is the last hours of daylight
and into the night using surface lures. Summer & Autumn bring
beautiful balmy twilight evenings with no breeze and moonlit nights;
these are the best times to enjoy this form of angling. But be
warned, a strike on a surface lure by a Murray Cod can scare the
pants off you so make sure the ticker (heart) is in good order.
Another productive technique is to use Spinnerbaits and cast into
the mass of timber piles. Because of their design, Spinnerbaits
can be cast right in front of a snag and they drop immediately
into the strike zone and then they can be retrieved slowly and
climb and drop over any type of timber. Their success is due to
them always staying in the strike zone and their resistance to
snagging. Also, don't be frightened to try some shallow diving
lures as well but you will need to use care and patients walking
them through the snags and have good lure retrievers and extraction
techniques. Just be aware that access to this area is limited
if you plan on fishing this area into the night. Local knowledge
of the open channels is essential as there is a lot of water to
navigate to get back to the boat ramps and much of it is lined
with tree stumps with many of the just below the surface. There
is a sandy boat ramp at Kieffins reserve but a 4wd would be required.
It is also the only area on the lake that you can camp which is
a very common sense option if you want to target this area to
fish, particularly surface luring for Cod when conditions are
5. -The Woods. As the name suggests it is an area that
is basically a partly submerged ghost forest with thousands of
still standing and fallen deceased Red Gums from the original
woodlands before the Yarrawonga weir was constructed. This is
the area for the lure casters and crafty trollers. There can be
some great lure fishing here and there are a few techniques that
are used. The two most popular techniques would be to drift through
the woods slowly and cast along as many snags as you can providing
the breeze is no too strong. It can be tiring work but very productive
as much ground is covered. The other popular method is to tie
off or anchor so a known snag or promising Murray Cod lair can
be investigated more thoroughly, this is the best way to draw
a strike particularly when the fish are a little quiet. This area
is mostly fished by lure casters through the day after more popular
areas have been worked. The water depth on average is around the
2.5m to 3.5m range and this is perfect for the Murray Cod to spend
the day when the Sun is high. A good tip when casting this area
is to cast a 5/8 or 3/4 spinnerbait in glossy gold with a single
large gold willow blade and a gold flashy skirt. Use long cast's
and slow retrieves and work an entire area over a couple of times.
Pay particular attention to any trunks laying down or other prominent
structure under water and get your spinnerbait close into the
timber. Multiple casting over large structure like this just might
draw a strike from a hesitant Cod. We have given some snags 10-20
casts before a strike happens so don't lose faith and be determined
and stubborn and you will surprise yourself. On days when the
fish seem reluctant to play the game try using the same spinnerbait
with a single large gold Colorado blade and retrieve extra slow,
just enough to keep it off the bottom and have the blades spinning.
If the water clarity is a little cloudy or dirty change the gold
spinnerbait to a silver and see how you go.
6. -This is a very productive trolling channel and good
size fish have come out of here in the past. It is not fished
as much as other area's due to it's distance on the far side of
the lake and this is where many experienced trollers in the know
fish with good results.
7. -The Everglades area can be fished using the same techniques
as for Kieffen's Reserve (Item #4)
8. -The Bundalong area is where the mighty Murray River
spreads out and transforms into Lake Mulwala. Along this section
of river is where some of the largest Murray Cod are found. Trolling
the river is the most popular method but to the experienced there
are many good holes and snags to explore.
9. -Gul Island is a very productive place for the Spinnerbait
casters chasing Golden Perch. Casting into the bank around the
snags and reeds in about 2m to 4m of water has been very rewarding
for many who fish this area.
10 -The Majors Ck area is a great area that has a combination
of every form of fishing this lake has to offer. A full day can
be spent here from sunrise through till the evening and you would
have just about tried every trick in your book. There are good
trolling areas in the channels with some big fish being encountered,
Spinnerbaits and diving lures do well in around the wooded areas
of around 2m to 4m of water and there is shallow areas that are
conducive to surface lures and Spinnerbaits in the times of low
light. Also try casting your diving lures and Spinnerbaits around
the reedy areas of the small islands that are found here. There's
no doubt that you will have a full day here exploring the possibilities
just as long as the wind does not spring up as it can get quite
uncomfortable. This area is the best the lake can offer for a
chance to hook into a Murray Cod so give it a go. There is a very
good boat ramp here with a good parking area.
11. -The Willows is a very popular spot for all who like
to toss lures. Diving lures and Spinnerbaits work well here, the
most popular methods used are to cast into the Willow trees that
line the bank from Rams Head to Pierce Point. Working the area
from one end to the other covering as much of the area as possible
will usually produce good results. Most Murray Cod caught here
are usually of small size mainly 40cm to 60cm but they can be
found in there numbers on good days. It is also a good spot to
get out of the wind on some days and is also the best spot for
the newcomer or beginner to hook-up to their first Murray Cod.
Sundown is the best time to fish this spot, as the fish tend to
become alot more gamer.
NB. Just as a footnote, some of this area has had the willows
totally removed due to a major housing and resort development.
Let us just hope that once construction is finished the fish habitat
along the shoreline is restored.
12. -This area can be fished the same as the Willows area
(item 11) and there is also a good trolling run in the channel
here. Weed can be a problem at times.
13. -The Yarrawonga-Mulwala Bridge is a good place to troll
in the main channel that runs under the bridge. Trollers beware
as there is a lure loving snag here that must look like a lure
lovers Christmas tree.
14. -This area between the road bridge and the railway
bridge has very deep channels on each side that join into the
main channel that goes under the road bridge. These channels are
for the deepest of diving lures and trolling on the northern bank
just out from the weed beds produces some good Murray Cod. Weed
can be a problem here at times.
Lake Mulwala Boat Ramps
All the areas in the western or main part of the lake can be accessed
by any one of the boat ramps in Yarrawonga or Mulwala. Just keep
in mind if fishing the Kieffins area leave yourself enough time
to get back to the ramp before the light fades as it can be rather
difficult and even quite hazardous to navigate in poor light.
Alternatively there is a sandy-bottomed ramp at Keiffens Reserve
that most times requires the use of a 4wd for safe boat loading
Areas #6 & #10 are best accessed via the Majors Ck Boat Ramp
which can be found heading east along the Murray Valley Hwy away
from Yarrawonga and turning left into Majors Ck Rd just before
the road Bridge over Majors Ck.
Areas #7, #8 & #9 are best accessed via the Bundelong Ramp
at the Junction of the Murray & Ovens Rivers.
A good point to learn and remember before you decide which ramp
you want to use is to take note of the direction of the wind and
how strong it is as this will help you decide which ramp is best
for you. Depending on the wind direction some ramps can be rather
difficult when the breeze picks up so give this some very careful
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Regarding Rec Fishing at Lake Mulwala & Lake Hume
NSW Recreation Fishing Licence Online
for Cod in Mulwala's Margins Article by Neil Slater
Cod Opening Classic Report
Cod Opening Classic Report