SW Vic Fishing Personality And Journalist
Former tournament angler, Mark Gercovich is a prolific fishing writer who has penned numerous articles for Victoria Fishing Monthly, Fishing World, Freshwater Fishing Australia, Kaydo Fishing World, Hooked Up magazine and others. Lake Purrumbete and it’s amazing trout fishing is right in his back yard, and Mark loves nothing better than to head there in the winter months and sight cast to trophy brown trout – with a chance of picking up multiple other trout or salmon species into the bargain.
Mark’s Top Trout Fishing Tips
- At various stages over the past 10-15 years Lake Purrumbete has been stocked with brown, rainbow, brook, tiger and leopard trout, along with both Chinook and Atlantic salmon. Mark likes to focus on sight fishing the large browns (average 4-8lb with bigger fish on the cards). Other species turn up from time to time. Those wishing to target rainbow trout or Chinook salmon will do better deep trolling in nearby Lake Bullen Merri.
- Purrumbete is an ancient volcanic crater, so the water depth drops off fairly quickly as you move towards the centre of the lake. Mark likes to work along the weedy margins, casting his lures towards the shore and into shallower water, working them along edges or through holes in the weed. Trolling also works, but an electric motor is essential.
- The best fishing seems to occur in the cooler months, lead ups to new and full moons fish best and Mark prefers a little wind to get the fish feeding. However, Purrumbete can get very rough, so on very windy days you might need to abandon the usual trout strategy of fishing the exposed shores and instead find a sheltered corner.
- Trout in Lake Purrumbete respond to relatively aggressively worked lures with plenty of side to side action.
Mark’s Preferred Trout Fishing Tackle
- Purrumbete is a very clear water lake, but Mark fishes a minimum of 8lb leader and up to 12lb at times to help keep the bigger fish from burying him in the weed. Other than that, regular freshwater and estuary gear of 3-4kg spin rod, 2500 size reel and 8lb braid should suffice.
Mark’s Brown Trout Fishing Lures
- Berkley Gulp Smelt in 3-4″, white in colour with a 1/8 jig head is Marks #1 lure to start off. This lure is very versatile and the relatively large jig head allows for long casts. This lure can be worked aggressively side to side with plenty of wrist then letting it drop to the bottom occasionally. It can also be cast into gaps in the weeds and allowed to sink down before being worked back out..
- The Daiwa Double Clutch hardbody is a great imitation of local minnows and is effective in the 70 and 95mm sizes. The smaller size is usually cast at the shallows, whilst the larger lure can be either cast or trolled along the weed margins behind an electric motor. Depending on line and conditions, this lure typically works at around 1.6 to 1.8m, so watch your sounder to have it skimming the weed tops with a twitchy slow wind and pausing occasionally.
- If the water is too shallow for the double clutch you can substitute an 80mm Duo Realis jerkbait and fish it the same way as the Double Clutch.
- The OSP Bent Minnow is a great lure for targeting trout around the margins and can be fished in incredibly shallow or heavily weeded water where you might not expect to find a fish. Mark prefers to work it aggressively in much the same way as the soft plastic.