Robbie Alexander fishing spots

Robbie Alexander

NE Victorian Fishing Identity

Robbie first appeared on the Australian Lure Fishing Podcast way back in Episode 2. He’s a full-time fishing influencer, publishing his fishing vlog multiple times per week on Youtube and helping an eager audience to enjoy and experience what fishing in NE Victoria has to offer. In today’s episode we explore his suggestions for fishing NE Victoria in the Spring months.

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Robbie’s Top NE Victoria Spring Fishing Spots

#1: Lake Nillahcootie Fishing – Yellowbelly In Spring

  • Spring is a great time to chase some yellowbelly (golden perch) in Lake Nillahcootie, especially as the water warms up late in the season. There are cod, carp and silver perch in the system too, but cod are protected at present by the normal seasonal closures.
  • Fishing from a boat or kayak and using small to medium sized hard bodied lures or vibes is effective, especially trolling. However there is plenty of access for land-based anglers off the Midland Highway and near the boat ramps.
  • When trolling, Robbie uses a Bassman Tubby Native or 85mm Old Mate lure and will troll along in his kayak staying far enough from the shore that the lures are just deep enough to stay in contact. If the lure is hitting the bottom just occasionally then you’re in the right depth and are in with a good chance.
  • This is not a trophy yellowbelly fishery – Eildon and Hume – hold monsters, but most Nillacootie yellowbelly are in the 40-47 cm size range, though bigger ones turn up occasionally.
  • Lipless crankbaits (Robbie likes the Jiggle Fishing Little Ripper, but it’s hard to get these days). These can be simply “tea-bagged” vertically just above the bottom and get taken regularly by yellowbelly.

 

#2 Lake Eildon Fishing Murray Cod Fishing In Spring

  • This is not a system that Robbie fishes much personally, but he wanted to highlight it as a cod fishery that is open year-round. It’s also a great spot to chase big yellowbelly during spring.
  • Large surface lures of 200-250mm size are the best option, with specialist casting rods and reels.
  • For yellowbelly, the same hard body lures and lipless cranks are perfect, as well as spinnerbaits.

 

#3 Waranga Basin Redfin Fishery

  • This is an off-stream storage fed by the Goulburn River system and is a year-round redfin perch fishing spot – not all NE Victorian waterways fish well for redfin in spring.
  • Shore based fishing is possible, but you’ll need to wade the perimeters to get extra casting distance and cover water with small to medium soft plastic lures, spinners and spinnerbaits, diving minnows and so on. This area tends to be very windy, but Harriman Point is a great place to fish shore-based as it offers options regardless of the wind direction. Fish do come into the shallows a lot, especially first thing in the morning or late afternoon, so don’t be put off by the gently sloping banks and shallow water.
  • Again, this is not a trophy fishery, but plenty of redfin of a table size can be taken through spring.
  • Casting is the priority in this system when land-based. A longer rod, light line and good lure weight will assist to getting a longer casting distance and covering more water, especially given the shallow, gently sloping banks.
  • Robbie likes the Strike Tiger Nymph or Strike Tiger Leech soft plastic lures in the whitebait pearl colour or banana shock colour for fishing this system. The nymph is 1” long and Robbie takes off the claws to make it more like a minnow.
  • The Damiki Volt 42mm blade or TT Switchblade is another great lure for this system as it can be cast. Robbies strategy is to rig the blade on the back hole to make the lure vibrate harder and swim shallower, then simply slow roll it with some speed variations to excite the fish.
  • Shallow running minnow style lures are perfect if they swim just a few centimetres beneath the water.
  • For kayak or boat fishing Robbie uses a similar approach as at Lake Nillahcootie, working parallel with the banks and keeping the lure just above the bottom. Small lures like the Dimiki Disco 38 or a One Well Lunch that dive to 7 feet or so are perfet for trolling in 8-9ft of water.

 

#4 Dartmouth Dam Trout Fishing

  • This lake is almost entirely inaccessible other than by boat, and it’s all about trout fishing.
  • The most popular strategy for targeting trout in this system during spring is to simply troll Tassie Devil style lures on a “flatline” (ie no lead line , paravane or downrigger). Later in the year as the water warms the fish will go deeper and these other strategies will allow the angler to take more fish.
  • Robbie likes the “Pink Pather” coloured Tassie Devils and finds the best strategy is simply to troll them at a very brisk pace all throughout the lake, zig zagging around with the lure a long way behind the boat. Finding places where there are shadows from the steep banks will increase your odds.
  • Robbie like to troll Tassie Devils on a monofilament line because he feels the stretch in mono allows the lure to swim more erratically. He uses 4lb Maxima Ultragreen for this style of fishing.
  • Most trout in Dartmouth are in the 30-40cm size range, with occasional larger ones. Fishing a firm drag whilst trolling will assist with hook sets.
  • Dull, foggy, overcast days definitely fish better for trout than bright, sunny days, especially when flatlining.

 

#5 Buckland River Trout Fishing

    • Spring is the best time to fish for trout in the streams of NE Victoria, which include the Ovens, Broken, Mitta Mitta, Buckland, Buffalo and Kiewa, to name a few. This discussion focusses on the Buckland, but everything that’s shared can be applied to the other rivers and creeks of this area.
    • You can follow the Buckland Valley Road and will find tons of access points and riverside camp sites along the way. You’ll find some of them have amenities and are even shown on Google maps.
    • Basic tackle should include a light, 6’ to 6’6”, 1-2kg spin rod with 1000 size reel, 4lb Maxima Ultragreen line. Braid is fine, too, Robbie just prefers mono.
    • The Strike Tiger Nymph in black and gold is a good soft plastic for this system, but lots of other softies will work too. Small minnow style lures, spinners (such as the Vibrax, Celta) Grasshopper flies can also be very effective here too.
    • Wading up the river and casting to holes, eddies, rocks, shaded areas, the base of tussocks and pretty much anywhere in the river. Don’t make the mistake of walking past lots of good water looking for holes.
    • Start downstream and work your way upstream making no more than 2-3 casts at each piece of cover or structure.

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