After a summer most Victorians would have been better off without, the weather at Millbrook Lakes seems to have swung the other way and we’re now in the midst of a much colder than average June, with snow and heavy frosts already. Water temperatures on the lakes have dropped into single figures and fishing opportunities are changing by the day. Steady rain has the water starting to creep up from low summer/autumn levels.
Highlights of winter so far have included smelters. These fish are chasing huge galaxias at Macphersons, gambusia at Cabin and smelt at Baby Blue. A surprise has been the continuation of very good evening midge hatches, particularly at Harbours, Cabin and Bluegum. How much longer these will last is anyone’s guess, but by August big midge hatches are usually back in force, so maybe we’ll have a whole winter of midge!
Meanwhile guided catches in early winter have been good, with indicator fishing and searching with small wets proving most effective, changing to big wets on dark. John and his two novice friends landed 10 fish between them last week, ranging from 2 to 7 pounds.
The exceptional growth rate of fish has been the real highlight of the year so far at Millbrook, and quite unexpected given the tough summer. Some of the trout we stocked in early spring at 6 inches and a few ounces in weight are hitting 20 inches and nearly 4 pounds. Even the older fish in the 5 to 8 pound range are holding superb condition. With trout like this around, once the water starts to flood back into the grass we could see some exceptional action, so fingers crossed for the next downpour.