By Josh Kopp
As the water begins to cool the Murray cod will start to fire up, and as the leaves start to fall the big cod kick it up a gear getting ready for the cool winter months. Most of the inland lakes have seen some much needed rainfall. This and the end of the irrigation season should see the lake levels stabilise and the fishing become more consistent.
There is no substitution for time on the water in fishing, especially cod fishing. Bite periods can be so small when fishing for impoundment cod in the autumn months so the more time you can spend on the lake with rod in hand the chances of connecting to a giant increase. I like to pay particular attention to low light periods this time of year because this is when the cod are their most active.
Finding the bait can dramatically increase your chances, with areas like points and bays close to deep structure like the river bed or heavy timber perfect feeding grounds for cod. They will hold in the structure and when they feed moving up to the shallow water.
My preferred way to approach targeting big cod is searching for active fish. Moving in search of active fish has been my go-to approach for the last few seasons. I like to fish a run, a strecth of bank, a point or a bay, consistently moving the boat and making long searching casts so I can cover as much area as possible.
Throwing swimbaits and large soft plastics are the lures of choice as the cod key in on baitfish and baitfish profile lures. Fishing a variety of retrieves, with a slow roll and plenty of pauses, especially at the boat, the way to go.
Paying attention to the moon phases is also a key ingredient to the recipe for Murray cod. Look for the moon rise and moon set to line up with the low light periods and ensure you are fishing an hour either side of these in the areas mentioned above. The ‘turn of the tide’ has been a key in finding that magical bite period with several meter plus giants hooked in short succession.
Getting out in the autumn is one of the most enjoyable times of the year, the weather is perfect and the cod fishing is just starting to fire up. Hopefully these key ingredients can help you catch more Murray giants.