Written by Rhys Creed
The last month of cod season has begun and it’s one of the best. The coldest of the temperatures have hopefully past us and now we can begin to see the mercury climb. July is one of the toughest months to target not only any species but Murray Cod especially. I have a pet cod in a tank and now that the water is cold he slows right down in activity. I rarely see him swim away from his log all day – makes me wonder if the cod in the dams act the same. Sometimes it feels like they don’t ever move!
Good news – the cod do move and even more so as the weather begins to warm up. The cod will commence their feast as they prepare for the breeding season. They will feed up to help gain energy and this is even more important for the monsters Murray Cod.
End of August
Towards the very end of August the weather will begin to warm up – hopefully! And if the dams are blessed with clear and sunny days the cod will turn right on! Best of all you don’t have to be fishing in the middle of the night trolling big lures in the freezing cold. The best technique is actually during the day – casting big soft plastics!
If you had of talked to any cod angler back 5 years ago about catching cod on soft plastics they would pull a funny face. It was unheard of most likely because no one tried it.
Why? I have no idea.
Maybe because no one had made a big enough plastic yet or possibly because they aren’t the most snag proof or versatile native lure on the market. But when they are extremely life like and can fool metre plus cod on a consistent basis why wouldn’t you use one?
If you are thinking of heading for a late season stint of Murray Cod fishing make sure you have some soft plastics on board. And not just any soft plastics – they need to be BIG!
Make them BIG
That’s right – you need to cast something that will hurt your arm at the end of the day. Otherwise you may as well not bother. Use a plastic in excess of 150mm and anywhere up to 250mm. A lure larger than 250mm would be great but it becomes a bit ridiculous and almost impossible to cast.
The Social Fishing Team have been using the FX Fury’s from Traps Tackle (www.trapstackle.com.au). These lures are the most realistic plastics on the market. They have the perfect design with a spot on body shape along with super detail in the fins, eye and tail. The tail is created with thinner sections to allow extreme side to side action as it wobbles – and this is the game changer. A lure needs to have a good tail action because the cod will be following and looking at the lure from behind. The FX Fury is spot on with the action! It also has a side to side body roll on a slow retrieve – a deadly action!
They have a range of colours and there are 4 that really come to mind. In order of my favourites:
- Slimer (Rainbow Trout Imitation)
- Green Trout
- Blue Minnow
My favourite is the Rainbow Trout imitation as the waterways we fish are home to Rainbow Trout and these are the cods top food source during winter. They are feeding on the rainbow Trout that are around the surface and in the shallows during winter. It’s all about matching the hatch in any style of fishing – even when it comes to cod.
We rig the plastics with a 3/4oz, 7/0 hook Nitro Jighead tied to our 30lb or 40lb fluorocarbon leader with a loop knot. Make sure you run a stinger hook as well – either a 6/0 or 7/0 will do the trick.
Why do we use such light leader? In the waterways we target big cod like Blowering and Eildon, the water is extremely clear and by using a lighter leader we manage to tempt more hits. In low light periods or in dirty water I would use a 50lb leader, but in clear water 50lb can spook some fish.
How to Fish Soft Plastics Correctly
There is a lot to learn about how to fish BIG plastics correctly for monster Murray Cod. There are a range of different locations to target and retrieve styles to use. You can learn more about using soft plastics for cod in dams in the ‘Lure Fishing for Murray Cod in Dams’ tutorial from the Complete Guide Series. You can find that series by clicking here
Don’t forget, Traps Tackle is the only location in Australia in which you can get the FX Fury’s – so make sure to check out the website and grab yourself a couple of BIG cod lollies.
Visit Traps Tackle website here