Handy Tips for Autumn Freshwater Fishing in the Macedon Ranges

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Local fishing enthusiast and writer for Fishing Monthly Magazine Cara Cummings talks about autumn freshwater fishing in the Macedon Ranges.

As vibrant reds, oranges and shades of yellow begin to emerge through the foliage and crisp mornings have arrived, you know conditions are perfect for freshwater fishing in the Macedon Ranges.

The best way to appreciate nature in its most playful and colourful state is to immerse yourself amongst it. Pack your picnic blanket, fishing rods and camera. Fill your hamper with goodies from the enticing local cafes. And head off to a local reservoir, lake or river to try your hand at fishing!

Whether you’re a keen angler or a novice, you can’t deny there are many positive attributes fishing has to offer. Fill your lungs with fresh air, enjoy the tranquility, take in your surrounds and switch off from technology. Your mental health will thank you later.



1. Shore fishing at Lauriston Reservoir 2. Kayak fishing at Lauriston Reservoir 3. Redfin caught at Lauriston Reservoir

Freshwater fishing hot spots in autumn

The excitement that builds when one catches a fish is contagious. There’s a certain sense of achievement when patience pays off. And a most definite added bonus if dinner is provided.

If you’re keen to drop a line, there’s a number of great locations in the Macedon Ranges you could visit. Whether bank fishing is your preference or you prefer to get out in a kayak, here’s some handy advice on where and how to fish during autumn.

Bank Fishing

Lauriston, Malmsbury and Upper Coliban reservoirs all have great access for bank fishing. But first try your luck along the Campaspe River in Kyneton and fish for Golden Perch, Trout, Redfin, Tench and Carp.

Head down Campaspe Place (off Piper Street) for river access or drive to the end of Mill Street. Here you’ll find an old fishing platform on the bank, as well as picnic tables and shady trees.

Campaspe River Kyneton

Nearby the fishing platform along the Campaspe River, Kyneton.

Fishing with the family

Upper Coliban Reservoir, Lauriston Reservoir and Hanging Rock Reserve dam* are best suited to groups.

The reservoirs and Hanging Rock Reserve dam are regularly kept stocked with fish, plus there are amenities and barbecue cooking facilities. Lauriston Reservoir also has a great little playground for the kids and Hanging Rock Reserve offers beautiful walking trails.

*Admission fees apply to enter Hanging Rock Reserve

Macedon Ranges Freshwater Fishing

Lauriston Reservoir

Fishing with kayaks

Recently the Upper Coliban, Lauriston and Malmsbury Reservoirs opened to small non-petrol powered watercraft. All of these reservoirs are stocked with Murray Cod, Golden Perch (Yellow belly) and Trout. You’ll also find other species such as redfin and the elusive Macquarie Perch.

Now is a great time to get the kayaks out and into areas that have never been fished before!

Check out access entry points for each reservoir. Note that swimming is prohibited.

Kayaking Macedon Ranges

Lauriston Reservoir

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Fishing tips

Early mornings and dusk are the ideal fishing times, however, if fish are hungry or looking for a snack, they won’t turn down a good worm or lure!

Take note of the wind conditions as the fish shall head to the windward side. If the sun is out, try fishing around shaded areas or logs and fallen branch structure.

Fishing bait

The good old garden worm will do the trick for bait fishing, or small yabbies for a more gourmet temptation.

If you’re lure fishing, try small spinners, soft plastics (2”-3”) and hard body lures. The soft plastics are better suited to the weedy areas and are less likely to get snagged.

As many of the creeks are shallow, fly fishing is always a popular option and seems to be re-trending within the fishing community.

Freshwater Fishing Macedon Ranges

Lauriston Reservoir

Size limits and fish handling

For more information on fish handling, size limits, fishing seasons, fishing licences and stocked waterways in the Macedon Ranges, head to vfa.vic.gov.au.

Please be respectful of the fish and take care when handling them and be kind to the environment.

About the author

Cara is a Leader for Women in Recreational Fishing (WIRF), a network created by Victorian Fisheries Authority. Its aim is to encourage female participation with an online support platform, along with running events and workshops.  Cara also writes a regular article for ‘Fishing Monthly Magazine’, where she showcases what the WIRF team has been achieving, as well as fishing advice, upcoming events and other fun facts.

Cara’s also one of the faces behind ‘Cod and Yella’, a social media page dedicated to their personal fishing adventures. Cod and Yella is made up of two local families with young children who share a love of fishing. They’re keen freshwater anglers, primarily chasing Murray Cod and Yellow belly! Their aim is to encourage fellow fishers and get more individuals and families out fishing to share and discover this wonderful lifestyle.

Follow their fishing adventures on Facebook and Instagram @codandyella or email Cara

Cara Cummings kayaking at Lauriston Reservoir

Fishing essentials

If you’re all geared up to come out for a spot of freshwater fishing in the Macedon Ranges, here’s a few handy tips on where to get bait and licenses.

Where to purchase fishing bait

Bait can be purchased from Kuppers Service Station on Burton Avenue in Kyneton, Woodend Produce Store on 31 Bourke Street and Tylden General Store on 36 Trentham Road (corner of Tylden-Kyneton Road).

Where to get recreational fishing licenses

You can purchase a fishing license at Kyneton Newsagency on 95 Mollison Street and Malmsbury General Store on Mollison Street. Alternatively, pre-arrange a Victorian Recreational fishing license online

For more information about Macedon Ranges freshwater fishing, drop into the Visitor Information Centres in Kyneton and Woodend or call 1800 244 711.

Share the fishing love

Comment below on your favourite local fishing spots and useful tips. Got a great fishing pic? Share your Macedon Ranges fishing photos on Instagram with the hashtag #MacedonRangesNaturallyCool.

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