Talking Tactics Surface Cod in the Dark in Lakes/Dams

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    I have been putting in a lot of casts lately looking for cod in my local lakes with surface flies before dawn without much interest.

    What are peoples experiences in regards to fly size, profile, water disturbance, noise etc?

    Retreives – Rhythmic?, Pauses? Noisy “bloops”?

    Any suggestions / experiences would be appreciated as I need to build my confidence back before the season reopens.

    <p style=”text-align: left;”>Andy</p>




    I like 4/0 Dahlberg Divers and Gurglers.

    Plenty of bloops and water movement but I have found the key is plenty of pauses. I seem to be more successful with the first bloop after a pause which I think is an aggression take. If you watch cicadas, moths etc, they cause a commotion, then stay still before fluttering about again.

    I know others that swear by poppers so I dont think it is the exact fly but the surface disturbance that is the key.



    I reckon if you could glue a matchbox to a hook it would work.Are your lake/dams known for their Cod fishing?Are local lure fishers successful?What depths are you fishing?Personally i’d fish shallower rather than deeper but your always a chance.

    PS. If you’ve only tried lately(Winter)Wait till the warmer months should be way more chance of success.



    Hi aybe,

    Thanks for your reply. Yes there are certainly Cod in the lakes but probably not in huge numbers.

    The lure guys have success although I don’t see many posts of fish taken off the surface. Most of the fishos I talk to are using spinnerbaits or swimbaits & I’ve got a couple on subsurface flies as well.

    I have seen big surface implosions & missed one while not being ready for it, dammit.

    I have been concentrating my efforts on “flats “, usually 1-3 meters deep with patchy weed beds. I’m also varying my retreives & pauses.

    Would you think multiple retreives in the same place or just covering as much water as possible is best?





    Thanks woody-wood,

    I will definitely put more emphasis on the pauses, maybe even downsizing my usual 100-120mm articulated flies.

    I’m in Canberra, so not a lot of cicadas but we do get decent size moths around.

    I have seen a couple of decent surface implosions in shallow (1-2m) reed lined bays & have been concentrating my efforts in these areas.

    Thanks for your input,




    Andrew when i fish lakes in the dark i’m using the saved route feature of the electric.So the boat is constantly covering new water.During daylight i might chuck more casts at a worthwhile spot .Nothing wrong with varying the retrieve likely helps a solid hookup.I don’t fish lakes when its windy waves slapping on the boat make it difficult to hear the fly.Also having the luxury of going when i want i stay home when there is any South in the wind.


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