David Oliver on a morning session with Mr Somerset Brett Klaws.

Bass and saratoga shine at Somerset

This fish fell to a Dave’s lure.
Chloe’s third birthday present – her first bass with dad.
A healthy Somerset bass.

SUMMER is just around the corner, so we should start seeing super hot surface action at the back of Somerset Dam, with regular catches of saratoga and bass. We have been spending a fair amount of time in the timber regions of the dam throwing punch rigs and skirted jigs – these have been exciting catches as the strikes are violent and hard.

Spinnerbaits and lipless crankbaits have been successful on catches – these are large quantity fish sessions, and you will work a little harder for the catch but the fight is super exciting. This area is friendlier for a boat that doesn’t run spotlock or for a kayak because the water is usually calmer, with less wind to deal. Bass saratoga Somerset

My favourite lures this month would have to be the Jackall TN60 in Brown Dog, Impact PML S-Bait Spinnerbait in Cicada and the highly anticipated bass alternative punch rig. If you’re concerned about loosing an expensive lipless crankbait, my advice is to remove all the trebles and place a 2/0 single hook under the belly, this greatly reduces your chance of losing to a snag and improves your hook-up rate.

The main basins of the dam have been quite difficult with hit and miss sessions. It has been producing better catches in the afternoon, with fish being caught suspended in 15m depths. Trolling Dave’s lures and Voodoo lures have been super successful due to the tight wobble action.

Colours haven’t been a super standout but if you were to ask my team at the shop, they will tell you the Halco RMG in black/silver – we have specially made – and the Voodoo in PG Lime. Halco Twisty lures and Palms Slow Blatt Cast Oval Micro Jig lures in the wide 30g have been great in schooling bass, as we’ve had reports of good catches on Nories Wasaby spoons and Gibbs Mini G1 spoons. Bass saratoga Somerset

Don’t forget to add a single in-line hook as an assist for your spoon. Ensure you use a super slow retrieve – and if you think you’re going slowly… you’re still too fast! Earlier in the month, we had a few great morning catches on slider grub plastics in plum glitter chartreuse tail on 1/2oz jigheads.

Redclaw catches have been quite good, with nice models sourced. You will need to place your pots in 3-4m depths and look for rocky edges that stem into the water. We have had reports of guys hooking up to cod, which is great to see – though please handle these fish with care.

We also ask if you’re pulling fish out of water 7-8m deep, you may need to either needle them  – we have great videos on our Facebook page on how to do this – or place in the livewell with a bit of Rejuvenade and a couple of fin weights. These help keep fish upright, which helps them settle before release. Bass saratoga Somerset

Be wary – as summer comes water temperature rises, particularly on the surface, so allow for this while your fish are in the livewell. Due to rising water temperature, from November onwards we’ll start to see tilapia catches increase, and they are aggressive when looking after their young. These need to be destroyed and placed into the fish bins located at the spit area and the NRMA Holiday Park. Bass saratoga Somerset

We look forward to seeing you and your family in the Somerset Fishing Tackle shop and will help to make your fishing experience on the lake as positive as we are able to. Bass saratoga Somerset

Until next month, have fun on the water, be safe and enjoy the sport.

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About Robbie Rayner

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