Lake Canobolas is a moderate size water storage located about 10km outside Orange. It is a General Trout Dam which also holds Murray Cod, Silver Perch, Golden Perch and large numbers of introduced Redfin Perch. Vehicle access is available between 730am and sunset (check signs for details) although you can walk to the dam 24 hours a day.
Most fishermen target Brown Trout, Rainbow Trout and Redfin Perch.
Surface Area: 10ha
Max Depth: 7m
Year Constructed: 1917
The lake was formed by daming Medow Creek.
Boating: Boating is restricted to unpowered boats. Facilities for launching canoes are provided.
Disabled Access: This is one of very few inland lakes with facilities designed to give disabled people fishing access. With the support of Orange City Council and the DPI Freshwater Fishing Trust, locals designed and installed a fishing platform that is suitable for wheel chairs. This a good place to fish and to meet other people.
Regulations: General Trout Dam. Two attended rods per person. Two hooks per rod (with up to 3 hooks per artificial fly or lure) or 3 (where those hooks are artificial flies or lures). Trout size limit 25cm. Trout bag limit 5 fish.
Redfin perch should not be returned to the water as they are a pest species.
No power boats permitted. Check the DPI website for other regulations.
This is very much a mixed method fishery. You can use just about any legal fresh water fishing technique and catch a fish.
Fishing with baits such as worms, grubs, shrimp and small yabbies works well for most species. Try rigging these baits with a light leader (3 – 4 foot long) and a running sinker. Powerbait also works well with this rig when targeting trout.
In summer live grass hoppers are a good bait to fish on the surface. Use a bubble float half full of water with a 5 foot leader. Lightly greased the leader so it floats. If you can collect lots of grass hoppers you can throw some on the water to attract the fish and get them feeding. Try to keep your float close to the grass hoppers you throw onto the water.
Redfin Perch and Natives prefer lipless crank baits and spinner baits. The speed of your retrieve should be slow in winter and can be more vigorous in summer when the fish are more active. Redfin will take jigs. It is best to fish these from a boat bumping the jig off bottom as you drift in a light wind.
A good all round lure is a small dark colour soft plastic that has a touch of silver, gold, red, pink or orange along the sides. Fish shapes work best, particularly those with a tail that moves vigorously. Attached to a small or medium jig head these lures are very adaptable, as they can be used to spin or jig. Perch and trout will take soft plastics. Trout also like tassie devils and minnow style lures fished with a slow retireve.
In summer grass hoppers, pumpkin beetles, flying ants, dragonflies, cadis flies and mayflies are often found in large numbers near Lake Canobolas during the day. As night falls christmas beetles, black beetles, crickets and white and grey moths with appear. In summer try dry flies that match these insects.
The cooler months are better for wet fly fishing. Most people use streamers, with the wooly bugger being the most popular option. Try sinking line to get your fly down deep.
Video: A video by a couple of young blokes (Brody and Aaron) fishing for Red’s in Lake Canobolas (offensive language warning).