Welcome to the Lake Wartook Fishing Guide. Lake Wartook is one of the larger lakes in the Grampians area and roughly 20 minutes from Halls Gap. Lake Wartook is a 3-hour drive from Melbourne, heading towards Ararat. Acting as a domestic and irrigation storage in the Grampians National Park. This beautiful country setting along the picturesque mountains of halls gap nestled within the Grampians. Lake Wartook continues to be a great fishery for trout and redfin.

Things to do at Lake Wartook

This is a good location to take the family and unplug in a beautiful country setting. You could stay at the Halls Gap Lakeside Tourist Park which has breathtaking views, heated pools, cabins, glamping and a great assortment of local wildlife. You can also head a little further out at the  Lake Bellfield Big 4 Caravan park.  Nearby attraction includes halls gap zoo, Mackenzies falls, Silverband falls, Venus loop walks, Grampians helicopter flights, wine tours, rock climbing, and bushwalking.

This whole area is great for fishing, it’s not just Lake Wartook. but you also have surrounding lakes including Lake Fyans, Rocklands Reservoir, Lake Lonsdale and Lake Bellfield

Watch our detailed video guide on our top 10 redfin lures below

Fishing Lake Wartook

At Lake Wartook you can catch

  • redfin
  • brown trout
  • rainbow trout
  • river blackfish
  • tench

Lake Wartook is a clean system with a muddy bottom that has good size and number of redfin and both rainbow and brown trout are caught here regularly. The lake is regularly stocked with brown trout and rainbow trout stockings have ceased after some failed attempts historically. There are 2 islands within the lake a large island near the wire wall and a small island on the opposite end known as Bear Island. The east side of the lake is quite shallow and full of weed making the fishing challenging however this is often where trout are holding. The other areas of the lake are quite deep and great spots to find schools of redfin. Boats and kayaks are welcome and a good spot to drift for the local Redfin. It’s a prime location to fish with a kayak and unbelievable potential for those who enjoy fly fishing. Land-based anglers will also catch a good volume of redfin casting soft plastics from the banks.

Effective fishing techniques include trolling hard-bodied lures in the deeper channels and casting hard-bodied lures, soft plastics and surface lures along the shallows and banks. We would highly recommend when fishing here concentrate your time and effort casting lures towards and suspending baits hard up against the visible structure and depth changes. With many of the largest fish often caught amongst the timber. The trick here is to present a lure or bait and tempt the bigger ones out of the structure they are residing in for a reaction strike.

Boats with motors up to 10 hp are permitted on the lake however do take caution as there are many submerged tree stumps. Boat access to the lake is done by a gravel road where lots of fishing will happen around the wall, with productive fishing noted for trout in the winter months. Trout and Redfin are notorious for feeding more heavily at Dawn and Dusk. My personal favourite is fishing the sundown.

Lake Wartook Gear selection

Good gear selection here would include a 1-3 or 2-4 kilo fishing rod coupled with a 1000, 2000 or 2500 size reel spooled with 4-8-pound braid and equivalent fluorocarbon leader.

Trolling Tassie Devils, stump jumpers and minnow imitations such as the Daiwa double clutch at different depths is a great way to fish Lake Wartook. We have also had great success fishing with a range of soft plastics & lures. Click here to see our best lures & plastics to catch redfin.

If bait fishing Mudeye, live minnow and powerbait on a float is a great choice when targeting trout. Other good options include scrub worms and yabbies. I would do so using a very simple running sinker rig with a small hook or treble, and a small pea size sinker. Berleying an isolated area and fishing that one spot is also a great idea when bait fishing.

 

Recommended fishing lures Lake Wartook

Recommended baits Lake Wartook

  • Scrub worms
  • Powerbait
  • Yabbies
  • Mudeye
  • live minnow
  • maggots

 

Targeting Trout at Lake Wartook

Trout

We would highly recommend that you read our detailed guide on how to catch trout which details our favourite lures, baits and techniques. You can follow when trout will be stocked using the Victorian trout stocking programs as part of the target 1 million by 2020 and 10 million by 2022 initiatives.

When using lures, we would recommend shallow diving hard body minnows, metal spoons, spinners, and Tassie devils. Soft plastics are also very effective on trout. If your bait fishing, then Mudeye, scrub worms, power bait, yabbies and minnows suspended on a float or a running sinker rig is a great choice when targeting trout here. Fly fishing is a popular fishing method at this location. Trout are more active in cold conditions with most catches on first and last light of the day.

We recommend targeting trout we recommend a 1-3 or 2-4 kilo fishing rod coupled with a 2000, 2500 or 3000 reel spooled with 4-8-pound braid and equivalent fluorocarbon leader should be perfect. If there are trophy size trout around then you could go heavier moving up the scale to a 3-5 kilo class spin rod spooled with fine 8-12-pound braid and equivalent fluorocarbon leader.

We conducted a test to see which would perform better for stocked trout powerbait or lures. Watch the video below to find out the results which were interesting.

Targeting Redfin at Lake Wartook

Redfin

We recommend targeting redfin with a light spin outfit. This will make the experience more enjoyable and improve your catch rates. A 1-3 or 2-4 kilo fishing rod coupled with a 2000, 2500 or 3000 reel spooled with 4-8-pound braid and equivalent fluorocarbon leader should be perfect.

Redfin respond really well to lures and soft plastics so do check our guide on the best lures for catching Redfin When using soft plastics, we highly recommend curl tails, minnow imitations, and paddle tails in both natural and bright colours. Rigged with a jig head that’s 1/8 through to 1/20 in weight. The most effective way to use these is to cast towards visible structure and slow roll the soft plastic with lifts and pauses for the retrieve.

Shallow diving hard body lures, blades and vibes are also very effective in this system. So are traditional spinners and Tassie devils in bright colours. Metal spoons also play a role allowing you to cast great distances and targeting the bigger size reddies. Just remember they are quite heavy and very prone to snags in small inland systems like this one.

Acknowledgements

Images of fish supplied VFA and DEPI. All images and videos shown on the Lake Wartook Fishing Guide are Fishing Mad originals.

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