Welcome to the Pykes Creek Fishing Guide. Pykes Creek is located near the township of Ballan, located between the popular townships of Bacchus Marsh and Daylesford. It’s roughly a 55-minute drive from Melbourne which makes it a great local place to fish. This is a large creek popular with kayaks, boats, swimming, and Jetskis. The creek provides water for farmers in Bacchus Marsh and Werribee. Water levels can vary and the creek has had several recent outbreaks of Blue-Green Algae so always be mindful of the water conditions. Fishing is always interesting trout and redfin are your target species however large carp are often the most frequently caught fish. Some carp up to big sizes will happily take corn, bread, or worms. The lake periodically is stocked with trout depending on water levels and water quality. For those fishing doing so by small boat or kayak and trolling for trout and redfin has been a successful technique.

Watch a detailed video of us fishing at Pykes Creek



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Things to do at Pykes Creek Bacchus Marsh

This is a nice spot for the family. There is lots of open space for the kids to run around, and there are also basic BBQ facilities and small children’s playgrounds. Keep an eye out for wildlife such as skinks, lizards, kangaroos, wombats and local birdlife. The prime things to do here include, fishing, boating, swimming, bushwalking, or enjoying the open spaces and views. If you having a picnic with the family then you will need to bring your own chairs and shade. 

Nearby attractions include the Werribee Gorge state park and Lederderg state park which are popular for bushwalking and rock climbing. There is also St Annes Vineyard for locally made wines and the Dingo discovery sanctuary in Toolern Vale and the Ballan farmers market. You are also close to other prime fishing destinations such as Bostock Reservoir and Lake Daylesford.


Fishing at Pykes Creek

Pyke’s Creek reservoir is a diverse fishing location with many different freshwater species to target. You can catch rainbow trout, brown trout, redfin, carp, and eels. Victoria fisheries have also started stocking this location with native fish species including Murray Cod and Golden Perch. That’s almost 300,000 fish stocked since 2011 making this a wonderful freshwater fishery with a great diversity of species to target.

This is a great location for lures and soft plastics. However, the most effective method may be trolling old-school favorites like Tassie Devils. Long-casting metal lures, vibes, and spoons are a must-have option when fishing from the banks. They will allow you to cover great distances and target both trout and redfin at the same time. We cover how to target each individual species at this location further down.

Here you can see the fish stocking in Pykes creek. 40,000 in 2022 alone, and almost 300,000 in total.

Pykes Creek Reservoir Stocking 2022

Shallow diving hard body lures and heavily weighted soft plastic minnow imitations are also excellent choices.  Traditional lures such as spinners and Tassie devils will also work really well, especially in bright colours. You won’t need to get too fancy here a simple cast and slow roll will be effective. You may also consider trolling these slowly from your boat or kayak. In the early mornings, you may spot trout breaking the surface to take flys and crickets. Therefore fly and cricket imitation lures and soft plastics such as the savage Gear Mayfly are also options worth trying. When targeting freshwater species such as trout, redfin, and estuary perch we recommend fishing with a light spinning rod. This will make the experience more enjoyable and improve your catch rates. We suggest a 1-3 or 2-4 kilo fishing rod. Coupled with a 2000, 2500, or 3000 size reel that’s been spooled with a decent quality braid between 4-8 pounds. Then finished with roughly a rod length of a quality fluorocarbon leader. 

Bait fishing here can be quite productive from the banks. Some excellent bait options include mudeye on a float or scrub worms, power bait & yabbies on a light running sinker rig. This is a great choice for trout and redfin. Trout and redfin are notorious for feeding more aggressively at dawn and dusk. So we highly recommend fishing in the first and last hours of sunlight. Redfin is more active in the warmer months and trout is more active in the colder months. In recent years the reservoir has been heavily stocked with trout fingerlings.

Recommended baits for Pykes Creek

The video below demonstrates the best baits for trout and how to rig them correctly.  

  • Scrub worms
  • Mudeye
  • Powerbait
  • maggots
  • Earthworms
  • yabbies
  • live minnows

Recommended lures Pykes Creek

Need some help choosing lures and soft plastics. The video below is a detailed guide to get you started. 

  • Daiwa Double Clutch
  • Pontoon 21 paco spoon
  • Tassie Devils 13.5 grams in pinks and whites
  • Bluefox spinners
  • Rapala countdown floating minnow
  • EcoGear MX48
  • YoZuri pins minnow
  • Daiwa presso minnows
  • Nories laydown minnow
  • Bluefox spinners
  • OSP bent minnow
  • Daiwa DR joint minnows
  • Strike tiger nymph
  • Daiwa bait junkie 2.5-inch grub
  • Daiwa double clutch
  • Berkley powerbait grub
  • Tasmanian devil blade
  • Bullet lures 5-0 minnow
  • Tasmanian devil lure
  • Zman 2.5-inch grub
  • Bassman spinnerbait
  • Bullet lures 3cm lure
  • stump jumpers S3
  • Zerek fish trap
  • eco gear ZX40
  • Jackall TN50


Targeting Trout at Pykes Creek


One of the most effective ways to catch trout at Pyke’s Creek is trolling lures such as Tassie devils and double clutches at the back of your boat or kayak. Electric motors work great for this and the reduced noise will help increase catch rates. Generally, we are trolling with 2 rods out the back motoring along between 2.5 and 3.5 kilometres. Trout are more active in cold conditions with most catches on the first and last light of the day. You will notice much surface action during these times as they frequently go to the surface to feed on bugs.

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 trout stocking timelines by reading the Victorian trout stocking guide as part of the target 1 million by 2020 and 10 million by 2022 initiatives. When targeting trout with lures we recommend using shallow diving hard body minnows, metal spoons, spinners, Tassie devils, and soft plastics which are also very effective on trout. If your bait fishing, then Mudeye, scrub worms, power bait, yabbies and minnows suspended from a float or a running sinker rig are great options when targeting trout at this location.

We recommend targeting trout with a 1-3 or 2-4 kilo fishing rod coupled with a 1000, 2000, or 2500 reel spooled with 4-8-pound braid and equivalent fluorocarbon leader. When trolling or targeting the larger trophy-size trout around then you can 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.


Targeting Redfin at Pykes Creek

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 target the bigger size reddies. Just remember they are quite heavy and very prone to snags in small inland systems like this one.

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


Targeting Carp at Pykes Creek


There is a large volume of carp in local lakes however they are fun to catch and you can learn more about catching carp have a read our detailed guide to carp fishing around Victoria. When targeting carp standard baits such as corn, bread, and maggots work great for carp here. Using a simple running sinker rig with a pea-size sinker works great in this area. So, do suspend baits using a float. We have also fished well using unweighted baits. You can also target carp with hard body lures and soft plastics. This is a difficult technique that generally requires sight casting. This means spotting a nearby carp and casting right in there and working the lure of plastic slowly hoping they will strike. It’s tough but very rewarding when you catch a carp using this method. Most however will stick to targeting them with bait.

For rod selection, a 3-5 kilo rod coupled with a 4000 size reel is very suitable. You could even fish a little heavier with rods designed for snapper that are generally 4-7 kilo 7 foot in length. For fun, I have caught some monster size carp using 2-4 kilo rod and 6-pound braid. But I am prepared to lose some good fish in the process. We like to target carp on sundown, particularly in the warmer months. This is often when you see carp swimming along the edges or jumping out of the water around September-November which is their spawning season. European carp must not be returned to the water. Always carry your Victorian fishing license.

A simple yet effective fishing rig here is to thread a small running sinker through the mainline shown in blue, which is usually around 8 pounds. Then tie a medium swivel to the end allowing the sinker to run up the mainline freely. Then tie on the other end of the swivel 50cm of 8-pound fluorocarbon leader (the leader is shown in grey ). Finished with a hook. I generally use a size 6 bait keeper hook or size 10 long shank which is perfect for corn kernels or scrub worms, however, you can also use small treble style hooks which is a better setup if you use bread.

Running sinker fishing rig

If you getting snagged up then you can also use a float rig. Attach a quill or bubble float to your mainline. Thread the line through and adjust the length using a size 6 bait keeper hook or size 10 long shank to keep your bait suspended at a good depth. Ideally cast down breeze which will stop the float from coming back to you. If you’re not getting bites then adjust the line depth and If necessary add a splint shot to add weight.

Float fishing rig


Targeting Yellowbelly at Pykes Creek Reservoir

Golden Perch

Golden Perch stocking only started here in 2020, so it will take time to see how successful the stocking has been. Pykes Creek Reservoir has a limited structure but we are still optimistic these fish in time will flourish here. Yellow belly AKA Golden Perch is a beautiful freshwater fish found in this system. With a rich food source available the yellowbelly here grow too thick and plump sizes. Good lure choices include curl tail soft plastics with the zman 2.5-inch grubz and Gulp 3-inch grub minnow both in black are standout choices. Soft vibes such as the Zerek fish trap, Jackall transams and Samaki vibelicious are great options. lip-less crank-baits such as Jackall TN50 and TN60 continue to be very popular so do blades such as the eco gear ZX40 with stinger hooks. Other favourites are the reliable stump jumpers, spinnerbaits, bassman spinners, and large grub style soft plastics in dark colours.

Soft plastics are worked best on a 1/8 or 1/4 jig head slow-rolled along any structure. This works particularly well when tying your boat or kayak up against trees and working the soft plastic slowly up against the tree and adding some noise to the action by tapping the butt of your rod or by hitting the jig head into the timber. This brings out the predatory nature of the yellowbelly. Take advantage of down scan and side scan technologies on your sounder and spend some time moving between the structure to find the fish. Other lures to can be worked amongst the timber but in general work really well in open water being slow-rolled or trolled.

When it comes to rod selection we generally use a light spin rod around 7 foot in length in 1-4, 2-4 or 3-5 kilo class paired with a 1000, 2000, or 2500 size reel. Spooled with 8-12 pound braid and an equivalent fluorocarbon leader. Baitcaster rods and reels are a very popular choice when targeting Yellowbelly. Good options include a 3-5 or 4-6 bait caster with a 2000 bait caster reel. When bait fishing a 7-foot light rod paired with a 3000 size reel. Good bait rigs would include a paternoster rig with a small sinker at the bottom of a running sinker rig with scrub worms or yabbies.

Targeting Murray Cod at Pykes Creek Reservoir

Murray Cod

For Murray Cod as well the stocking only started here in 2020, so it will take time to see how successful the stocking has been. Pykes Creek Reservoir has a limited structure but we are still optimistic these fish in time will flourish here. Murray Cod is Australia’s largest freshwater fish that grows to impressive sizes. Cod are ambush predators that love the cover of structure so make sure you concentrate your efforts on any visible structure including logs and submerged trees. They will also seek shelter in deeper holes and rock ledges. Cod are most active in low light conditions such as sunrise and sundown. A medium to heavy bait caster rod is ideal when targeting cod. This might be a stiff 6-foot rods in 6-10 kilo class matched with a suitable size bait caster reel spooled with 20lb to 30lb braid and 30lb to 40lb leader.

Good lure options for Murray Cod include hard body lures, surface lures, spinnerbaits, swimbaits, shads, lipless crankbaits, paddle tails and curtail soft plastics. These should be worked slowly or tolled from your boat or kayak if access is permitted. There are some amazing surface lures on the market these days including imitation mice, frogs, ducks, and snakes with realistic action that are fun to target cod with. Bait anglers can target Murray cod with live yabbies and worms.

Pykes Creek Boat and Kayak Access

Pyke’s creek is a terrific location to launch a kayak or small boat. Please note that this is a popular destination for Jet Skis. You will want to do your best to avoid getting close to the jet skis for safety so they don’t disturb your fishing. The main boat ramp is located on Pyles creek road Myrnonong. A single launch facility and your boat will need to be banked after launch. You may also need to enquire about the water level before bringing your boat here as launching is difficult when water levels are low. This is a great spot for kayaking and you can pretty much launch your kayak from anywhere.

This creek has had several recent outbreaks of Blue-Green Algae so always be wary of the water conditions. There is also known debris in the water so be careful when using small boats or Jet skis. Of course, this area is inhabited by wildlife such as Snakes and Lizards, so be wary of venomous snakes such as Brown, tigers, and Red-bellied Black.

Camping and open fires are prohibited. Always carry your Victorian fishing license, FishingMad encourages ‘catch & release of all native species to help maintain the water quality within the lake however European Carp must not be returned.

Images of fish and stocking information supplied VFA and DEPI. All other images and videos shown on the Pykes Creek Fishing Guide are Fishing Mad originals. Thank you for visiting the Pykes Creek Fishing Guide. If you feel this location guide is missing key information or needs any corrections made, then please let us know by emailing our team at enquiries@fishingmad.com.au with specific details in the email. Please also feel free to share any fishing pictures you have from this location with us. Thank you