Reg and I grabbed an easy lunch of vegetables and cheese on toast then rushed out the door with the dog to head off in the troopy and enjoy the glorious autumn sunshine.
The dam caught 5 of Reg’s prawn baits and he had some great exercise casting the rod. I even saw him do a mighty fine pirouette with one cast into the water. Not bad at all for my 70 year old fisherman.
We headed West from Shepparton along the Midland Highway until we reached the Tatura, Rushworth Road then headed inland towards Rushworth until we reached Waranga Basin.
Warranga (the aboriginal name) has an interesting history with a pastoralist Gunn established his squatting run in the area surrounding the swamp lands.
Gold was discovered near Waranga Swamp in 1853
The dam was completed in 1915 to irrigate the Western Goulburn Valley that we now call the fruit bowl of Victoria.
We pulled into the first carpark that had a picnic grounds toilet block sign near the dam wall. There were signs everywhere saying no dogs allowed. Indigo was not impressed with that so we moved on. The water there was open and very choppy with waves. There was no shade near the water’s edge so it would not have suited us for a daytime fishing spot at this time of year.
Further along we found a beautiful spot, there was a sealed road with a sign saying ‘no dogs allowed and an unmade road forked off that with advisory signs but none forbidding dogs. We took that road and found ourselves on a spit of land between the actual dam and what would normally be swampland. Today with the high water level had become an extension of the dam. Reg had a great time fishing, lots of shade and Indigo and I got some exercise. There were no public toilets here though down the road a bit, along that ‘no dogs area road’ there are toilets.
Further along if you take the Goornong to Murchison Road and turn into Harrismans Road, Harrismans Point has a boat ramp and good fishing. We will try this area next time we head out for a fishing exercising trip. I did pack the paints in the car but the reality is, I needed the exercise more than I needed to paint so that was the best use of my time.
Waranga Basin in the Goulburn River valley near Murchison covers an area of 58.5 square kilometres at full capacity and it was beyond full capacity today. The weir gates were open with water flowing fast over the dam outlets and the neighbouring grazing land and billabongs at flood level. The surrounding land was beautifully green. Cattle standing on high ground suggesting those green grasslands were water laden.
There are two caravan parks in the area and I know some people free camp down near Harrimans Point. I don't know if this is a legal free camp site.
The best fishing is from a boat at dusk. Wear loads of insect repellent though.