Lake Mulwala formed after Yarrawonga Weir was built on the Murray River in 1939 for irrigation.
The lake has an area of 4400ha when full.
It is now one of the few Murray waterways where cod are dominant (besides carp) in catches.
Most cod are fairly small, but a few of more than 1m taken each year.
Yellowbelly are also caught, along with redfin, trout cod, silver perch and trout.
The former river channel is lined with large dead red gums and tributary channels usually have smaller trees, making it easy to find drop-offs.
The channel exceeds 10m deep in places.
Cod are often found along the channel edges.
Many tree trunks remain from when the lake was formed and are located just underwater. Damaged propellers are common.
The biggest cod tend to be taken in the deeper parts of the lake.
Popular spots include the Yellow Trail, a tributary of the Murray that heads to Kyffins Reserve boat ramp from The Horseshoe.
The Yellow Trail is marked with yellow paint and buoys at The Horseshoe and red and green paint on dead trees as you go further in.
The Yellow Trail is about 3m to 5m deep.
Kyffins Reserve has plenty of sunken timber.
The cleared section near the weir has plenty of submerged timber and holds cod, but the old river bed is hard to follow.
Fishing is best in warm weather, especially if you are using lures. Surface strikes can be had in summer.
Most shores on the lake are good for landbased fishing, especially those near the channel.
There are usually good numbers of shrimp that can be caught in a bait trap.
Other popular baits include bardi grubs and tinned corn kernels, yabbies and worms.
Lure choice depends on fishing style – deep divers are needed to probe deep channels, but during balmy summer and autumn evenings poppers and ultra-shallow lures can work well and provoke exciting surface strikes.
Yellowbelly will generally take the same lures as cod. Fish near cover such as willow trees or timber.
Mulwala is home to the annual Cod Classic event that has attracted up to around 3500 anglers, with a $1m+ prize pool.
Winning cod over the years have been around the metre mark.
Below the Yarrawonga Weir, cod action can be good, and the rare trout cod, macquarie perch and silver perch occasionally caught.
A 1m wind-chop is common on the lake, which can make life difficult or dangerous in small boats.
For more information about the upper Murray River, checkout this page.
Lake Mulwala boat ramps
The western section and main lake can be reached from Yarrawonga or Mulwala ramps.
There is a sand ramp at Kyffins Reserve.
Majors Ck Boat Ramp is on the Murray Valley Highway on Majors Ck Road.
The Bundelong ramp is at the Junction of the Murray and Ovens Rivers.
Returning at night can be particularly hazardous because of all the tree stumps.
Lake Mulwala rules
The lake forms the border of two states. Anglers once needed to hold both NSW and Victorian fishing licences to fish the lake.
From September 1, 2004, NSW assumed control of recreational fishing in Lake Mulwala.
NSW rules apply to all of Lake Mulwala upstream from Yarrawonga Weir upstream to where the Ovens River enters the Murray, marked by the Bundalong boat ramp.
Only a NSW recreational fishing licence is required.
Victorian rules apply in Lake Hume.
NSW fishing laws apply to the whole of Murray River to the South Australian border, excluding the waters of Lake Hume.
Victorian fishing regulations apply in waters south of the Murray River.
For the latest rules information check this page.
Fishing gear for the Murray RiverBy Wiki Fishing Spots staff
Firstly, a lure desnagger/retriever will quickly pay for itself. If you are fishing properly you WILL get snagged. The simplest type is simply dropped down on a cord ... eBay link here.
If you want a fair dinkum true blue Aussie lure desnagger, try this one ... eBay link here.
For rods and reels, a 3-6kg spin outfit is ideal for most Murray River bait and lure fishing. See eBay listing here. If you are chasing big murray cod, you'll need something heavier.
Many types of soft plastics work on Murray fish, but these grubs are a good all-rounder ... eBay listing here.
Jig heads in various sizes are needed for most soft plastic lures, use the lightest heads that you can cast. See eBay listing here.
Floats are useful for suspending a bait. The polystyrene floats in the following listing are slid onto the line and a stopper is placed above the float to set the depth fished. Always use the smallest size for the conditions and bait you are using. See eBay listing here. Clear bubble floats are preferable for Murray fishing when the water is clear.
Ball sinkers are ideal for river bait fishing, using a running sinker rig. See eBay listing here.
Hooks up to around 1/0 are ideal for the Murray bait fishing, with fine-gauge hooks best for livebait fishing. See eBay listing here.
Email us any corrections, additions, pictures or video here.
Some external videos filmed around Lake Mulwala are featured below.
Lake Mulwala cod on surface lures
Lake Mulwala cod fishing
Lake Mulwala cod fishing
Lake Mulwala when empty
Never get caught without a replacement rod tip again