G'day fishos. Fires are at the top of everyone's mind at the moment, and everyone's best wishes go out to all those affected both close to home and further afield.
The word "unprecedented" is being used a fair bit, and rightly so by the looks of it.
What do we look forward to from a fisho's point of view?
Well, in the immediate future a lot of fishing destinations are off limits because of road closures and threats of fire in areas we might like to visit.
In the not too distant future these areas may open up, but I'm sure there'll be many fishos too nervous to head there.
In the next few months things will settle down and get back to some sort of normality, but a big threat to a lot of our favourite destinations is going to be the ash that's left behind.
When we eventually get some rain it will run into our streams and rivers and - depending on ratio of ash to water - there's every chance we'll see fish kills due to the ash taking oxygen out of the water. Smaller streams will be most affected, you would presume.
AT A GLANCE
Dartmouth (52 per cent)- is one of those destinations not too many have been heading for.
A couple of mates and I did our traditional overnighter on New Year's Eve to see if we could manage a Macquarie perch and a yabby or two.
I'm sad to report we only caught one decent Macca between us. Obviously not by me, otherwise I would have said "I caught one and nobody else did". So, in this case ''we'' caught one.
I'm happy to report we did manage a good bag of yabbies, with the hours of darkness being the go. We didn't try for trout at all.
Just keep in mind if you do get up there that navigating the lake can a bit of an issue with all that smoke.
Streams - are getting warmer, but still fishing OK. Again, it could definitely be an issue if you head in the wrong direction - so be sure you check out your destination re fires before you head off.
There's plenty of hoppers about, so bait shouldn't be an issue. Best bet is to drift them unweighted downstream, trout find them hard to resist.
Smaller cod streams - such as the Kiewa, Ovens and King are all fishing well, with plenty of action coming off the surface.
There's heaps of cicadas about and the fish are definitely switched on to them.
Any smaller surface lure is worth a crack, but smaller Pompadours, Halco Night Walkers or a custom-crafted Moonwalker are all smaller surface lures that probably match the hatch better than most.
The Bidgee - has been great too, with some monster cod being caught as well as good numbers of smaller fish. Again, all methods seem to be catching fish, so a trip to the Bidgee could be well worth your while.
Blowering (37.5) - is another destination that has been affected by fires and, again, I'd be checking with authorities before thinking of heading that way.
At time of writing, it was out of bounds.
Eucumbene (30.9), Jindabyne (79.6) and Tantangara (8.6) - are all in the same boat, but might be accessible next week hopefully.
Lake Hume (25 per cent) - picked up for lots of anglers this week, with some nice bags of reddies reported.
Tim Richardson, son Dylan and mate Mick Zanardo brought home 20 on Thursday morning with a couple of solid fish among them.
Most were caught on yabbies, but some were caught on soft vibes while fishing in just five metres of water.
There's also been other reports of vibes and worms doing some damage, so let's keep hoping they keep chewing and get more aggressive as the summer wears on.
The Murray - upstream of Lake Hume has been a bit of a no-go zone this week, and access to certain sections may still be limited. But the fish were moving prior to the fires.
I'd be checking on road closures if I was thinking of heading that way
The Murray - downstream of Lake Hume has been good when the river isn't dropping or has been stable for a period.
All sorts of lures have been catching cod, but chicken's hit seems to be accounting for quite a few of those caught on bait, as has cheese. If you're chasing a yella, use yabbs or worms.
Mulwala - has been a tad crowded, but not too bad if you get out into the shallows or fish at night.
There's still some very handy fish being caught, and it doesn't seem to matter if you're a bait fisho, troller, flicker or night fisho - there's fish coming in using most methods.
Anyhow, stay safe and just go out and wet a line to de-stress if you get the chance.