From saltwater to freshwater, there are several top fishing locations on the Sunshine Coast.
From saltwater to freshwater, there are several top fishing locations on the Sunshine Coast. Alexia Purcell

THE Sunshine Coast is home to several top fishing spots from freshwater locations such as Baroon Pocket, Lake Macdonald, Borumba, and Cooloolabin Dam to saltwater hotspots like Noosa, Mooloolah and Maroochy rivers, the open beaches and the offshore reefs.

Fish species found in these water ways vary from mackerel to trevally, Mangrove Jack and bream in the saltwater and yellowbelly, saratoga, perch and bass in the freshwater.

Finda has made fishing easy by collaborating information including waterway details, fish species, fishing tips and notes, recreational activities and an interactive location map on each of the top Sunshine Coast fishing spots.

Freshwater

Saltwater

Freshwater

Lake Macdonald

Lake Macdonald is located adjacent to Cooroy-Noosa Road in Cooroy. It is the town water supply for the Noosa district and is stocked with a variety of fish species.

Fish:

  • Mary River cod (stocked).
  • Bass (stocked).
  • Yellowbelly (stocked).
  • Saratoga (stocked).
  • Snub nosed gar (stocked).
  • Tandans (eel tailed catfish) Eels.
  • Spangled perch.

Notes:

Lake details:

  • Dam water course: Six Mile Creek.
  • Catchment area: 49km².
  • Lake surface area: 260ha.
  • -->-->Full supply capacity: 8,018ML.
  • Current capacity: 8,222ML (102.5 per cent full) at 25 May 2010.
  • -->-->Year complete: 1965.
  • Full supply waterline: 95m AHD.
  • Type of construction: earth and rockfill dam.
  • Length of dam wall: 501m.

Recreation:

  • Barbecue.
  • Boating (electric powered or manual).
  • Canoeing.
  • Horse riding.
  • Fishing.
  • Kayaking.
  • Picnicking.
  • Walking.

Borumba Dam

Borumba Dam is one of Queensland's most established lakes. It is located past Imbil at the end of Yabba Creek Road and its fishing draw card is the saratoga.

Fish:

  • Golden perch.
  • Silver perch.
  • Australian bass.
  • Mary River cod.
  • Saratoga.

Notes:

  • Ideal for fly fishing with saratoga and bass biting at sub-surface fly casts.
  • Baroon Pocket Dam fish tend to be quite aggressive and readily attack a well presented lure. Shallow to medium diving lures will work around the entire lake margin. Similarly, spinnerbaits and jig spinners and soft plastics do work around the edges and can even do well rigged unweighted and walked along the surface for saratoga and Australian bass.

Dam details:

  • Location: Yabba Creek at 31km upstream of junction with the Mary River, 50 km south of Gympie.
  • Catchment area: 465km².
  • Lake surface area: 480ha.
  • Full supply capacity: 45,952ML.
  • Current capacity: 46,145ML (100.4 per cent full) at 25 May 2010. -->-->
  • Year complete: stage one 1963; stage two 1997.
  • Full supply waterline: 135m AHD (above sea level).
  • Spillway level: 135m.
  • Type of construction: rockfill with impervious concrete slab on upstream face.
  • Length of dam wall: 343m.

Recreation:

  • Barbecue.
  • Boating (powered and non-powered).
  • Camping.
  • Fishing.
  • Canoeing.
  • Jet skiing.
  • Kayaking.
  • Picnicking.
  • Walking.
  • Water skiing.

Cooloolabin Dam

Cooloolabin Dam has not been officially stocked since the 80s and fish species in the dam are suggested to be yellowbelly and bass but that cannot be officially confirmed.

Fish:

  • Yellowbelly.
  • Bass.

Dam details:

  • Water course: Rocky Creek.
  • Location: 5km from Yandina.
  • Catchment area: 8.1km².
  • Lake surface area: 220ha.
  • -->-->Full supply capacity: 13,800ML.
  • Current capacity: 13,920ML (100.9 per cent full) at 25 May 2010.
  • -->-->Year complete: 1979.
  • Full supply waterline: 296m AHD (above sea level).
  • Outlet system: wet well intake tower.
  • Type of construction: uncontrolled ogee crest with central low flow section.
  • Length of dam wall: 243m.

Recreation:

  • Fishing (shore-based).
  • Picnicking.

Baroon Pocket

Situated 7km NE of Maleny and 5km SW of Montville, Baroon Pocket Dam - also known as Lake Baroon -  is stocked with bass, golden perch and the endangered Mary River cod. The Obi Obi Gorge below the dam is one of the few remaining places where Mary River cod are maintaining a wild population.

Fish:

  • Bass (stocked).
  • Golden perch (stocked).
  • Mary River cod (stocked).
  • Eels.
  • Tandans.
  • Spangled perch.

Notes:

  • The taking of Mary River cod is totally prohibited both in Baroon Pocket Dam (Lake Baroon) and in Obi Obi Creek, Obi Obi Gorge.
  • No lead sinkers are allowed in Lake Baroon.
  • No combustion engines are allowed on Lake Baroon however electric motors are allowed on dinghies but not on canoes. A maximum of 10 electric powered dinghies are allowed on the water at any one time.
  • A boating permit of $5 a day or $50 a year is required and are available on site.
  • A Stocked Impound Permit (SIP) is required to fish Baroon Pocket Dam.

Dam details:

  • Water course: Obi Obi Creek.
  • Catchment area: 72km².
  • Lake surface area: 380 ha at 100 per cent capacity.
  • -->-->Full supply capacity: 61,000 ML.
  • Current capacity: 60,685 ML (99.5 per cent full) at 25 May 2010.
  • -->-->Flood mitigation: 89,500ML.
  • Year complete: 1989.
  • Type of construction: earth and rock-fill embankment with a central clay core.
  • Length of dam wall: 370m.

Recreation:

  • Boating electric and non powered.
  • Fishing.
  • Swimming.
  • Picnicking.
  • Bush walking.

Ewen Maddock Dam

Built in 1973 across Addlington Creek, Ewen Maddock Dam is home to a variety of stocked fish, naturally breeding species and illegally introduced barramundi.

Fish:

  • Australian bass (stocked).
  • Yellowbelly (stocked).
  • Mary Rived cod (stocked).
  • Saratoga (stocked).
  • Tandans.
  • Eels.
  • Spangled perch.

Notes:

  • There have been reports of barramundi being captured in Ewen Maddock Dam. These would almost certainly have been illegally introduced into the lake.
  • Fishing is restricted to bank angling or paddle/wind powered canoes, kayaks or boats.
  • No propeller driven vessels should be used here due to the noxious weed, Cabomba.

Details:

  • Location: Addlington Creek, about 3km upstream of Bruce Hwy.
  • Catchment area: 21km².
  • Lake surface area: 370ha.
  • Full supply capacity: 16,587ML.
  • Current Capacity: 16,587 ML (100.0 per cent full) at 25 May 2010.
  • Year complete: 1982.
  • Full supply waterline: 25m AHD.
  • Outlet system: uncontrolled ogee crest.
  • Type of construction: zoned earthfill embankment.
  • Length of dam wall: 660m.
-->-->-->-->

Recreation:

  • Barbecue.
  • Bird watching.
  • Boating (non-powered).
  • Canoeing.
  • Fishing.
  • Horse-riding.
  • Kayaking.
  • Mountain bike riding.
  • Picnicking.
  • Sailing.
  • Swimming (designated areas).
  • Walking.

Information sourced from the SEQ Water website and Sweetwater Fishing website.

Satlwater

Noosa River


View Noosa River in a larger map

The Noosa River offers great estuary fishing and is renowned for its populations of trevally, Mangrove Jack and bass. From time to time, barramundi are also caught in the Noosa River.

Fish:

  • Trevally.
  • Mangrove Jack.
  • Barrumundi.
  • Bass.
  • Saratoga.
  • Tarpon.
  • Tailor.
  • Flathead.
  • Mackerel (Laguna Bay).

Notes:

  • Noosa River is ideal for chasing tarpon on fly or Mangrove Jack in the snags. Trevally, tailor and flathead also inhabit the area and bar and are best caught using plastics and tuna and mackerel can be caught on a light line out in Laguna Bay.
  • Wild bass can be found in the upper reaches of the river system.

River details:

  • Total area: 854km.  
  • Stream network length: 1,505km.     
  • Dominant land uses: native bush, conservation area, grazing.   
  • Headwaters/upper catchment located in Great Sandy National Park.
  • The Noosa River is a largely intact coastal lagoon system.
  • No point sources discharge into the Noosa River.
  • Urban areas concentrated around lower estuarine reaches and occupy less than three per cent of the total catchment; extensive land clearing around the populated areas.

Recreation:

  • Fishing.
  • Water skiing (in designated areas).
  • Picnicking.
  • Swimming.
  • Barbecue.
  • Boating (powered and non-powered).
  • Kayaking.
  • Canoeing.
  • Walking.

Maroochy River


View Maroochy River in a larger map

The Maroochy River is a larger yet shallow river system with a number of deep holes that offer exceptional fishing such as the cod hole, south of the Maroochy River Bridge.

Fish:

  • Flathead.
  • Cod.
  • Sand whiting.
  • Mulloway.
  • Mangrove Jack.
  • Golden trevally.
  • Silver trevally.
  • Giant trevally.
  • Tailor.
  • Bass.

Notes:

  • In the shallows flathead and sand whiting can be found, mulloway in the deep holes around the mouth of the river and Mangrove Jack in the tributaries and rock bars.
  • Land based fishing is possible on the southern and northern shores of the river mouth.
  • Wild bass in the upper reaches of the river system.

River details:

  • Total area: 630km².
  • Stream network length: 438km.
  • Dominant land uses: predominantly agriculture and urban land uses with some native bush.
  • Most of the catchment has been cleared for agricultural and urban uses.
  • Cooloolabin and Wappa dams impound streams above the South Maroochy River.

Recreation:

  • Boating (powered and non-powered).
  • Water skiing (in designated areas).
  • Picnicking.
  • Swimming.
  • Fishing.
  • Barbecue.
  • Kayaking.
  • Canoeing.
  • Walking.

Mooloolah River


View Mooloolah River in a larger map

The Mooloolah River is a relatively small meandering river offering excellent bream and whiting fishing.

Fish:

  • Bream.
  • Whiting.

Notes:

  • Whiting and bream are most prominent in the middle of the river. Bream can also be caught using lures around the pontoons, pylons and other structures along the lower reaches of the river.

River details:

  • Total area: 223km².
  • Stream network length: 322km
  • Dominant land uses: native bush, grazing, rural residential, managed forests and urban areas.Lower estuarine reaches extensively modified for urban development and canal estates.
  • Ewen Maddock Dam drains into the Mooloolah River.
  • Riparian vegetation in the upper catchment remains in good condition.

Recreation:

  • Camping.
  • Fishing.
  • Picnicking.
  • Walking.
  • Boating (powered and non-powered).
  • Kayaking.
  • Canoeing.

Reefs (Noosa to Caloundra)


View Sunshine Coast reefs in a larger map

The Sunshine Coast has a reef system that runs from Caloundra to north of Noosa. These reef systems provide a variety of species such as snapper to perch, emperor and three types of mackerel.

Fish:

  • Snapper.
  • Spanish mackerel.
  • Spotty mackerel.
  • School mackerel.
  • Pearl perch.
  • Spangled emperer.
  • Sweetlip.
  • Cobia.
  • Parrot fish.
  • Coral trout.
  • Maori cod.

Notes:

  • Snapper is most abundant in winter and Spanish, spotty and school mackerel in summer.

Recreation:

  • Boating (powered and non-powered).
  • Fishing.

Beaches (Double Island Point to Caloundra)

The number of gutter formations along the stretches of beach between Caloundra and Double Island Point make ideal fishing platforms.

Fish:

  • Tailor.
  • Yellow-fin bream.
  • Mulloway.
  • Jew.
  • Whiting.
  • Dart.
  • Flathead.

Notes:

  • Tailor are plentiful in the winter months.
  • In summer, whiting, dart and flathead are in abundance.
  • Teewah and Rainbow are renowned for tailor, whiting and dart although access is only possible with a 4WD.

 Recreation:

  • Swimming.
  • Camping (in some areas).
  • Boating (powered and non-powered).
  • Surfing.
  • Picnicking.
  • Walking.

Information sourced from the Sunshine Coast Regional Council website and River to Reef website.

Topics:  fishing outdoor-living

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