There is a guest book at the Lodge that all guests are encouraged to complete after their stay. It always makes excellent reading to see what other guests have to say and their fishing stories. Below is some testimonials from some of our guests.
Had a great time at the Lodge earlier this week. The mates and I were impressed with how clean the Lodge (top marks to Sandy) was and the services/facilities provided. Let me know if there are any excess phone charges and I'll arrange to pay them. The fishing started off well Sunday arvo but went quite from Tuesday morning after rain on Monday afternoon/night. The rain continued Tuesday with Georges Creek and other small creeks discharging dirty water and dropping the temperature in the river enough to put the fish off the bite. We still managed 52 bass with the biggest going 45.5 cm (42.5 fork). There were a lot of small bass under 30cm in the river but still managed fish over 40cm each session. Most fish were caught on deep diving Jackall Chubbies, with a few on surface lures (Taylor Made and Sammy 65). We had a flick up Georges Creek for a couple of hours on Monday arvo (in the rain) after getting in touch with Neil Booth. We caught half a dozen small fish and one over 40cm. It was worth doing as the creek is such a beautiful spot to fish. We didn't venture upstream of the Lodge as my mate with the 4WD wasn't comfortable doing the crossing. Neil Booth said the crossing was OK and offered to take us up in his truck and drop us at Broads Crossing. We didn't take him up on the offer, but probably should have in hindsight as the river level rose throughout Tuesday. I have attached a few pics of our fish caught. The rain didn't bother us as we sank a few beers on the Tuesday arvo in a wonderful setting. Thanks Dave for all the info on the fishing. We will be back next year!!
P.S. - The standard joke during the trip was about Malcome Naden hanging around the area and drinking our beer whilst we were out fishing. It was ironic he was caught the day after we left !!
When a mate suggested that we drive 1.5hrs west of Kempsey and try our hand at Bass fishing on the upper Macleay river I must say I was a little dubious, being a salt water fisho through and through I had never entertained the thought of freshwater fishing, but what the hell, a few days away doing any sort of fishing was better than working. We booked into Bass Lodge, packed the car and headed off for 4 days.
The drive from Sydney to Kempsey was uneventful and then we made our way west and I must admit the drive along the Macleay river from Bellbrook was enough to get this salt water fisho excited at the thought of throwing a few lures around.
By the time we pulled up at the entrance to Bass Lodge it was just before dark, we unloaded the car in record time and did not even enter the lodge, said hello to our hosts Dave and Mike and as we were rigging up they made the comment “you boys must be keen” headed straight down to one of the many streams that flow into the river to try and catch my first Bass before dark.
After a short stroll through some truly magnificent looking country we found a small pool that looked very very fishy, 3 casts later with a small diving lure and bang “I’m up I yelled” I was very surprised at the fight these fish had in them, and before long I had my first Bass on the bank with a grin from ear to ear, by this time it was getting dark and we decided to head back have a BBQ a few beers and work out the plan of attack for tomorrow.
We returned to Bass Lodge and I was amazed at the size and quality of the lodge, and it reminded me of when I lived in Canada of all the beautiful log cabins made from cedar at the foot of the lakes, Bass lodge is pure heaven and comes highly recommended. We cranked up the BBQ and quizzed Dave and Mike on where we should fish tomorrow and picked there brain about the lodge and its surroundings. We then retired to the spa with a few cold beers and it wasn’t long before I was in a very comfortable bed with the alarm set and ready to spend a whole day exploring and fishing.
Its amazing when the alarm goes off for work I hit the snooze 3, maybe 4 times, when the alarm goes off for fishing I’m up in a instant, its still dark a cup off coffee and back to the same stream as yesterday, I was total amazement and the magnificent country we were walking through as the sun came up over the hills, and not another person insight, how good is this place! We ventured further with the idea of walking up stream and fishing on the way back, well that didn’t happen, as only a fisho would know you just cant walk past a good fishing spot and what was supposed to be a couple of hours fishing turned into about 8 with some great 45+cm Bass being pulled from the some beautiful water, and there is a special felling about releasing these magnificent Big Bass to fight another day.
We headed back and I was amazed at how much distance we covered while fishing, back to the lodge for some lunch and then decided to head east to a to afeeder stream which comes with a guarantee from Dave of big bass. This water did not disappoint, well it did in a way, and being busted off second cast by a massive fish was both disappointing and exciting at the same time, and it happened more than once, some of these fish must have been well over 55cm judging by how hard they ran and the amount of line they pulled. We still landed plenty of quality fish and I must say I have never had the pleasure of fishing in such amazing surroundings.
The next 2 days were spent tossing both hard bodies and soft plastic lures in and around this magnificent waterway catching and releasing what must have been well over 40 fish and did not see 1 other fisherman the whole time. And all this and we did not even use the canoes provided at the lodge for fishing the Macleay river itself, we spent all our time walking the creeks, the mighty Macleay will be done next time, believe me there will be a next time as this salt water fisho is now addicted to fresh water fishing and cant wait to hit Bass lodge again and fish the main river and would even like to the nearby dams and Styx river for some local trout.
Again thanks to our hosts Dave and Mike for the local knowledge and the hospitality they provided us. The Bass Lodge comes highly recommended even if you’re not a fisherman you will be as amazed as I was at the service the Bass Lodge provides set in some of the most beautiful country I have had the pleasure of visiting.