Mark with a rohu, carp, also known as the Indian carp
Our first session at the Phuket Fishing Park was a little dfferent from previous years. Because of various changes at the lake there is now no restaurant facility. This means you need to stock up on the day's provisions....especially water as it can be a long, hot day! it's also very worthwhile bringing a couple of large rubbish bags to take all your junk home. Of course this goes without saying but because there are very limited rrubbish collecting facilities, customers (not us!!) will just chuck their stuff on the ground. We are going to make an effort to clear any rubbish up even if it does not belong to us and bring it back to the house for collection.
I have often seriously considered buying into this lake. I would very much like to take it over now but unfortunately I believe us Westerners have very little chance of a running a successful business here in Phuket. Communication is virtually impossible between the land owner and prospective tenant (the lake land would never be sold, of that I am sure) and whilst I believe any investment I would be required to make would be initially very welcome I do believe I would soon lose everything and been thrown off the site! It's a shame because this is a great lake with amazing fishing....
Anyhow one advantage was that there was hardly any other anglers there so we were able to choose our favourite swim and settled down to be rewarded with a lively run of carp, catfish and pacu throughout the day.
We were using the tackle provided by the Thai House sponsors Grauvell along with Shimano catfish rods. The tackle is nice and it's all free for my customers to use. It is not the best or most expensive tackle in the world...please feel free to bring your own from UK if you prefer better quality or tackle that you know you can trust and which will be used ONLY by you.
The main thing to say is regards the trace line strength. Although this is freshwater fishing these fish are incredibly powerful and some, like the pacu, have viscious teeth. Forget about the frehwater fishing you have experienced in the UK...think of these fish as more like a 30lb+ tope....they are crazy. You will experience the most amazing battles ever.....and on this, our first trip of the year with the fish even crazier than usual, we upped our traceline to 60lb!! And we needed it!
We use very strong thick-shanked Gamakatsu hooks. The size rating is like sea fishing because as the size numbers increase (we were using size 11 but then went up to size 15) so the hook size increases but there is no -/0 after the size as in our sea fishing hook sizes in the UK.
The biggest Gamakatsu hook size is a 19 which Richard Heaseman used on the 90kg arapaima he caught (next blog write-up) at Mike Baileys Exotic Fishing Thailand two days later. In fact one of the size 19's snapped in half under the pressure from the fish...so, although these hooks are extremely strong the fish are even stronger.
Anyhow...under the 'fishy photo's' ub heading there's a few photo's our this trip...featuring Mark Butland from Porchester, Hants, and Richard Heaseman from Devizes, Wilts.