Equipment and rules
Rules for Gillhams Fishing Resorts
Please read these rules carefully and if you disagree with them then please do not fish here.
If you take care of the fish, you give others who follow behind you the chance to catch specimen fish in pristine condition.
Everyone who fishes here will have a fishing guide close at hand to assist at whatever level you require. Please listen to them and take note of what they tell you, as their decision on rigs and fish care is final.
All our staff here have English lessons, but they enjoy trying to learn more from you, so if there is a misunderstanding please be patient. Should you find this unacceptable, please speak to them in Thai!
Please tell us if you have a target species in mind, as if not we will set you up two rods to target all species as we see fit on the given day and conditions. Remember we live and work here full time, so we are in tune with the going baits and methods.
Before starting to fish we will set your drags to the best settings, but remember that during the heat of the day drag settings tighten, so we recommend you constantly check their settings. We strongly advise you not to attempt to backwind these fish, as they make incredibly strong, fast runs. Some of the most experienced anglers in the world have fished for our fish, and they all agree it is virtually impossible to fish in this way.
When a fish is ready for netting our guides will perform this task, and the fish will then be retained for as long as is necessary for the fish to recover. This is the time you must remove your watch, rings etc, and get your camera ready and work out what angle to take your pictures from. Our guide will tell you when you can enter the water, if you wish, but this is at your own risk.
No fish are allowed to be taken onto the bank. When advised please take your pictures as quickly as possible. Keep the fish as low as you can to the water, and do not put your hands near the fish's gills or mouths – many of our fish have sharp spikes and plates, so listen to the guide, and do not under any circumstances attempt to lift the fish on your own – listen to the guide and take his advice at all times.
We only weigh fish here if they are a potential record. We decide if a fish is a potential record and if it is safe to weigh the fish, and our decision is final. The fish here are so big it risks their lives to weigh them. We have many fish in excess of 100lb and weighing them can damage their internal organs. We have been farming and handling these fish for so long we are never more than 5lb in 100lb out in our estimations. Even in the case of the world record Mekong weighed here – we knew it would break the old record, which it did by 7lb, and which I think you will agree showed how close we are in estimates. We have been working with various fishery research groups who have helped design a cradle type sling similar to the ones that move dolphins, and this cradle will weigh fish more safely, but we still see no point in risking the lives of the biggest, rarest fish in the world. Arapaima die if you bend them the wrong way, plus they suffer heart attacks due to stress, and all the catfish die if you push their stomachs inwards too far. We lose the odd one on photos when the client doesn’t listen to our instructions. Our carp over 100lb are 50 years old and we will not subject them to undue stress just for a pound or two either way.
All fish will be returned as soon as possible if the fish is stressed, and our guides are instructed to return the fish immediately without a photo to ensure the fish's wellbeing. We will not sacrifice a fish for a photo the fish's welfare takes priority at all times. Our decision on when to release a fish is final.
All anglers are supplied with a reasonable amount of free bait per day as follows: One bucket of pellet weighing approximately five kilo additional pellet charged at 250 baht per kilo.Sea fish dead baits 1x ½kg pack per day, additional ½kg packs are 45 baht per pack. Maize 35 baht per kilo. Groundbait (method mix) one x 8kg bowl 300 baht per bowl. We do not provide boilies in our price, but they are available at 350 baht per kg, and pop-ups are 100 baht per tub. All additives, flavours, dips and enhancers etc to be provided by the angler at their own cost. No outside baits are allowed unless they are of a recognized brand name. Bulk purchase of bait are price in 20kilo bags; pellet 4,500 baht per 20kg, boilies 6,500 baht per 20kg.
All anglers are supplied with two rods only one fish bait can be in used at any time, should you wish to use two rods baited with fish we charge an additional 1,000 baht per day. Third fishing rod, 1,000 baht per day. Light rod for catching small fish such as Java barb, 300 baht per day.
Strictly only fish baits supplied by us to be used.
RULES OF THE FISHERY
These rules are final – if you do not agree with them please do not come here to fish. If you abuse these rules you will be asked to leave the fishery with no reimbursement. Remember the fish's welfare takes priority at all times.
1. Do not start fishing without informing a senior member of staff. We must know at all times when you are fishing to ensure your and the fish's safety.
2. To ensure our fish's wellbeing no bait shall be used at the fishery without a senior member of staff's approval. We supply a suitable amount of bait for free after which we charge at cost. You are not restricted to quantity, however if we feel you are using too much and affecting our water balance or others fishing you will be told to stop.
3. No live or dead bait to be brought to the fishery, all live baits are banned if you are caught abusing this rule you will be asked to leave with no refund.
4. No treble hooks or multi-hook rigs. All hooks must be barbless or have the barbs flattened.
5. No wire traces, All hooklinks not provided by us must be shown to us and approved prior to use, and all main line must have tube protection or similar to a minimum of 900mm in length.
6. To avoid deep hooking no free-lined baits are allowed. All rods must be used with bite indicators or floats, and all rigs must pull free under light pressure – strictly no fixed rigs allowed.
7. You are welcome to use your own tackle, which will be checked on arrival. Minimum 5lbs test curve rods, and large heavy-duty reels spooled with minimum 35lb test mono, or 100lb test braid.
8. Fly fishing is allowed using minimum 10-weight rods and lines.
9. Warm, temperate fish species suffer more than their cooler water cousins if you play them too hard or too soft, one firm strike is sufficient do not strike more than once, please take advice from our senior guides when you are fighting a fish. They will advise you how much pressure to apply to the fish and on your clutch (drag) settings.
10. All our fish are checked by our guides prior to release, and they will treat any wounds and inject any species that require this treatment as recommended by the Fisheries Department of Thailand. Do not under any circumstances release a fish without our approval.
11. No swimming or wading – only enter the water for fish care upon the guide's instructions and at your own risk.
12. No litter to be left at any time including cigarette ends and tea bags, use the litter bins provided. No glass allowed around the lake.
13. Do not use the boats under any circumstances.
14. A responsible adult must accompany all juniors under 18 at all times. Gillhams Fishing Resorts accept no liability for juniors whilst on our premises.
15. No retaining fish will be tolerated.
16. No fires including barbeques.
17. No radios unless with headphones fitted, and no loud and unruly behavior will be tolerated. This includes calling across the lake.
18. Do not leave rods unattended at any time. This includes being in a neighbouring fishing area. Also do not leave baited hooks in or out of the water, additional rods must be wound in when playing a fish.
19. Please report at once all dead and injured fish or any fish acting in an unusual manner. We would rather have a wasted call than a dead fish. Please also report any abuse of the rules to the management.
20. All drink and food must be purchased on site, no outside food or drinks are allowed to be brought on site.
21. No lures or spinners allowed.
22. Under no circumstances will an arapaima be lifted from the water – do not attempt to lift one. Listen to our guides’ advice at all times.
23. Fishing is only allowed from the designated fishing areas; if in doubt ask senior management prior to fishing.
SHOULD YOU KILL A FISH DUE TO ABUSING THESE RULES YOU WILL BE CHARGED ITS FULL REPLACEMENT COST AT A PRICE DEFINED BY US OR OUR AGENTS.
Please read the following information on what is expected of you and what to expect from us.
Please note as an angler you have come here fishing, so you are expected to make your own bait balls and bait up your own fishing area. You are also expected to cast your own rods out and strike your own fish.
People in the past have been upset when they can’t claim a world record fish, but if someone else touches your rod either casting, striking or playing a fish your record claim is null and void!
The fishing guide’s jobs do not entail the following, but if they have time they will sometimes help…
Making your groundbait balls or putting them out in the lake for you.
Depth and feature finding: you are supplied a rod for this if you ask.
Casting or striking your rods.
Our guide’s jobs are as below…
To offer advice and to tie and make sure your rigs are safe.
To net your fish and tell you how to handle them correctly.
To administer any health care the fish requires.
We do not supply one-on-one guiding. Our guides assist all anglers on the one stretch of bank they are assigned to. Should you hook a fish and the guide is busy elsewhere, please blow on the whistle provided.
Tipping is not compulsory; it is your decision. All our Thai workers are paid salaries way above what they can earn elsewhere. Please before tipping one particular worker think about all the others behind the scenes who helped make your day what it was, be they cleaners, gardeners maintenance team or the odd job person. If you are going to tip we would prefer you put your donation in the tip box marked resort staff in the restaurant, as these tips are evenly distributed to all our Thai team at the end of each month, and this system makes it fair for all.
All our English fishing guides work on a tips-only basis. They get their food and keep but no salary – they rely on your generosity for the service they gave you. Again please do not feel tipping is compulsory, but it is very much appreciated.
After reading these rules and proceeding to fish you will have agreed to abide by the rules and accept their contents. You will also have accepted that Gillhams Fishing Resorts and their employees accept no responsibility for your safety in or around the lake and especially whilst handling the fish. You will be asked to sign our book as an agreement to these terms prior to fishing.
Thank you for reading the above; when visiting us here at Gillhams should you have any suggestions on how we can improve our services, please tell us.
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