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Krabi newsletter July 2012

Hi to all our followers of the Gillhams Fishing Resorts reports on the fishing in Krabi. We only sell limited places here to avoid overcrowding, so please don’t delay and book for 2013. Spaces are filling up very fast but we still have spaces from now into September at reduced rates and special deals for September. Many dates October to January are fully booked, please check before making travel plans to avoid disappointment.

The rain gods have for once been on our side this month, as the drainage system diverting the stream around the new lake extension are underway. Despite severe weather warnings Krabi has missed the lot, with sunny dry days the works are back on schedule. We have been working dawn to dusk and got the worst area completed, the new area of lake will be dug in January, and hopefully this should be a three week job. Once completed the new area will be flooded and left to mature while we landscape. We will leave a causeway between the old lake and new addition until everything is settled and perfect, this will take around six months after which the central causeway will be removed and the lake will grow by three acres. The works will not disrupt fishing or the natural beauty of Gillhams, for those of you worrying about disruption to your holiday don’t, as all this work is being carried on behind the fence line. The weeks job of removing the causeway will be planned during a week not yet booked, we will be offering a 50% discount during this week and will send out a news flash with the date. Although machines will be working and some disturbance will be unavoidable, the fishing will be as good as ever. To repeat ourselves don’t worry your holiday will not be affected, and the final stage of joining the lake as one will not be done during a week already booked.

As July comes to an end and we roll into August we are getting ready for more filming work here by top names for television shows, two in September and one in December. As always we are not allowed to mention who or what fish species are involved, the filming and what they intend to shoot is going to be very interesting and obviously we are proud the film makers have chosen Gillhams. With all the TV coverage we are getting it just proves that Gillhams Fishing Resorts is the number one destination for fishing in Thailand, we will tell you once we get the OK when these shows will go live.

Talking about being the best freshwater fishing resort leads us into our latest achievement, Trip Advisor have awarded us their five star certificate of excellence award for 2012. We are very proud of this recognition of all our hard work to make Gillhams one of the very best fishing resorts in the world.

With all the hard work this month plus still being jet lagged from the Panama trip and the severe weather warnings, (that thankfully never materialized.) The maiden trip of HMS Gillhams is still waiting to happen, for sure in August we will be getting the new boat afloat, once we have sussed all the deserted islands and fishing spots we will be offering friends and regular client’s boat trips and hopefully some shark fishing! Plus the girls will at last get off our backs about Noah’s ark that sits in the car park and never goes to sea!

We also had a visit from Matt the Gardner this month as he came down to help train a few of the new gardeners here, the job took him longer than planned and he only managed a days fishing. Matt will be returning soon to get some serious fishing in Krabi done. It was nice for us to meet for the first time Matt junior Tyler who is a spitting image of his dad (poor little sod) it was also a nice break from the hectic Bangkok city life Matt now shares with his charming partner On.

Gillhams gripe; oh no the bit you love or hate is back!

First up sod all to do with fishing but something I need to get off my chest, why do so many people slag off our sportsmen and women? They sit at home scoffing cakes and guzzling beer sprawled on the sofa, criticizing people who train hard and sacrifice a lot to represent the country they are proud of. I am sick of seeing comments on places like Facebook, about how the athlete didn’t try and condemning them for not winning a medal. Do these jerks really believe that someone would go to the Olympics and not try their best, if they got behind these people and encouraged them maybe they would lift their game. We win silver and the poor athlete gets slagged because it wasn’t a gold, a bronze is considered a failure. Just to get the chance to represent your country is an achievement, trying your damdest is the best you can do and everyone should be proud of that person for trying. But no we get stupid comments about their lack of commitment and not trying, these athletes are competing on the worlds stage at the highest level, maybe they are not as good as the winner but they tried! Britain is a small country so we have less athletes to choose from, but the ones we have are our best and they have hearts and pride. Most of these athletes have regular jobs and dedicate their spare time to represent their country, they travel miles to train and get little support from the country they represent. Here in Thailand we had two girls in weightlifting one earned a silver, the other missed a Bronze by a kilo. They will both return home heroes because the people know they gave it their all, in GB they would be criticized for not trying! The Chinese do well because apart from being a big country with a huge population, they see a kid with talent and take them away from their home and family and train them like robots to the highest level. In my opinion this is wrong to sacrifice someone’s life at all costs to be no1, in China the public do not have the right to criticize or complain. In the world outside of communism our athletes have the choice to follow what they choose and freedom of speech, our athletes train to the best standards available to them, they represent their country for pride and give 101% effort for their country. If there was a medal for a country that puts its athletes down, and criticizes their every effort for sure GB would win gold! Then we get the knobs that go to the gym keep in trim and criticize the athletes, if they are so bloody good why are they not in the Olympics? Selection is open to all so instead of slating the ones who are selected why not train harder themselves, these pratts should look at themselves and realize they are the failures! I am the first to criticize the politics and craziness of what was once Great Britain, the powers that be have let us all down and allowed GB to become a joke country. But the athletes are trying their hardest and giving it their all out of pride for their country, whatever their colour or parents origin I am proud to see them represent my homeland. I love to watch the Olympics and see these fine people from around the world giving their all, I cheer on every one of them and love to see an underdog raise their game and win. I feel for the poor sods who don’t win a medal, but at the end of the day they tried and gave their all which surely is all any of us can ask of them. From me I say raise your glasses to each and every competitor, win or lose we should all be proud of every last one of them. Just by competing they are doing more for their country than most of us ever will. RESPECT! Rant over J

So onto more fishy matters, no sod it I am on my soapbox and will probably cost us potential punters or repeat bookings! Its all been said before about only getting a small fish of 50lbs, or the 100lb fish wasn’t 200lb. Oops here I go I will get back to the fishing related gripe next month, time to stop and move onto the fishing in Thailand.

July has been rather quite on anglers but the fishing in Thailand has been good this month, with a total of 30 different species coming out and nearly 900 fish landed. The Siamese carp are certainly piling on the weight, with several fish over 100lb, plus plenty of others between 70 and 90lb. God knows what the next few years will bring but we are sure within three years we will have at least 40 carp over the magic ton, the free holiday offered for the IGFA world record Siamese carp must go very soon! Put this with one of the three known arapaima over 400lb making an appearance this month and others over 300lb, July has been exceptional for these specie but the Mekong’s have slowed down, July is always quite for these bruisers as they prefer hot settled weather. With the way the weather is at the moment we are expecting a Mekong party to kick off at any time, and how long before the record Mekong tumbles again. Some of our rarer species made guest appearances again this month, Sean hooked and lost a tarpon estimated at mid 30lb. Now they will be interesting in a couple of years when they reach 100lb, having just caught a tarpon of 120lb in Panama giving me a 100lb + tarpon from two oceans, the Thailand 100lb club is a target I have set myself!

The total catches this month are as follows: 896 fish of 30 species, made up as follows: 49 arapaima to 400lb, seven arawana to 12lb, six alligator gar to 44lb, 232 Amazon redtail catfish to 80lb, one Amazon stingray of 4lb, 211 Asian redtail catfish to 47lb, 27 black pacu to 42lb, four big head carp to 27lb, one black shark carp of 10lb, one Chao Phraya catfish of 70lb, three Chinese seerfish to 11b, one firewood catfish of 15lb, three giant stingray to 120lb, four giant Gourami to 10lb, one hovens carp of 6lb, 33 Julian’s golden carp to 47lb, 29 Mekong catfish to 165lb, six mrigal carp to12lb, twelve rohu carp to 16lb, six ripsaw catfish to 25lb, 19 spotted featherback to 12lb, 198 Siamese carp to 105lb, eight shovel nosed spotted sorubim to 42lb, five shovel nosed tiger catfish to 12lb, two striped catfish to 17lb, six striped snakehead to 4lb, eleven wallago attu to 27lb, four wallago leeri to 20lb and two zungaro (jau) to 30lb.

First up we had the return of Matt and Claire Skinner who have relocated to the Philippines and created a windsurf and diving resort in Boracay Matt was always off fishing with Stuart many years ago, so enjoys meeting up wetting a line and talking about the old days. Plus ribbing poor Matt’s dear old dad Dave who came over with his better half Margret. She spends most her holiday keeping party animal Dave out of trouble. Margret and Dave arrived a few days ahead of Matt and Claire, Dave got a head start on the fishing and landed a fine arapaima of 270lb before Matt could wet a line. Plus he got some serious partying in with Stuart, this was supposed to be a warm up the main event as Matt’s other half Claire is known world wide for her drinking and partying. Matt has always been a quite bloke who likes a drink but never gets outrageous, Claire seems to have gone the same way with old age but Stuart and Dave made up for it! The day Matt and Claire arrived they found Dave with a massive hangover so took advantage and started fishing straight away. During their stay Matt managed to top his dads arapaima when he caught one of 300lb. In total Dave went on to catching 41 fish of eleven species with Mekong to 140lb, redtail catfish to 70lb and a 35lb Julian golden carp. Matt wasn’t to be beat though and by the end of his stay Matt had landed 44 fish of nine species and not only did he beat his dads arapaima he also toppled the Julian’s golden carp with one of 37lb, plus Siamese carp to 65lb and another arapaima of 250lb.

Another returning angler this month was Geoff Akroyd a retired fire chief who is soon to become a guide here at Gillhams for the coming high season. Geoff is a cracking bloke who takes his fishing seriously; he will be an asset to the Gillhams guiding team and hopefully keep the younger party animals in line. Plus at last Stuart will have another old fart to keep him company, as the old fella is finding it tough keeping up with myself and the other guides and has been seen sneaking home before the magical 6am party end time. This trip Geoff was only able to make a couple of days while house sitting for a friend in Singapore. The main target for the trip was an arapaima of which he caught at 250lb, also catching two Siamese carp 70lb+, redtail catfish to 68lb, and Julian’s golden carp to 40lb. In Total Geoff landed 15 fish of five species.

Terry Poppa Eustace from Gold Label Tackle made it out once again, supplying the whole lake with laughs. Especially when falling into the lake in the dark and coming up from the water looking like a rabbit caught in car head lights, he then followed it up by hooking the umbrella while attempting to cast. Gillhams has become Poppa’s second home, he is like a dad to us all and every visit just gets better. Terry makes everyone laugh with his jokes and antics like falling in the lake, we welcome every trip and have always worried that once he achieved his target of a Siamese carp over 100lb he would stop coming. Terry’s luck however did change, especially when landed two 90lb Siamese carp and followed it up with his first over 100lb. That’s it he said my target is complete and I can now stop coming fishing in Thailand, ha ha this lasted two weeks as he has just booked to return in September! Terry went onto catch 26 fish of five species and even gave us one more laugh when striking into a fish and not clicking the bait runner over, leaving his spool firing line off in all directions.

Jut Cole another Gillhams regular and friend made yet another trip out this year. Jut’s main target was getting up in the morning after a night out, which he managed on the odd occasion. He went on to catching some good fish with lots of different species. Some of Juts species were ripsaw catfish, Julian golden carp, rohu, mrigal and Gourami and he also managed arapaima to 280 and Siamese carp to 90lb. In total Jut caught 51 fish of 13 species. Juts next trip is either at the end of this year or the start of 2013 where he’s looking at taking a year out and staying here guiding and fishing in his spare time.

Shaun Nickels made his return trip this year and was happy to find somebody smaller then him after meeting guide Wee Steve. On arrival Shaun told the guides his main target species were Siamese carp, Julian golden carp and arapaima of which all three targets were achieved he also caught a Julian’s golden carp just shy of 50lb. Shaun then went on to become one of only a few people to catch a firewood catfish here in Krabi, the firewood catfish is a pretty rare Amazon fish that has been known to exceed 100lb in the wild. In total Shaun caught 19 fish of nine species.

First time visitors to Gillhams Mark Weaver and brother in law Will Lee (His parents had some sense of humor) made a trip out here after booking through Angling Direct holidays. Now Willie sorry Will Lee was said to always catch the biggest fish on all his trips and here was no exception when he landed a monster arapaima of 400lb. Mark trying to out do Wil said after losing a Mekong that the next one he caught he would destroy and have it hooked landed, pictured and released with in 20 minutes. Well anybody that’s hooked these powerful fish before already knows the outcome of this statement. Marks next Mekong made him eat those words and suffer for even thinking them but in his defense he did have the 20 minutes right but just a shame it was an hour and twenty minutes before it entered the net. During their stay they found that Gillhams was the place for them with good fishing during the days and plenty of mayhem in the evenings. By the end of their stay Mark caught 34 fish of nine species including his 150lb Mekong, arapaima to 320lb and Siamese carp to 90lb. Willie also done well with 34 fish of seven species including Siamese carp to 80lb, redtail catfish to 75lb Julian’s golden carp to 40lb and even landed a very rare black shark carp.

Our next angler Adam Beale really had luck on his side when coming to Gillhams, he came for a one night stay with his non fishing girlfriend with just 1 ½ days fishing. Within ten minutes of his first cast Adam caught his main target with a 65lb Siamese carp and if that wasn’t luck he then went onto catching two arapaima of 250lb and 400lb followed by an Amazon redtail catfish of 75lb. With his luck the way it was he thought he would push it even more, by asking his girlfriend if they could stay for one more night and day and even pulled that one off! But he did have to promise that on his return from Thailand he wouldn’t go straight to his local syndicate water, we haven’t heard if he kept this promise but we are laying odds that he didn’t keep his promise! Adam finished up with 15 fish of four species. Now with a lady like that and Adam’s way with words we are sure that when they get married in the near future, she will agree to coming to Gillhams for their honeymoon.

This month we also got to meet South African Kobus Hermitage and his son Brandon, they came for a two week fishing trip after Kobus got in contact with us after seeing Zeb Hogan fishing here with National Geographic. After watching Zeb with our monster fish they decided this would be their next fishing adventure, and would also make a good article in South Africa’s biggest selling fishing magazine Stywelyne Tightline. Kobus has been writing a monthly Colum for 15 years for this magazine, Kobus has fished since he could walk and has seven caps for the South African fishing team of which he also coaches. (He never got a Gillhams cap though as Becky wouldn’t give him one for free, next time Kobus I will make sure you get one!) Son Brandon 14 years old also started fishing as soon as he was big enough to hold a rod, and now fish’s for his province. Before coming to Gillhams Brandon held a personal best catch of 10kg but managed to up that slightly when landing an arapaima of 130kg. Both father and son enjoyed some of the best fishing they will possibly experience by catching 81 fish and 18 different species four of these from our lure lake. They also caught seven fish over 100lb of four different species with the biggest fish going to Kobus with a 320lb arapaima. Dad and I missed their visit as we where in Panama, hopefully Kobus and Brandon will take up our offer of a return visit in the near future when we will present them with their hats and tee shirts!

Only just making the newsletter this month due to us only receiving the pictures the day before the newsletter went online, we seem to be getting popular with our fellow anglers from South Africa. Jon Groom and his two sons Guy and Darren paid us a visit, yet another group of nice guys from this fishing mad country. This being their first time to Gillham’s they were very pleased with the fish and our set up here, they are already planning a return trip. We have a list on our client base named PKH which we promise they were not on, it’s a private joke but if you visit us and buy a beer we can disclose the files meaning! Between them they caught 24 fish of seven species with the biggest catch going to Darren when he landed an arapaima of 400lb.
That just about rounds of another months fishing in Krabi here at to book your dream holiday and catch monster fish contact us by emailing or phone Stuart on +66 (0) 861644554. Please remember to book early to avoid the disappointment when told we are full.
Best wishes from all the team here at Gillhams and we hope to see you all in the near future.