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Krabi newsletter November 2009

Hi to all our readers Christmas is nearly here and as Decembers news letter won’t be out till after Christmas I would like to take this opportunity to wish all of you a happy Christmas and hope that you make lots of money so you can come and visit us here at Gillhams! Do you know when we where kids we where so poor that if you didn’t wake up on Christmas morning with an erection you had nothing to play with!

As mentioned last month we had the pleasure of the 2006 Commonwealth games decathlon champion Dean Macey here for a weeks fishing and bell ringing! Because the Angling times and Tight lines where reporting Dean’s catch we agreed to hold the report over until this month. This is what Dean had to say about us. Heaven is a fishery and its called Gillhams Fishing Resort! I have been lucky to travel the world over the last decade and even luckier to wet a line in some amazing places but none of them can hold a candle to Gillhams Fishing Resort. The facilities are out of this world and the fishing blew my mind every single day. Where else on the planet can you catch 39 fish, with 9 different species and every one of them a PB, in just a week. I would quite happily fish no other destination for the rest of my life. I’ll be back next year, and probably the year after that to. Awesome!

Dean fished well checked his depths baited tight areas listened to local knowledge and fished his socks off. In that 39 fish catch where seven arapaima to 280lb, 18 Siamese carp to 50lb, two Amazon red tail catfish to 50lb, a Mekong catfish of 120lb, tiger catfish, rohu carp, black pacu and a record shaking 11lb 4oz spotted feather back 12 oz below the current world record.

Vince who accompanied Deane is also one hell of a good angler, who was on his second visit here. If all our clients where like these two our life would be easy but the fish wouldn’t like getting caught so much! Vince wanted to target Chao Phraya catfish as they eluded him last time and with our de stocking programme felt now was the time to do it. He landed two up to 50lb in his 15 fish haul which also included five arapaima to 160lb, Amazon red tail catfish to 70lb, Asian red tail catfish, sorubim and alligator gar.

The fishing slowed down this month mainly due to the change over from wet to dry season, we had heavy rain then a heat wave followed by more heavy rain the water temperatures where up and down more times than a whores draws! The arapaima have been saving the day as they are continuing there after spawning feast. Both females with babies abandoned their young thanks to the non stop attacks from the Chao Phraya catfish! We are continuing to remove the Chao Phraya as they get caught; we now have 13 to go. Once they are gone we can stock some peacock bass and Thai mahseer who are both aggressive fry feeders but won’t attack the other fish.

Another fish causing problems here are the giant stingray, when we stocked them they where easy to land now they have settled in and doubled in size. Making them impossible to land on the tackle we use, without an oil drum as a float to tire them out. We have now sourced a supply of freshwater rays that grow to a maximum 50lb and have no stings, so I won’t be called barbaric again for harmlessly clipping their stings! We will be stocking a few in the future to add some variety for our anglers. Now that must be a better way to drum up business!!

We are still getting plenty of guys wearing Speedos around the lake, now if you are under 30 without a beer gut and are blessed with a large donger then all well and good. But being the wrong side of 30 in stones and over 40 years in age is damn right obscene! These guys parade around the lake looking like budgie smugglers, come on lads cut it out! Mind you some of the ladies have been wearing small sized bikinis, and popping out at the wrong moments but not any complaints are received about that!
Talking of Speedos and little lumps that stick out new fishing guide Scot has been parading around in his leopard skin Speedos, looking more like a beach bum he has been re named Bruce the Australian surfer. Scot keeps complaining that Gollock our Thai fishing guide never takes any notice of him, when asked do you speak in Thai? Scot replied no but I speak slowly in English! Bless!!

The non bell ringers this month who are happy to take a drink off a fellow angler’s bell ring have been numerous; in fact we have had 10 of them. You know who you are and as most of you are regulars here for financial reasons I have not named you! If you don’t want to join in the fun fine no problem it’s all a joke and to be honest it works out pretty even throughout the week, but don’t take drinks of the guys who do ring the bell. Just explain sorry I am a miserable tight sod and decline the drink!

How about our mate Rob Eustace once again Rob justifies the bungalow handle, despite numerous reminders he still forgot to post our landing nets. Rob phoned Rebecca my daughter and asked; how does your dad get away with slating customers in Gillhams gripes? Becca told him he doesn’t name them that’s how, but I knew it was me said Rob bless him! Terry Robs dad was here this month and was telling us about Rob when he was younger deciding to be a gangster, he cut the barrel off his airgun to produce a sawn off air rifle, now that should spread the shot!
Becca did not understand this one either so maybe her and Useless should get together. Talking of gangsters why do so many daft twats come here boasting about themselves and their mates who are all hard nuts, ex boxers, ex SAS or mates of the Krays! When all they really are is wrinkled up has been’s! Come on guys you ain’t impressing us read your Andy Mcnab books and keep the fantasies in your pea sized brains.

Before I go any further I owe Malaysian anglers an apology, in last months news letter I wrote about a group of Malaysians spoiling the Malaysian 100% record here of being easy going people. In fact that record is still intact as I wrongly presumed the group was all Malaysian when in fact it was only one Malaysian. Who seemed like a good guy, when the group left I invited him back as I felt the organizer of there group had let him down. I have since been sent some very childish emails but as this guys name was not actually added to them and he has not answered my emails I presume he was not part of the crap. So to my many Malaysian friends and clients please accept my apologies for my mistaken identification of your countrymen.

Which leads me nicely onto Gillhams Gripe? Judging by the amount of emails I get about this section it seems a very popular part of the news letter , thanks for your feedback at least I know you read it. I won’t go down the road of checking the swim as it offends the chuck it and chance it brigade, but why the hell don’t some people listen to sod all we tell them! So many are hell-bent on proving us wrong we live here and work here every day we see the fish rolling and jumping, we see where the fish get caught from by the good anglers who do there homework. This month has been slow but the good anglers have still gone home with an impressive catch. The others are whinging that we don’t have enough fish, or the lucky basted in the next swim has caught loads! We tell them to fish to the plateau, so they fish the margin’s! We say sea fish will out fish freshwater fish baits, as our fish are farmed and look upon a sea fish as natural food, so they catch a small freshwater fish twatt it and use it! We tell them to cast where they see arapaima roll as more fish will be below them, arapaima like to swim in groups, they don’t bother as they want to wait for them to come to them! Siamese carp for some reason love 16 feet of water over sand we tell them where these areas are, many are small spots which require accurate casting and baiting, what do they do chuck it and hope! On our web site it tells you what to bring, but they ignore it then moan when the guy who did read it has something they haven’t because it isn’t fair he should share what he took the trouble to bring! Biggest problem this month has been we tell you to bring your own groundbait catapult and spare elastic, as we cant stock them. The elastic degenerates in a week! Some have tuned up without one and get all upset because the other guy has his own, even going as far as not wanting to fish because they haven’t got one. We thought we would enjoy every moment of this job but thanks to the whingers sometimes it gets spoilt, every time it is going well some twat spoils it. Then we get the ones who come here once, think they are our best friends and want free holidays or massive discounts. Everyone told me when you have your own fishery certain clients will drive you nuts, oh was that a fact. But luckily still the good ones by far outweigh the bad ones. Remember when I tell you we are full on the seven alternate dates you give me you are in the minority of dick heads we don’t want back!

My final gripe (honest!) our web site is packed with information, it tells you all about what fish we have and how to catch them in the fish library, most questions are answered in ask Stuart, the bungalows are explained even with a diagram in resort and contract and prices so why do people still ask questions that have the answers on the web site?

OK so on to the fishing in Krabi: 31 anglers came for fishing holidays in Thailand, ranging from three to ten days, with 16 anglers fishing on day tickets between their Krabi holiday. Between them all they caught 460 fish of 23 species, made up as follows: 68 arapaima to 400lb, six alligator gar to 20lb, one arawana of 7lb, 61 Amazon red tail catfish to 80lb, 15 Asian red tail catfish to 30lb, 21 black pacu to 40lb, six Chao Phraya catfish to 80lb, three giant Gourami to 10lb, two giant featherback of 11lb, seven Julian’s golden prize carp to 25lb, five Mekong catfish to 150lb, one mad carp of 5lb, two mrigal carp to 10lb, seven rohu to 15lb, nine tambaqui to 40lb, five spotted featherback to 10lb, 185 Siamese carp to 80lb, two striped catfish to 10lb, five striped snakehead to 3lb, 33 shovel nosed spotted sorubim to 45lb, nine shovel nosed tiger catfish to 25lb, three wallago attu to 20lb and six wallago leeri to 25lb.

First guest to arrive this month was Joe Price and his lovely wife Venetta now I always thought that was an Italian ice cream! Her name sounded more like Viagra so that was her name for the holiday! Its people like these that make our job worthwhile, nice easy going people who come for fun with the fishing as a bonus. We had a great time with them even taking a break from the fishing to go to Phuket and see the lady boys! Viagra thought these freaks where the highlight of her trip, poor old Joe never thought he would find a geezer that turned him on! Viagra wasn’t an angler so they where going to split their two week holiday into sight seeing and fishing. Joe though got into his fishing so much that the trip ended up fishing with the odd hour snatched for day trips! Viagra didn’t mind as like so many of our guests wife’s she just loved the tranquility of Gillhams. Joe was a good fisherman who heeded our advice, stuck to the task and ended up with 38 fish of 11 specie which included 11 arapaima to 350lb, six Amazon redtail catfish to 65lb, ten Siamese carp to 55lb, a Mekong catfish of 160lb which was played throughout a huge tropical storm, Chao Phraya of 70lb plus Sorubim, alligator gar, pacu, Asian red tail catfish, spotted feather back and a wallago leeri. Joe also lost a giant stingray after a lengthy battle.

Arriving on the same flight was Dave Coleman and his wife, Dave has his own views on life and can rub people up the wrong way, but he certainly knew how to rub the fish up the right way! Dave is an exceptionally good thinking angler and once you get to know him not a bad fella! Not only can he fish but he likes a drink and is actually a good laugh to take out on the town, Dave really got into the swing of Ao-Nang and had to be dragged home protesting! Their you go Dave you thought I would have a pop at you!! He landed 36 fish of six specie, in his weeks stay including four arapaima to 340lb, two Mekong catfish to 100lb, 23 Siamese carp he found the spot baited up and reaped the rewards with the best being 60lb, plus he landed Amazon red tail catfish, alligator gar and black pacu. Dave was unlucky not to land a giant sting ray he battled one for and hour in a horrendous storm just as he was getting the better of the beast it swished its razor encrusted tail and parted his line. We where all gutted as we where sure if anyone could land one of these giant sink plungers he could.

Regular visitor the ex Yorkshire man from Australia Ian Norris made yet another appearance this month, spending five days with us on his way to a new job and new life in Malaysia. I think he took the job so as he is closer to Gillhams to take full advantage of his Yorkshire discounts! Not that all folk North of Watford are tight but Ian sure did forget to ring the bloody bell after each PB!
He landed 19 fish of five specie including four arapaima to a missing bell ringer of 340lb, he also landed 10 Siamese carp to 70lb, a Tambaqui of bell ringing proportions at 35lb, plus Amazon red tail catfish and sorubim. Now he is only a six hour drive from us I am sure we will see a lot more of him, lets hope the same can be said for his moth ridden wallet!

Then we had the dynamic duo tribal Stu Clinton and his lovely other half Jo Watt. I first heard from Jo in 2008 when she started planning a 40th birthday surprise for Stu, she couldn’t keep the secret long though and they came and booked at the last five lakes show. I think Jo has trouble keeping a lot of things to herself including her boobs! Poor Jo was taking in the rays in her micro bikini when one of her charms fell out, she was merrily chatting away to the fishermen until Sean buggered it up by telling her! To make matters worse he didn’t even take a picture for the news letter! She over did the sun catching a bit when she developed a rash and had to go to the hospital, no drinking and covering up didn’t dampen Jo’s mood at all, and the improvised ankle socks as gloves would have put Michael Jackson’ famous glove to shame! These two also came to Phuket with us for a night out, Stu wanted to wear his pink and yellow shorts with blow up dolls heads on, to impress the heshe’s, but luckily Jo stopped him. He did comment though that the blokes actually had bigger tits than Jo! Stu caught the lake as the fishing was tailing off but the few fish he did land where impressive with only 13 fish of five specie he had a fantastic brace of arapaima with Henry at 350lb plus another arapaima of 340lb and who wouldn’t be happy with that. Obviously Stu has a knack of attracting lovely pairs!

The fishing got very slow as the month wore on with rising and falling temperatures in a dismal five day period Graham Hunt, Wolfgang and Gunter all clients from Siam fishing tours plus big Brian only landed 17 fish between them in five days.

My old mate and Benz step dad Terry the bloodhound impersonator Eustace visited again smack in the middle of the worst fishing period the lake has seen since opening. Mind you it didn’t bother old Terry as he was on his fitness campaign, 70 years old and trying to regain his youth he went mountain biking, and was swimming 150 lengths of the pool before he woke up and ate a gut buster breakfast! In his weeks eating keeping fit and drinking he only landed six fish! Terry bought his old mate John with him who was really nice bloke and good fisherman. John and myself stayed up late most nights talking fishing. When we dragged Terry screaming in protest for a night in Phuket, John declined as the fishing was slow and he did not wish to miss his chance for a big fish. And was he rewarded!! We got a call just before 8pm that John’s dedication had paid of when our stunning female arapaima salmon spot decided to feed after a 12 week maternity leave. Spawned out but still with a weight close to 400lb it makes you wonder how big this old girl will go, John finished with just six fish for the week including two other arapaima.

Pete the pipe from Birmingham also arrived in this lean period with his non fishing better half the long suffering Pam! Pete has fished with us before so new the fishing was not up to its normal self. Despite the conditions and lack of catapult, Pete still managed to land 33 fish of seven specie during his ten night stay. including some bell ringers that slipped his mind in the shape of two Julian’s golden prize carp to 20lb, five arapaima to 200lb, six Amazon red tail catfish to 65lb, and a stunning tambaqui of 38lb, added with sorubim, rohu and 15 Siamese carp he did not have too bad a trip.

Then we had the return of the fishing mad Clark Family, Lin, Lloyd and son Luke. Lloyd is no stranger to big Thai fish having landed a stunning brace of 100lb + carp in the past at another Thai venue. The whole family has had some good fish from here in the past, and made the most of tough conditions this time by going on more day trips as Lloyds mum and her partner accompanied them for what was more of a family holiday with fishing fitted in around things. Luke landed his first arapaima at 120lb putting him in a rare group of anglers under 16 to catch an arapaima, he is already giving his dad a run for his money! Oh talking of money poor Luke can’t be allowed pocket money as he failed to ring the bell! Not sure who caught what but between them they landed 29 fish of seven specie with Lloyd adding a 300lb + arapaima to his growing list of huge fish, that’s three Thai specie over the magic ton. Put that with two Chao Phraya catfish, which where Lloyds target fish he is another who is not allowed pocket money or could not find the bell! Poor mum Lin faired the least although she fished hard; with the tough conditions she struggled to catch which on last years show was a surprise. After leaving us they went to Bangkok to fish with our dear Amigo Sir Jean-Francois Helias team of professional guides, as is normal with the most professional guiding team in Thailand they had some stunning fish young Luke stealing the show with Mekong catfish to 98lb and Siamese carp to 70lb. Dad Lloyd once again got amongst the carp but poor Lin’s run of bad luck continued. Oh well next year will be Lin’s turn for sure.

We also had the return of Ehams tackle big boss Manfred with his non fishing partner Lilo. Fishing was slow plus poor Manfred was suffering the dreaded hook pull syndrome on the arapaima, doing nothing wrong it was just the way the arapaima where feeding. He also lost a sting ray when he was close to succeeding; he suffered the tail whiplash cutting his line. It was a frustrating week for poor Manfred with hook pulls etc , I know he takes his fishing seriously and probably let the situation get to him but he did finish the week with 14 fish of eight specie although no monsters. We all hate it when the lake switches off but unfortunately its out of our control, we all just hope wherever Manfred’s next trip takes him it all comes good for him. One good thing for him at least he genuinely did not have to ring the bell!

Tim and Bob from Singapore returned for a three day fishing trip, this time without there better half’s to give them maximum time to try and achieve there target arapaima. Things where looking grim when after two days the arapaima where playing hide and seek. With the other fish also playing hard to get they only had five fish between them in the first two days, then on day three Bob got on the score sheet with his first arapaima at 150lb, Tim not to be outdone upstaged Bob with a 350lb arapaima, Bob was having none of that and landed another of 110lb. Mission accomplished Tim and Bob went home happy fishermen! At the same time as Tim and Bobs visit we had another Singapore visitor Gavin who only cam for a one night stay with a days fishing to see what Gillhams was like, although he was only on a short visit he was hoping to catch an arapaima. During the day he managed a tambaqui of 28lb then last knockings the dream became reality in the shape of a 130lb arapaima. Now he has had a taste of what we have here the return is being planned. We are slowly building up a Singapore client base like there neighbors in Malaysia the Singaporeans are easy going people who listen and take advice they are also getting used to my warped sense of humor, add that to them being good fishermen they probably wont make Gillhams gripe but then as you all know it only takes one!

Our day ticket anglers found it hard going here this month, slow fishing and only a day to score makes hard work for everyone. We want everyone to have a good day if you are here for five or more days you should have at least one red letter day. But with only a day its down to the lap of Buddha! If we see someone fish hard and fail we always offer another day at cost! This was the case with Lars from Sweden first day zero, the second day the same, at 7pm finishing time we told him to fish on till 8pm then at 7-55pm the shout went around the lake Yeeeeeeeees Lars perseverance had paid of big time with a 340lb arapaima oh yes there is a Buddha up their! We also had the shortest trip ever when two French guys arrived claiming freshwater fishing wasn’t really there thing as they where big marlin hunters! When they failed to catch an arapaima each over 350lb in the first hour they decided to call an end to their four day trip and promptly checked out. Wow the marlin fishing where they go must be hot. They where polite enough though and explained that the freshwater scene is not their thing so fair play to them at least I should not get little girls emails and threats from them like the last disappointed arapaima hunters!

We also had our competition winner from the last Carpin on show at Five lakes in Essex. Deane Oakley with his non fishing partner Nicola won the weeks holiday for two including flights. It was nice to see the prize won by a genuinely nice couple, we where dreading the winner from hell! Poor old Deane picked his week in this slow period but fished his socks off to land 16 Siamese carp to 60lb, two arapaima to 110lb along with two Amazon red tail catfish to 55lb a black pacu, Asian red tail catfish and a striped snakehead. Deane was a good fisherman who had read and studied our web site, if the lake had been on form I reckon he would have emptied the place! In the end Deane and Nicola found a week is too short in paradise and are already saving their pennies for a return visit. Who knows maybe they will win the holiday prize we are planning for the Carpin on show in 2010!

Next visitors where the fishing mad Carter family who live in Thailand at Hua Hin, lovely nice people who where a pleasure to have here. Granddad Billy and his son Ben have been around Thailand a long time looking for the perfect location, in their words they found it here. Having caught many big fish in Thailand before, their boat gets rocked nowadays float fishing match style. Ben’s two sons Andrew 12 and Mathew 9 wanted a pop at our big fish taking turns sharing two rods in a week the boys landed 18 fish of nine specie. Both taking an arapaima each they also landed, Asian and Amazon red tail catfish, Giant Gourami, rohu, sorubim, Siamese carp, Julian’s golden prize carp, and tiger catfish.
Dad Ben and Granddad Billy where merrily bashing out nets full of Java Barb, but when the boys started calling them pest control officers they decided to swap rolls with the boys for two days. Ben had two arapaima to 300lb and two Amazon red tail cats to 60lb, Billy had a 200lb arapaima a 30lb Amazon red tail. Next years school holiday is getting booked as I write this, they are planning a months blitz here. If the boys fish as well as last time whos going to give odds they wont catch all 34 specie in the lake!

Then came our regular adopted mum and dad Arthur and Angie Hawkins, accompanying them this trip was their daughter fishing mad Kim and granddaughter Loran. Arthur and Angie’s last trip was in July this year celebrating Arthurs 70th Birthday. Now that trip they landed 80 fish within Angie beating old fart Arthur 41 to 39. With Gillhams off form this trip Angie once again trounced the old git 27 to 17.Angies catch was made up of seven specie with only one PB in the form of a tiger catfish, when she told Arthur to ring the bell he whisked her of to the bedroom! We where not sure if the deaf old sod thought she wanted her bell ringing or if it was the sight of her in the wet tee shirt that went see through! Arthur caught four specie but had a result on the arapaima with seven to 260lb, which was a bell ringer. Arthur being a tight old sod claimed at the end of the holiday he did not understand the bell ringing as it was not in place on his last visit! What would you expect from and old Essex teddy boy!! Kim landed 16 fish of five specie, including her biggest ever freshwater fish and first arapaima of 150lb followed by another one of 120lb, she also had a PB Siamese carp of 50lb in her eight carp hall. She never shirked her responsibilities and rang the bell at least four times. Proving that living in Australia changed her ways from her Essex upbringing. Laren was too busy swearing undying love on facebook to her new boyfriend she had to leave at home! Between her seven hour chats and 16 hour sleeps she did make a cast or two between eating landing just one Siamese carp of 70lb. Another bell ringer that didn’t materialize! Seriously though Arthur is a very generous kind hearted old sod who we love dearly, luckily though we only have to put up with him twice a year to give the kids a break!

Gillhams most regular client returned again that’s a trip a month since discovering us. John Duffy an expat Brit who lives in Indonesia has caught the Gillham spell. John is the first to admit to being a tad lazy about his fishing, winding Sean up with saying why have a dog and bark yourself. Sean was being bitchy and left John to his own devices more this trip, getting him in practice for the June trip when the lake re opens and we will be rushed of our feet with all those rested fish going on a munch up. In five days John landed 23 fish of nine specie, with some nice new specie John as usual kept ringing that bell, I think sometimes John just rings it as he is a very generous guy. He bought me over some Dutch biscuits stroopwafels made by a Dutch guy in Indonesia, now these are my favorite tucker, that all my Dutch friends bring for me hence my all time top weight! But the Indonesian ones are proper dog poo so please no more from over there! Just a bag of dollars next time please John!
John’s old mucker Barry from KL Malaysia met him once again here for a fishing trip. Poor Barry just caught it wrong here landing just eight fish in five days of six specie, nothing big either but Barry took it for what it is, that’s why they call it fishing not catching!

That’s about me folks don’t forget to get your tickets to come and see us at the Carpin on show five lakes Maldon in Essex on the 6th and 7th March 2010. Who knows maybe you will win a holiday this time all you need to do is purchase a draw ticket on the Saturday or Sunday to be in with a chance. Have a great Christmas and may all your dreams come true for 2010.But those dreams will only come true if you visit us here at
phone +66 (0) 861644554.

Best wishes from Stuart and all the team here at Gillhams fishing resorts Krabi Thailand. The land of smiles especially behind one of our monsters!