Fishing Heaven - Gillhams Fishing Resort In Thailand!
This article from Mike 'Spug' Redfern is crammed full of some quite amazing captures, but not the type of fish you're used to seeing him hold up for the camera? As he and a few of the Mainline boys head off to Gillhams Fishing Resort, Thailand!
Our guide for the week was an Essex lad called Joel, who had turned his back on a life of pressure and stress working in the city, to become a guide for Stuart, it was quickly becoming easy to see why!
Next away was Kev and after a spirited scrap he was soon holding up an awesome 60lb+ Siamese carp, which had fallen to a boilie, Scaff wasn't far behind with a 60+Siamese carp either, which managed to jump from his arms and escape before being filmed. By the end of day one I had landed a 7lb spotted featherback and we had all become blown away by the place including the fish-care, every fish was carefully netted and unhooked, every fish was treated, checked and lovingly returned. No fish are ever dragged out of the lake, they are all held within the nets and if you want a pic with one, then you simply jump in get your pic and the fish is returned.
The fish weren't the only ones being spoilt either, so were we and all the other anglers at the lake, nothing was too much trouble for the guides, who were constantly flying about getting cold drinks, delivering full English breakfasts to your swim, answering any questions you may have, etc etc, in truth we felt like royalty and it made a very refreshing change, the customer care at Gillhams fishing resort is such that they made all the anglers feel that it was a privilege for them to be looking after us and for us to be catching their beloved fish, not the other way round, something that a few commercial fishery owners should really take note of in my opinion.
Over the next couple of days the fish continued and Gary Landed an 88lb Siamese carp and Scaff followed it nicely with a 80lb Siamese, I landed a 37lb Amazon Kev then landed a 180lb Mekong catfish followed by a 40lb plus Amazon! then Scaff and Gary both landed Arapaima over 200lb Scaffs weighing 260 I believe, truly amazing stuff and finally Gary popped a 150lb Mekong catfish in.
Scaff and Gary then both landed Arapaima over 200lb Scaffs weighing 260 I believe, truly amazing stuff and finally Gary popped a 150lb Mekong catfish in.
Our time was running out and we only had one days fishing left to go left to go but I managed a 90lb Siamese carp and then another arapaima at about 160lb and Scaff managed to catch another Arapaima around 160lb but this time on a fly rod! The battle that ensued was epic and a fine piece of angling by him.
This added up to about 6 days fishing three full days then 4 afternoons really and in fairness much after day 4 we didn't even start fishing until around 12pm, as once the Arapaima had been landed there was kind of a "Job done" feeling about the trip. With one full day left we went out for a meal that evening with Jerry Hammond and his group of guys who were also out there when we were and enjoyed a few of the sites in Ao Nang. On our last day we went down to the beach at Ao Nang, went on a longboat to a secluded beach and drank cocktails and had massages on the beach and prepared for the journey home.
Now from a personal view we made some mistakes, Thailand is an amazing country and we didn't get to do half the things I wanted too and for most of the trip I was running on about two thirds power, we crammed so much into the 7 days we were out there but in truth you need nearer to 14 days, I would recommend that you fish for a couple of days then have a day off, go and see the sights and absorb what this amazing place has to offer, then a couple of days fishing then a day of etc etc, so with that in mind I need to go back again as there are a load of things I didn't do, I think we were just too keen to catch fish and as you can see by the pics we caught some incredible fish and all of us cannot recommend the place enough, the fishing is not technically difficult (And on this point I would advise anyone going out there, to listen to the guides and follow their advice as it will make your fishing a lot easier) the customer service is second to none, the fish are stunning and the views breathtaking.
Thanks to Stuart, Sean and Bex Gillham for the amazing service and opportunity and of course all the guides especially our personal one Joel truly amazing, we'll see you again!