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Catches, entertainment and news from Thailand’s only exclusive syndicated sport-fishing venue
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Welcome once again to the Jurassic Mountain newsletter that gives you all the news, gossip, catch reports and light hearted anglers antics that relates to our exclusive Thailand fishing paradise for the month of June. A big thanks to all the new faces and returning guests who succumbed to the gravitational pull of our ‘Extreme fishing gem.’ It was our pleasure indeed to welcome you all to Jurassic Mountain Resort and Fishing Park.
AMAZING THAILAND CONTINUES IT’S RISE UP THE POPULARITY CHARTS ……
Figures produced by the Ministry of tourism and sports this month show that no fewer than 12 million foreign tourists visited The Land of Smiles in the first four months of this year generating an astonishing 800 billion Thai baht in revenue. This represents a 2.9% rise in visitor numbers and a 4.7% rise in revenue from the same period in 2016. Things are definitely looking up for this fabulous country.
RIGHT, let’s now concentrate on Jurassic Mountain and continue this newsletter with this month’s ‘WHY DO WE’ question which is…..
WHY DO WE HAVE A DRAW SYSTEM FOR THE ALLOCATING OF THE SWIMS ON OUR LAKE?…..
Where do I start with this? I suppose it’s best that I start at the very beginning when plans for the design of the lake were on the drawing board. We were unanimous in the opinion that the lake should NOT house any fish holding areas such as gravel bars, deep holes, rocky outcrops, ledges, shelves, mounds or any protruding features because in a lake full of big fish, these types of topography may very well attract the fish but invariably end up becoming snags too so who wouldn’t, given the opportunity, create a fishery WITHOUT these problems when the welfare of big and rare fish is of paramount importance?
Therefore, with the well being of our fish seen as top priority, our lake has been designed on the basis that each and every swim is as near as uniform to each other as possible which also eradicates the favoured swim scenario that is seen on so many other venues. After all, there’s not much point in being proficient in watercraft and knowing where the features in a lake are if the feature in question is in front of a swim that you may have initially had the pleasure of fishing from but since that moment on is booked out for customers who are now deemed to be more important than you. Not much point at all!
On the other hand, having favoured swims in the lake may well of course be an advantage to the fishery owners who look to impress a favoured angler of their choice or by ‘cosying’ up to the elite but this is of no benefit whatsoever to the other paying customers, the colour of whose money is just the same as everybody else’s and who therefore deserve just as equal a chance as the next guy. You’ll find that we treat all of our customers the same here with no ‘mates rates’ on offer, no swims set aside for friends and favours and with NO exceptions for anybody. We’ve had numerous big ‘names’ through our door and we’re proud of the fact that none of them have ever been given preferential treatment over other guests. The majority of the ‘elite’ accept our system without question but it’s also just possible why the odd one or two of them have never come back! So basically, if it’s preferential treatment you’re looking for, I’m afraid you’ll need to look elsewhere because it isn’t available at Jurassic Mountain. We simply leave it to the angler to show us what they can do for us on the lake and NOT what we can do for them and the reason we are able to treat all of our customers fairly in this way is solely down to the lakes design in the first place.
‘SO HOW DO WE ALLOCATE THE SWIMS HERE AT JURASSIC MOUNTAIN?’
Firstly, if any angler wishes to know which swims have been producing the best results in the last few days or so, this knowledge is of course readily available. Just ask and all will be revealed to you but be warned, this does not guarantee that you will be getting amongst them too. Just because thirty fish came out yesterday from a particular swim does not automatically guarantee that today will be the same or indeed anywhere near it. Visa versa, this is exactly the same as the swim that struggled for bites yesterday but then proceeds to produce double figures of fish the next.
‘SO IF THERE IS NO APPARENT ADVANTAGE FROM ONE SWIM TO THE NEXT, WHY HAVE A DRAW SYSTEM?’
As far as we can see, there are only three ways of allocating the swims on an in demand fishery that the majority of you have just flown 6000 miles to get to.
The first way is to leave it to the management, but because it’s only natural that anglers will favour a particular swim that has produced for them in the past or favour a swim that has recently fished well, leaving it to the management leaves it open to the “old boys network” and preferential treatment being handed out. As already explained, that does not happen here.
The second way is to leave it to the paying guest but this ultimately ends up in disputes as anglers fight over their favourite swims. That does not happen here either.
Or the third way is to start on a level playing field which is where our draw system comes into effect. The decision to adopt this ‘fair to everybody’ system was taken with the input of Martin Bowler and Martin is one of the most respected, straightforward and honest specimen hunters out there. If it’s good enough for Martin, you know it will certainly be good enough for you too.
SO HOW DOES THE DRAW SYSTEM WORK?
As you’re most probably aware, we impose a ten swim limit out of the seventeen available to alleviate the prospect of the lake being overfished and which in turn gives each angler more of a fighting chance to enjoy a productive day here. Filling every swim to it’s capacity every day would obviously maximise the amount of revenue coming through our door but we’re in this business for the long haul and we much prefer to have anglers who’ve had a productive day going out of our door instead of just pound notes coming through it. Our ten swim limit goes a long way in ensuring just that!
We then place ten balls numbered one to ten in a bag and whoever draws number one gets first choice of the swims and so on up to number ten who, even though he’s drawn the ten ball, he will still have eight remaining swims to choose from. Then, from that moment on, it’s up to the angler to display their angling skills such as baiting, casting and rig knowledge all in conjunction with an understanding of fish behaviour that will ultimately be deemed to produce the lions share of results.
So there you have it. I hope that what I have written will have given you a greater insight into the integrity of the draw system here that ensures fairness to all and hopefully you’ll choose Jurassic Mountain as the venue to fish when you’re next in Thailand. If you do, I can categorically tell you this …. Not only will you be fishing on a lake that is challenging and totally unpredictable, you’ll also be rewarded beyond your wildest dreams should you manage to get it right on the day. Jurassic Mountain awaits you, why not come and show us what you can do!
THE JURASSIC UPGRADES CONTINUE …….
Further improvements this month included the upgrading of the internet connection that is now accessible from every corner of the resort and all around the lake. Obviously this is very handy because now you can Skype your friends live to show off that massive fish you’ve just landed. That’ll make ‘em jealous! The television system has also been upgraded in the bar, restaurant and very soon in every guest room where you can enjoy news and movie channels but best of all for you footie fans, you’ll be able to choose whatever premiership match you wish and watch your favourite team live when your days fishing is over. Another nice little touch for you anglers is whether you’re shedding tears of joy after landing the fish of your dreams or the inevitable tears of sadness when the time has come to leave Jurassic, freshly laundered embroidered hand towels to wipe away those tears are now available for your use in every sala……!
RIGHT, let’s now take a light hearted look at some of the antics of a selection of anglers who graced Jurassic Mountain for the month of July. My apologies are extended to those who visited us and who didn’t get a mention, it’s nothing personal, there’s just far too many of you for me to keep up with. Here goes…
JOHN Watts could only find the time to fit in a single day’s fishing at Jurassic which sometimes doesn’t really give enough time to land the big one if your particular day in question is one where the action is a bit on the slow side. No such problem for John though. With a determination to get amongst the predators from swim 16, John presented his dead baits to not only land that fine alligator gar but also managed to land his trophy fish being his very first arapaima too. Obviously this was not a bad result for a one day session so John decided to push his luck further and booked one more day before leaving the Land of Smiles. What a day this turned out to be! Two Amazon redtails and a nice Indian carp were a fair result in itself but the icing on the cake was when he landed a further two arapaima to make it a hat trick of arri’s in his two day session.
STEVE Lambert stayed at Jurassic Mountain for best part of a year and as a present to his mum Susan who was holidaying in Thailand with new husband to be Martin, he arranged for them to have a day’s fishing here. Now if my memory serves me right, it took Steve the best part of forever to get his first arapaima so it was sods law that Martin got one on his very first time on the lake to show Steve exactly how it’s done and which will no doubt give him the bragging rights for many years to come. That’s fishing for you!
WELCOME back to a very competent and accomplished angler from the UK, Nick Parker. Nick fished here last year with great results and it didn’t take him long to get the carp to go on the feed again and to carry on where he left off last time. Nick also celebrated his birthday whilst here and gave himself a nice present when he landed 39 fish during his 5 day stay with carp up to 65 lbs, redtails to 50 and an amazing three arapaima on his very last day. Although this is not the record for the most arapaima caught in a single day session here at Jurassic, Nick’s name has now been added to the elite group of anglers who have managed to land three in a single day in the past. Many happy returns Nick.
THIS is Lyndon who despite landing four nice carp and three chunky Amazon redtails, also had the misfortune of playing a couple of monster fish for a total of SEVEN hours and losing the pair of them to hook pulls. One of these escapees was a huge arapaima but the other one didn’t even break the surface so it’s anybody’s guess as to what species it was. Nevertheless, although Lyndon experienced the highs and lows that angling throws at you, he thoroughly enjoyed his time here despite the fact he was left wondering just what the hell it was that had led him such merry dance around the lake before it spat the hook. Couldn’t be the grim reaper …. Could it?
STUART from Whitstable in Kent flew the twelve thousand mile round trip for just seven days at Jurassic with his young son, eleven year old Freddy and Stuart’s pal Joe. I suppose you could say that it’s a long way to come for just a short period of time but by the time it was all over, Stuart said it was worth every minute of the flight to get here. Their very first day saw bags of action with Stuart’s best carp around the 75 lb mark but the highlight was seeing young Fred hook, play and land a fabulous alligator gar all of 60 lbs earning him the well deserved nickname of ‘Super Fred’.
Day two saw Stuart bank a Siamese carp of some 70 lbs followed by an arapaima at 140 and Super Fred lived up to his name by landing redtail catfish and a carp around the 80 lb mark which almost pulled the poor little sod headfirst into the lake.When it was finally all over and with seven days of fishing behind them, Stuart and young Fred had landed a more than satisfactory number of different species of fish between them confirming that their short stay in Thailand was indeed worth every second of that twelve thousand mile round trip! You’ll see young Super Fred in our main newsletter cover photo after landing his carp around the 80 lb mark and in light of his angling exploits here where he displayed great technique and a passion for the sport rarely seen at such a young age, it gives me great pleasure in bestowing upon him our July angler of the month award and fully deserved it is too. Well done indeed young fella!
STUART’S hod carrier pal Joe also from Whitstable in Kent was over the moon to arrive for his first ever fishing trip abroad and to say he was excited to be here was an understatement. He was that keen to get those rods out he couldn’t sleep and he sat out on his verandah from 2 am counting down the hours to get going. At long last 7am arrived and within minutes of his first cast from the swim known as ‘The point’, Joe had his very first Siamese carp weighing around 45 lb’s safely in the net. A cracking start to his Jurassic Mountain experience and one that carried on in the same vein because by the time it was all over after seven days of fishing, Joe had landed decent numbers of quality fish every day except for the one that he really craved being the arapaima. Incredibly, Joe had hooked into and played SIX arapaima during his visit before losing each and every one of them which prompted his mate Stuart to award him with the dubious title of Tom, Dick……. and definitely no arri. Nevertheless, Joe was totally blown away with his very first Thailand fishing experience and before leaving to get back to his hod carrying in the UK said, ‘A bad day fishing beats a good day at work anytime.’ Needless to say, the bad day’s fishing here at Jurassic Mountain was totally non existent!
TESCO executive and extremely keen angler is Paul Beresford-Clarke who had a major battle here with this heavyweight monster Siamese that came to the net after a fight that took him well into the darkness. Tesco’s slogan of ‘Every Little Helps’ certainly applies but this beautiful carp did far more than just a little when helping to make Paul’s ‘umpteenth visit here one that he’ll never forget!
WE were just over a week into July and quality carp were being landed from almost every swim but the bigger boys in the 100 lb’s plus bracket were laying low. That is until Doug the health and safety officer got into one as seen in the above photo. Now, having spent the best part of my life in the construction industry in the UK, I think it’s fair to say that the dreaded health and safety officer was not the highest person on my christmas card list, in fact, due to the numerous run ins I’d had with them over the years, I hated ‘em! I came to the conclusion that the only reason they were suited to the job was because they didn’t have the charisma to be a bloody undertaker! Enter Doug from Peterborough, the first health and safety officer that I’ve ever come across who I actually liked and it just goes to show that some of them are human after all. In fact, I quite enjoyed having a bit of banter with him when I informed him that, under Jurassic’s health and safety rules, he was wearing incorrect footwear and if I see him like it again, he’s gonna be chucked off site! I’ve waited years to say that to one of those sods! Doug, who was no doubt itching to get back to work in the UK to continue terrorising all in his path actually loved every minute of his five day stay here and was well pleased with the catch results from his Jurassic experience because he landed an abundance of Siamese carp, Indian carp, Amazon redtails and a tambaqui too. It was during his last day of five that this triple figure carp also came to the net and literally sent Doug ‘over the moon’…….. and with not a safety harness or a bloody hard hat in sight!
RONNY from Bruges literally spends his whole life fishing. Sometimes you’ll find him on the riverbank but mainly he’s to be found in a Belgian trawler plundering the British waters off of Milford Haven and Liverpool which is in my opinion EU backed legalised poaching. Once he’s got his boat filled to the gunnels, he then spends his Thailand holiday plundering the waters of Jurassic Mountain ………. except that at this location there was no quota limits and he was pulling out fish completely with our blessing!
GINGER’ from Leeds (centre) I think would be the first to agree that he’s not the most powerful bloke in the world and so it was sods law that he’d hook into something that would test him to his very limits….. and he did! Ginger found himself in a titanic tussle with a carp that when previously caught was weighed and verified at 112 lb’s but now looking considerably heavier and definitely more powerful, this carp literally refused point blank to come anywhere near the net and it fought like a maniacal Mekong on steroids before eventually being subdued. This was without doubt the fight of Ginger’s life and one which he won’t forget in a hurry because this fish nearly put him in the hospital! Nevertheless, Ginger, although battered and bruised, thoroughly enjoyed every arm wrenching second of it! Get well soon mate!
CHRIS Woodrow from Essex is an extremely accomplished carp angler and is definitely up there with the top names in the sport. Chris has fished for carp all over the world and apart from writing in most of the top angling editorials, he has also written a book about his lifetimes fishing exploits too. He’s titled this book ‘One Step Beyond’ and it’s well worth getting your nose into it because it’s a cracking read. More info on how to purchase this book can be found simply by clicking on the image of the books cover below.
Chris arrived with his friend and fellow carp angler Keith Rawlingson and their first day on the lake was pretty eventful because they landed eighteen carp between them with Keith’s best at 65lb and the largest falling to Chris at just over the 90lb. Not a bad start by any stretch of the imagination!
Now whether it was the exertions of pulling in all those carp on day one or the effects of jet lag combined with the copious amounts of wine consumed the previous evening, neither Chris nor Keith showed their faces until well after midday. However, this late start still did not stop them from landing nine carp up to 70 odd pounds between them and just for good measure, Chris also made acquaintance with a nice arapaima that picked up his bait on his very first cast.
Oops! Another midday start for these two but this one had me to blame this time because the previous evening I’d suggested a ‘quick beer’ down in Cha-am. Now, for the people that actually know me, they’ll tell you that a ‘quick’ beer with yours truly does not exist and by the time I got these two back to the resort and subsequently finished the night off back at my place for a game of pool and a couple of bottles of rum, it was best part of 3am before they fell into bed. Nevertheless, even with an afternoon start, Chris and Keith still managed to land seven carp between them in the 45-65 lb bracket.
It was rods away for day four at Jurassic and I joined the lads for a round of golf at the famous Banyan golf course down in Hua hin. What a golf course this is and it’s just one of the many tip top courses that are in easy reach of Jurassic Mountain. We had a great day at Banyan but I’m not sure how the lads from Essex manage to calculate their golf handicaps…. Maybe they just think of a number and treble it! Needless to say, I got stuffed!
Their fifth and final day saw them start fishing at 7am sharp because they were leaving in mid afternoon to get to Bangkok in plenty of time to enjoy a night out in this fantastic, crazy city. However, cutting their day short in favour of the nightlife of Bangkok didn’t deter them from bringing yet another half a dozen quality carp to the net including the one that Chris had targeted from day one, a triple figure Siamese of around 105lb. This cracking fish that Chris had set out to land from the start was the icing on the cake for one of the sports top anglers and it made for the perfect ending to their Jurassic Mountain experience which I’ve been assured will definitely not be their last. So, yet another satisfied customer, another big feather in the cap for Jurassic and for me personally, a pleasure indeed in meeting these two guys and I will definitely look forward to hooking up with them again in the future.
ONE of my favourite fish is the tambaqui and it’s not only a visually striking fish but it also gives a great scrap to those who hook into them. We have over two hundred of this species cruising around the lake yet had not seen one come to the net in over two months until Stuart Rule landed one earlier this month which unfortunately did a Houdini act and got away from the net before the camera came out. One tambaqui out of over two hundred in over two months is a poor return and leaves you wondering just what it is that will eventually entice them to go on the feed. Well, whatever it is, it happened this month because just like buses, you wait ages for one and then four of ‘em come along at once as the following photos show….
EDDIE Singleton swaps the gloomy, rain soaked streets of Manchester for the exotic and comparatively warmer climes of Jurassic Mountain once every four months but it seems Eddie has a far more important reason other than the fishing that tempts him to dump the brolly in Manchester three times a year….. his lovely girlfriend Nan.
Eddie and Nan have been an item for over four years now and very soon those gloomy, rain soaked streets will become nothing but a distant memory for Eddie because he’s got his feelers out to buy a piece of land here and build the home that together with Nan, will eventually become where he will spend his well earned retirement and the rest of his life doing what he loves the best …and that’s fishing! Eddie, do it sooner rather than later mate, I can thoroughly recommend it!
Eddie fished the swim known as ‘The Bruce’ named in memory of Jurassic’s and Eddie’s late great pal, Bruce Lee Lancaster. It was not one of Jurassic’s most productive days on record but dear old Bruce must have definitely took time out from drinking up there in the ‘Angel Inn’ to smile down upon his old mate because after previously landing a couple of Amazon redtail’s and a decent Indian carp from this swim, Eddie hooked into this cracking tambaqui that had also decided to show it’s face this month…….
A big thanks to all those who’ve sent in their photos for entry into our best photo of the year competition. Below are three more selected from those sent in so far. Please keep sending your best photos but no more than three please to firstname.lastname@example.org and not only will you get your best shots posted on our Jurassic facebook page, it might just be yours that wins the fabulous prize of an all inclusive, all expenses paid holiday in our little piece of paradise over here in Thailand.
MONKEY BUSINESS IN THAILAND ……
I’d like to tell you about a bit of monkey business in a national park about an hour from Jurassic called Kaeng Krachan which is absolutely stunning and is well worth a visit when you’re in Thailand. This national park has a seemingly never ending number of huge mountains surrounding a massive lake which you are able to enjoy your own personal boat trip around. However, I’d been informed that the highlight of your boat trip is that when a particular island full of monkeys see you coming, hordes of them jump into the water and swim out to your boat to get at the bags of bananas that you take on board. That’s not all! Evidently, not content with hanging about in the water while you lob the bananas at them, they clamber on board and help themselves too!
So, armed with this knowledge, I took Neti there and told her that we were going to have a nice little boat trip to feed the monkeys but conveniently omitted to tell her about the jumping on board bit. So there was Neti strategically placed on the front of our little boat clutching two bags of Fyffes finest excitedly looking forward to feeding the monkeys but blissfully unaware of the impending ape invasion that was to follow. With my camera at the ready, I perched myself at the back of the boat and waited for the action.
We eventually stopped about fifty metres from an island to see what I can only describe as a scene out of the planet of the apes. There were hundreds of ‘em all lined up along the shore waiting for the next boatload of bananas….. and we were it.
Without warning, each and every one of them plunged into the lake and started to swim towards us for their banana buffet. Big males and females with babies hanging around their necks, it didn’t matter. They were all in the lake and swimming towards us for all they were worth. Neti was thrilled. She was lobbing in the bananas as happy as Larry but as they got closer, she couldn’t throw them in fast enough and now there were more monkeys than bananas. Then it happened! Exactly where Neti was sat, half a dozen of them boarded the boat like demented Somalian boat pirates intent on hijacking the grub…… and Neti all but shit herself! With a scream that could be heard in Bangkok, she dumped the bananas and made a lunge for the safety of the back of the boat where I was sitting filming in absolute hysterics. To say she was not amused is an understatement. She weren’t happy at all about being molested by a bunch of apes but the deaf and dumb dinner we had between us that evening was well worth it because the video I took of the whole event was absolutely priceless. A You- tube hit for sure!
After Neti’s tiny Thai tantrum had subsided, she eventually saw the funny side of it but I’ve had to promise her that any future monkey business will be strictly between us only ….. and with no monkeys invited!
Well that’s almost it for yet another month here at The Mountain except to say that my enjoyment in living in this beautiful place steadily increases as each month goes by.
Having lived the hectic life of running my own business in the UK and enduring all the stress that goes with it, it’s really nice to know that the only thing I now have to worry about when I wake up in the morning is whether to go fishing or take Neti to the beach! In fact, the only other major problem I seem to have these days is in deciding whether to walk my little Alfie around the lake anti clockwise or clockwise! Stressful or what?
Yes, I can honestly say that living in Jurassic Mountain has been one of the better decisions I’ve ever made in my life and it brings to mind that well known saying that you should ‘live your life as though heaven is on earth.’ Well I’m pleased to inform you that heaven IS here on earth….. and I’ve found it!
VERY FINALLY …. A few poignant words personally from Eddy Mounce as a tribute and in remembrance of his good friend ‘Ally’. The Thai fishing scene is a sadder place these days with the passing of this man. Eddy writes as follows:-
“It is likely that many of those who have followed Jurassic’s uprising will also know of Fish Thailand’s ‘Ally’ who began working with me 12 years ago when I founded the guided fishing company. Ally sadly passed away recently which to those who knew him, it will come of no surprise to hear that right up until three weeks before he died, he was guiding our clients to Bungsamran Lake in his usual jovial and fun nature with plenty of singing thrown into the day from both himself and his song bird that always went to work with him. The scene filmed of Ally singing with Robson Green in the Thailand episode of Extreme Fishing illustrates perfectly his personality and how he will remembered. His fun loving character, deep loyalty and strong friendship will be sorely missed. Rest In Peace Ally.”
I’d like to thank you for taking the time to read this newsletter and I sincerely hope that it tempts you to sample the delights that Jurassic Mountain has to offer. Hopefully we’ll have the pleasure of your company in the future where you might just realise your dreams and catch the fish of your lifetime. However, in the event that the fishing gods decree that the monster fish lurking in the murky depths eludes you on the day, at least you’ll return home safe in the knowledge that you’ve just fished at what is widely considered to be Thailand’s number one fishing resort and the closest place resembling paradise that you could ever imagine possible. Paradise? Jurassic Mountain exemplifies the very word so why not come and join me and see for yourself. It’s very easy to get here ….. but a damn sight harder to leave!
TIGHT LINES ALL, SEE YOU ON HERE NEXT MONTH.