Chuan Nails It!

Chuan Nails It!

Paul Arden | Monday, 16 April 2018

Just off the back of four days fishing with Chuan. Six gourami landed and a snakehead off babies! Could have had more gourami too - a few missed strikes here and there and a couple of losses - the usual fishing story (but gourami make any story exceptional). This was Chuan’s fifth trip fishing with me. First time no fish (and no fish saw the fly) - as expected. Second time two hook ups, one broken rod and no fish to the boat - also expected, unfortunately. Third trip one Snakehead and a broken outboard (the outboard was my fault, and not totally unexpected). Fourth - is there ever a four on Sexyloops? - two Gourami and one Snakehead. And now this time? An explosion of fish!

We discovered something new too; Gourami can be found in certain shaded areas at certain times of the day - leading to some very exciting sight fishing. Gourami is all about sight fishing, and using dry flies. Watching their reaction to the fly is something else. If a fish can ever be considered smart then it is the Gouram - "The King of Dry Fly Fishes".

Without a doubt this has been the best four days Gourami fly fishing I’ve seen on this lake so far. Not only that but it undoubtedly provides another corner piece to the Jungle Puzzle and corner pieces are always a great find.

If you are thinking of fishing with me, then be aware that this is a “one fish a day fishery” and often it’s hard to get even one. On your first trip here I’m happy if you catch one fish your entire trip! It is the hardest fly fishing you will ever do, bar none. Snakehead in particular are the hardest fly casting shots on the planet; the first time you come it's quite possible that no Snakehead will even see your fly. Giant Gourami are complicated fish to hook and especially complicated to land. While Chuan has it nailed, he has fished with me many times now, and so has a ninja skill set.

Yes this is called “managing expectations”!

However if you do want to visit I’m very happy to teach you this fishing. My daily rates are 1000RM/day or alternatively you can hire a boat from me for 500RM/day and we will fish near each other. Or a combination of the two. Compared to other international destinations this is excellent value for money in part because it’s a case of the one-eyed-king leading the blind but also this is a friends' price. If you are an annoying person, have high expectations or are accident prone, then please don't come.

One thing is certain you will alwas leave a better fly caster than when you came!

I have a bit of organising to do in the early part of this week. We have fly rods going out left right and centre - which is great of course (thanks for that!) - and I’m going to add headlamps to the shop this week (I’ve found a superb headlamp from a US manufacturer which I use, has survived a year in my hands - or technically speaking, on my head - and therefore plan to sell).

I’m looking forward to testing new prototype rods soon (current orders are prevented Lee building them up - customers have priority!). And then I shall be chasing Gourami on my own; Chuan has left a few untouched and I think there is a bit of magic still to be made.

Incidentally, we have a great fish photo courtesy of Aitor for the Hot Torpedo Competition Entrants and the shirts will be made shortly. I shall be contacting everyone later this week. It's going to spectacular.

And now here is some fish porn...

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Cheers, Paul