Ring my Royal Belum

Ring my Royal Belum

Paul Arden | Monday, 30 September 2019

It’s been an interesting year this one on the lake. Very little has occurred in the sequence it has on other years! For example the “Spring” season offered very few “babies fishing” for Giant Snakehead. In previous years this has been prime-time to catch trophies.

Gourami have been stumping - I can see that from the evidence - but the actual process of stumping I haven’t seen all year! Which begs the question, when exactly are they eating algae off the stumps? At three in the morning? And as for Gourami in wind-lanes eating termites - I haven’t seen that this year either. But then again, the only time I found termites on the lake this year, has been mid-morning and this feeding is usually always an evening activity for me.

Right now should be prime-time for “free-rising” Snakehead (free because they are without babies - obviously!); large groups of Snakehead breathing air and feeding in an area, socialising perhaps, and without doubt, the most exciting, challenging, Snakehead fishing that there is. But it’s not happening! Instead we have Snakehead with babies at the moment. Go figure! Apparently the fish are rewriting the books this year.

Exciting month coming up this one: I’m building a boat (actually this will take a couple of months); the Sexyloops Mothership. It will be our jungle base to launch all fly fishing operations on the lake. It will sleep four comfortably (I don’t have that many friends!) and as well as having an onboard toilet and shower and outboard bath, it will also have a fridge - yay! Cold beer and jungle juice!

Also, on the Sexyloops flyrod front, I’ve finalised the 7’6 #3/4 wt Hot Torpedo. I’ve ordered the blanks and the rods will be available in a few months time. I’m working on other rod projects too of course but how long these will take to finish I can’t say - not because it’s a secret, but simply because I only release them when I can’t make them any better.

The Wet Season is coming up fast here in the Malaysian jungle. I’m planning to fish much more through this Wet. It’s the best time of year for Jungle Perch. These fish can be found around river mouths, while thinking about spawning (the fish, not the angler) and can be caught on sinking lines and baby snakehead imitations about 15ft down. Mind-numbingly boring of course, unless you are catching them. It’s also a time of year when you can catch Giant Snakehead and Giant Gourami very close to the banks... and you get wet doing this.

Did I mention that it rains? This is another reason why we need the Mothership. Tropical Wet Season storms can only thoroughly be enjoyed from the comfort of a dry boat, sipping cold beer and talking about the time you were sheltering under a tarp or sleeping in a wet boat pretending  that you liked it because it was hardcore. Of course you can probably only appreciate it properly if you have slept for months at a time in a wet boat or sheltered under a leaky tarp with a damp campfire for company.

During this period I also plan to spend some time on Sexyloops projects: the Fly Fishing Glossary (a method of navigating 22 years of Sexyloops content). the Sexyloops Fly Casting Challenge Award (Advanced and Elite levels), I will also finish the Belum Fly Fishing website in preparation for next season, and of course spend time with my beautiful wife!! In fact quite soon we plan to visit Thailand for a holiday together - and to buy a bull-bar for the Truck!

Flavio is visiting at the moment. He had a nice Snakehead this weekend. It’s a super photo too because it shows what I’ve been saying for years about deep nets acting as cages while you sort your shit out.

Drop me a line if you fancy fishing here. There are plenty of options at the moment. It’s not just “glamour camping” either; we have a lakeside resort close by for people who prefer a real bed to swinging in the jungle.

It’s an exploration.  :p

Cheers, Paul

PS I’m adding some photos to the jungle series today and a cool video of last month’s fishing later this week.