Thailand Fishing Holidays
Phil Bell-Scott from the Isle Of Man embarked on a 10 day Thailand fishing holiday, beginning with freshwater stingray fishing Thailand. The day before Phil left the UK for sunny Thailand he saw Robson Green guided by Fish Thailand land a 500lb freshwater stingray on TV - if Robson could catch a stingray in a days fishing then would it be possible for Phil?
Freshwater Stingray Fishing Thailand
Arriving at the Bang Pakong River in Chachoengsao for 9a.m the Penn tackle was setup - gratefully sponsored to Fish Thailand by Penn themselves. Fish Thailand have caught big stingray in a day many times before but never as quick as today. The first bait was rowed out into the river, then as the second bait was being taken out the sound of the first rod's screeming reel had everyone slightly confused and then shocked; as it was alarmingly apparent that a stingray had already hit the bait!
Quickly into action, Phil was dressed up with all the safety equipment, harness, belt & life jacket. Typically it is not advised to clip the harness to the reel in such circumstances and so Phil stood up and pumped the boat out to the fish. Once over the stingray Phil assumed the sitting position using the boat to take the strain of the stingray as he sat there keeping the pressure on all the time. A relatively short 45 minute fight saw a decent sized freshwater stingray of approx 300lb surface - The Fish Thailand Team cut away the weight, took hold of the stingray, wrapped a towel around it's barb and proceeded to the shore. A very happy crew and Phil celebrated the early capture and returned back to base; was there time for another?
After the first stingray Phil said it wouldn't matter at all to him if no others were caught - but it had to be tried! After a long wait and at 3:30p.m the second run of the day broke the silence and the procedure of getting above the fish out in the middle of the river was undertaken quickly and efficiently by Phil and The Fish Thailand Team. Only this stingray was obviously much bigger, it was able to hold the heavy big game tackle at maximum load in mid-water. The terrifying sign of a huge stingray is one that does not need to bury itself in the river bed to hold position; it just sits comfortably at half depth as if it is not even hooked!
Relatively quickly the stingray surfaced, and as everybody was a little confused about it's ease to surface all of a sudden it bolted straight back to just above the bottom. It became apparent that the stingray hardly knew it was hooked and not until it was coaxed to the surface did it 'wake up' then the fight took on another level.
Over an hour had passed and no gain was made - that is an hour of maximum pressure on a stingray with no signs of tiring. As we approached the second hour of the fight Phil began to make line back - he was relieved to be gaining after all that time. Again the stingray came within a few feet of the boat and bolted back to near the river bed once again. Phil's determination eventually beat the fish back to the boat after a further thirty minutes - but it was not over yet. Although the stingray was weakening - it was not totally beat and took a further fifteen minutes of it wallowing near the surface layers to overpower and for the guides to secure the fish.
After a total fight time of 2hrs 45mins the photo shoot began - in 4 foot of soft mud! A wonderful experience for Phil who will never forget the day he landed a brace of giant freshwater stingray from the Bang Pakong River in Thailand. What is exceptional about this day was that Phil played both fish from start to finish completely by himself. He did not have to hand over the rod for assistance at any point in a total of 3hrs 30mins fight time over the two stingray he caught.
This is only the start of the Thailand fishing holiday for Phil, as of tomorrow his brother and father arrive in Thailand to join him the next five days fishing holiday in Thailand.