Sunday, November 14, 2010

Welcome to Bor Sang Fishing Park

One of Stray's fellow TEFL students (S) introduced him to Bor (or Bo) Sang Fishing Park last week, so I had to go and have a sticky beak myself. Getting there wasn't as straight forward as we'd hoped, but we made it eventually, despite the English sign being located well and truly INSIDE the car park. A minor, major detail overlooked by our direction givers.
A half day arranged tour to this place costs around 1500 Baht +, but if you show up on your lonesome, you'll pay around 250 Baht for entry, rod hire and bait (no charge to watch) and I doubt you'd be able to sustain pulling in these monsters for a whole half a day anyway. The park is open from 9 am to 10 pm, and the fishing is better at night.
The lake is stocked with two types of catfish, local Thai and Mekong Giant. One legendary 50 kg Mekong, apparently lurks in the depths of the urban myth, who knows? Most caught on the night were between 20 - 30 kg. The Mekong Giant Catfish are a protected species here and since this is a 'park' = captive audience, it's strictly catch and release.
Baiting up requires squishing bread on and around the hook, tight enough so it doesn't fly off while casting. There's a deep hole about 35 metres out from the bank, where a lot of the catfish like to hang out. It's not uncommon to hear a sudden barrage of Thai expletives when someone gets a bite. Nicely put 'get your bleeping lines out of the water' directed at those close enough to have theirs in the way.

When a fish is 'on' the angler will smack water's surface with the tip of the rod and pull it up quickly, the spray of water shows everyone (including the angler) exactly where the line is....remember it's dark!

Stray with a local catfish. He's a long time keen fisherman.
S with a Mekong looks upside down, and is, which places those spooky looking eyes on the very lower part of the head. It's not what you'd call a pretty fish. 
The inner entrance to the lake has a kiosk and restaurant area...
...or you can have your meal delivered to a table under one of the shelters around the lake, for around 30 - 60 Baht per dish.
Call me chicken, but I didn't try my hand at it. I've only ever caught a few fish in my life and thought they'd be titanic, judging by the weight on the end of the line...while they were still in the water...only one was ever fry pan worthy.

After watching the blokes struggle I reckon I would have ended up wet and muddy, losing a rod, or both!

Here's a Google map of EXACT location, if you're interested. Heading north on 1014 (Bor Song Rd, which changes into Buakped Road), the entrance is just past Soi Buakped 11 on the left. If you encounter another Soi, you've gone too far. A white sign written in Thai, with a Pepsi logo, is your only other clue unless you can read Thai.

View Bor Sang Fishing Park in a larger map

And, if you want to know a bit more about the Mekong Giant Catfish click here :)

Snap's other blog Chiang Mai Thai