Size: 20 rai (3.2 hectares)
Species: Giant Mekong to 50Kg; Striped Catfish; Tilapia; Common Snakehead; various Asian Carp species
Opening Hours: 8am to 6pm
Cost: 300 Baht rod/day inc. two bags of bait; 500 rod/day if renting the tackle. Reduced prices for afternoon sessions; click the link below to check details on their website.
Weblink: Visit Bo Sang’s own website here
Contact Info: Tel. 053-338-537 or 083-320-9213
Google Maps link: here
Bo Sang Fishing Park, otherwise known as Paradise Lake, is primarily a big catfish venue, with nearly all anglers having this as their target species. If big catfish is what you are after then you are going to love Bo Sang Fishing Park – at least the first few times that you visit, and especially if you are there during the hotter part of the year when the fish are most active (March to October). Don’t be put off if you are visiting outside of these times; the lake is full of fish and they can be fairly easily caught all year round. You’ll just catch more during the hotter part of the year when the water is warmer and the fish more active.
It is super easy to catch big cat fish at Bo Sang (up to 50Kg, but you will be doing very well to pull out anything bigger than 20Kg). Believe it or not, this is kind of a problem… When you first begin to fish there it is great; fighting with huge fish for half an hour or more, then casting back in and having another screaming run five minutes later. BUT, this gets to be hard work, and I find myself almost feeling sorry for fish that seem almost desperate to see what the bank-side looks like!
The best way I can describe Bo Sang is a fish-in-a barrel lake. Now, don’t get me wrong, you will love it at first, and the fish are huge. My advice, if you live in Chiang Mai, is simply to not overdo fishing there and end up bored. Once you have been there there enough times to pull out one of the 20Kg + specimens give it a rest and save it for going to with visiting friends. It is always my first choice to take friends who want to hook into a “big un”, and it never fails to impress.
Especially good times to fish are between 10am and lunch, and then again later in the afternoon, from 3 to 6pm.
Bo Sang Fishing Park has a restaurant, a shop with tackle and cold drinks (including beer), and toilets. Shade is available at various spots around the lake, some from trees and also from purpose built shelters – albeit a bit ramshackle at times. To keep your options as open as possible it is advisable to take a seat of some kind.
Fishing Methods: Fishing for these big catfish pretty much follows the standard Thai method. A ball of dampened chopped up bread and bread flake (with additives of your choice, such as coconut) compacted around a wire “cage” feeder provides casting weight and groundbaiting. This is left free to slide up the line. Below it is a bead, then a swivel link. From the swivel is a short braided line hook length (about 15 – 20cm) with a largish hook baited with more bread, and perhaps a polystyrene ball to counter the hook weight. For detailed information on feeder fishing on the bottom see here; with a float see here.
Cast this rig out towards the middle then loosen your clutch (or set the “baitrunner” on your reel, if you are lucky enough to have one). Sit back and wait for a screaming run.
At this point if you didn’t loosen your clutch you will see your rod sliding quickly into the water – enjoy the swim. If, however, you had loosened it, you need to partially tighten it, hold the side of the spool firmly and “strike” into the fish. As you play the fish you will then need to adjust the clutch until you have it working with the right amount of tension to tire the fish without snapping your line.
This is all a real pain; buy a “baitrunner” type reel at the first chance you get and avoid all this clutch altering nonsense. Note that they are not very common, and expensive, in Thailand. If you have the opportunity to buy a “baitrunner” before you come then do so and save some cash.
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