My friend Harry Abbott has fished all over the place but one of the most unusual fishing destinations has been the remote jungle rivers of Thailand. He has often told me how interesting his experiences there were, not just from a fishing point of view, but from the point of view of wildlife and culture.

He was digging around in his computer the other day and found a couple of entries from his Thailand diary and sent them over to me. They are fascinating, and  he was kind enough to let me reproduce them here together with some of the photographs he took at the same time.

Take it away Harry……

Khan stream today. Tried my new wading trousers but they ended up a dissappointment as we had to wade beyond their depth .

Fished large dry flies on rod belonging to Jonas as my suitcase didn’t arrive and had to have it sent on by airasia to local village and we then had to send a boat one and half hours single journey to village to collect it.  Jonas flies would not float and I changed to a green foam grasshopper/cicada which we had seen on dinner table night before and low and behold the masher loved it!
Stopped at 10.15 for early lunch! Hut had beautiful fried rice dish for us. No cooking on a fire today. David loved it all and caught lots of fish although he struggled with the sinking flies as well. Lots of good photos.
Didn’t count but guess I had about 20 plus  fish around 1.5to2.5 pounds.
Some beautiful fish especially the blue masher with golden bodies but blue fins.
Got well into the mountains and then tropical rain storm hit us and we had to head for home. River Rose very fast and we linked arm together in the water for most of the return to give us more stability,six legs better than two, especially for me as I had rubber soled boots which were very very slippy on the stones….definitely should have been using felt soles. I was virtually swimming at one point as the river Rose and became coloured. David went in totally at least once as did Jonas but I was lucky enough I didn’t actualy fall in although I was up to my chest. We had put the  cameras in a waterproof bag so they were ok even with the severe dunking we got. River now dirty and high.
Eventually got down to the boat and Hut, the native guide/boatman was waiting for us…….totally soaked but warm enough so we went to try for snakehead….saw a few moving but no luck.
Back to CHEOW LAN and a wonderful dinner chilli beef dish and a sweet sour dish . A group of young dutch animal earners arrived but a group of them decided it wasn’t,  for them and left by long boat well after dark.
David and I played rummy after dinner but electric went off early at 8 .oo so headed to bed…..set up hammock which is where I am writing this while a radio of one of the native fishermen plays Thai music in the background….wonderful !! Electric back on…must have put more petrol in the generator.
My suitcase arrived back presumably on the boat that took the Dutch students back so things are more relaxed but not sure how will manage for clothes to fish in tomorrow. Everything soaked, picked up 2 leeches ,one on my back and one one my chest. David had 2 on his neck.
Du ring the day we saw monitor lizard  about 1.5m long at top o f a drowned tree , deer a few times but no monkeys although we heard gibbons, saw boar, osprey, falcon,swallows swifts,martins, one kingfisher.
Friday diary

Today we drove for about an hour and a half to the NGAO national park  about 50 miles from Burmese border. Then we went through long procedures to get permissions to go fishing. Passed through several military checkpoints as we got closer to Burma  (the locals here still call it Burma). Drove for about another half hour inside the park then changed to a 4 wd truck for the next hour or so. Passed through many Karen villages and people in traditional dress .

 Rice and soy harvest well underway today so very interesting journey in spectacular jungle scenery. Sad to see the slash and burn of the jungle were they farm the rice. Beautiful children greeting us with
an innocence long gone in Europe.
Had to meet with the village head man to finalise the permission to fish as the Karen people get paid to look after the fish.
By now we are right up on the Burmese border just a few miles away and the guides don’t want to go any closer without army protection but it is all very relaxed here with no signs of any bother.
It is a wide river, maybe 50 m, and at the first village we fish one very large pool but without success. The most exciting thing was crossing the river, one of the “water boys” got washed away and had to swim. Luckily the current was sweeping round to the shore at the bend so he had no problem. We had our own problems with that as well and we crossed back linked together for more stability against the current but it was barely enough we very nearly were all washed away David did get washed off his feet and saved by the fact that we were linked and by help of another guide who met us halfway with a long bamboo stick to grab.  A scary experience I would not care to repeat, it could so easily have gone wrong.
Moved  upriver to another beautiful part of the river and caught one golden masheer but lost one really large one that just ran and threw the hook.
Late back to Mae Sariang and then out to dinner with the guides and “water boys” to a place just outside town  “velly VIP” we were told and it was velly good. :-).   beautiful food but no chance of remembering the dish names……much better food up here than anywhere else I have been but maybe that is because we let the guide order.  Whole meal of about 6 or 7 mains courses and drinks was about £20
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