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Goonch & Golden Mahseer

Goonch & Golden Mahseer

We had the pleasure of hosting our first guests from Greece. Sakis and his wife Tsapi booked a customized 10 day expedition trip for the elusive giant Himalayan Catfish – The Goonch and the Himalayan Golden Mahseer. 8 months after the initial contact and a number of emails back and forth with tackle advice, weather and expectations we were finally picking up Sakis and his wife at 6.00 am from the Delhi International airport. We were soon driving out of a still sleeping Delhi and after a short breakfast pit stop sampling South Indian fare of Idli, Vada, sambar & chutney we were off again. Lunch was North Indian fare and then we were driving past the famous Corbett National park. We stopped for the night halt was at a beautiful small resort on the banks of the Ramganga and after an early dinner the guests were grateful for a comfortable bed to sleep on. The next morning, after an early breakfast and a couple of hours of driving through the picturesque Ramganga valley, Sakis and Tsapi began making their way down to the river bank on horses. Our group evoked a lot of interest & excitement amongst children whenever they passed through small hamlets and villages. The last part of the journey involved crossing the Ramganga River on horseback and soon they were being welcomed at the camp specifically set up for the trip. Chilled drinks and a hearty lunch followed a bit of limb stretching and then the rods were prepared and lines were cast. As soon the first rod was cast, unbelievably line started going out....
In search of the Himalyan Golden Mahseer

In search of the Himalyan Golden Mahseer

As usual it all began with an email: an invitation to fish for Mahseer in the northern most reaches of India on the border with Nepal, at the very base of the magical Himalayas. Mahseer is a fish I cut my teeth on, way back in the early nineties when we fished for the huge Tor Mussalah. This time however it was going to be a more predatory cousin, the Himalayan Mahseer or Tor Putitora. Almost at the brink of extinction there are very few wild rivers where the magnificent Mahseer remains to this day in sizeable numbers and with large specimens. Known as the largest carp in the world, THE fresh water game fish of India and for most anglers only a wish to land, this was an expedition trip which had all the highs and lows and went right down to the wire of the last session of the last day for the best reward of all, nothing less than a monster Mahseer. This report is not about numbers or species, it’s about an unparalleled experience of fishing in a wild place, I have dreamt about going to. This is the area where Jim Corbett enacted many of his daring feats with man-eating tigers and leopards of great notoriety. On 18 September 2015 the GFA team set off on an expedition to sample the Mahseer fishing in one of the remotest parts of India – to the very foothills of the Himalayan mountains. Arriving in New Delhi, India’s capital city to the maddening & chaotic traffic is an experience everyone should see to believe. We spent the...