Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Some nice GTs for Christmas

Well it was supposed to be a Boxing Day treat from me and to me, but that was scuppered by yet another last minute call from my normal boat saying they had mechanical problems. That's happened far too many times lately and not happy about it.

But it turned out to be a blessing in disguise as a call to my old buddy Adhek had us fixed up to go out today instead on his boat, the excellently named GT1.

The spin cycle was on maximum
Upon arrival at the main Bali GT site at Batu Abah it was clear we could be in for a good day. The spin cycle was on full, possibly the wickedest water I have ever seen out there (and that is saying something).

Third cast of the day resulted in a big hit and a big line failure - the first time I have ever had that with Varivas GT Max PE8, it just pinged. Despite that disappointment, a lure bag minus one GT3 150 and lots of friendly banter from Adhek about setting my initial drag too high, it had to be a good sign.

And it sure was, as the next 6 hours of casting resulted in 7 beauties making it to the boat, and either 16 or 17 GT strikes in total (I lost count). Biggest was 27 kgs and the smallest 10. If I could have added a 40 kg+ fish to that mix then it would have gone down as a truly vintage Bali day. That fish was indeed hooked, then stripped about 120 metres of line before I managed to pull the hook only about 20 metres from the boat.

One notable event was catching consecutive fish with the first two casts with my new Super Popping 80M, out on its first trip in my hands. Indeed, the fourth cast resulted in a bust off as well. I get the feeling I am going to like this rod :). Thanks to Andy Rowe for being kind enough to sell it to me! Set up with a SW10000 loaded with PE6 and a 120 gram Venus, it is a perfectly balanced medium weight popping unit.

Aside from the exciting fishing, it was great to catch up with Adhek in person after many months of not seeing him. The man is a pioneering legend of our sport, and I could talk fishing with him forever. From no more than 20 test casts, we had three strikes on his new prototype sinking stickbait - and when I say prototype I really mean it. A piece of beautifully shaped mahogany with a layer of clear coat on it - no paint in sight. I suggest everyone watches out for this hitting the market - it could be an instant star. Completely different shape to any other sinking stick I have used.

Star lures were Craftbait GT3 170, Adhek Venus 120, the afore-mentioned Adhek protoype and Carpenter Kattobi . Did not cast a surface stick all day which was hardly surprising given the water conditions.

All in all in really enjoyable day's fishing. After some fairly terrible trips out there in recent months, it was so good to see the Batu Abah site back to producing good fish.

(ps, I apologise for the dirty tea towel on my thighs. The crew thought my shorts were far too nice to be slimed).

Rods: an all Carpenter day: MH80H, EP82/38, SP80M, BLC83/40.
Lures: Craftbait GT3 170 and 150, Adhek Venus, Adhek prototype sinker, Carpenter Kattobi, Heru Cubera 150, Heru Bobara 150.


  1. Some really nice GT's. One day I would like to fish there.
    I know Adhek by emails only as I stock his lures in my shop.
    Well done.
    Tight lines

  2. Hi Sunset! Great Blog and Pics! You should start your own fishing magazine! I've got some questions regarding Bali Fishing and I am sure that you can help me. I am an absolute light tackle enthusiast from Austria and thinking of going to Bali for a DIY fishing trip. I'm thinking of travelling to Bali and do some beach fishing for small GTs, Cuda etc. My plan would be to stay in one of the surf camps and do some spinning from the near beaches. I got experience in that type of fishing from Australia, Maldives and the Med-Sea in Europe. I would also take my heavy fly rod and give it a try. Do you have a specific hint for me where to go and where to stay? All assistance would be highly appreciated. My Mail adress is dergerdweber@hotmail.com Thank you & Tight lines! Gerd

  3. Hi!
    First of all I must congratulate you on a great blog. Informative and very interesting!
    I'm an avid fisherman from Sweden and will arrive at Bali on feb 18th. I have never tried popper fishing, but I'm determined to go on one of these charters during my two-week stay.
    Would you recommend going with Adhek? Your last post is pointing in that direction at least;)
    I'm bringing my girlfriend on this vacation, but since I'm the only one fishing I would love some company in the boat.
    Please let me know if you are interested in splitting one of these charters during feb 22 - mar 2nd.
    Tight lines!
    Johan Holmberg

  4. Hi Mark,

    I'm arriving to Bali on 24th of January and I thought I'd ask some tips from you which fishing charter to choose for GT popping in Bali area? Also if you are interested in joining shared GT popping trip on any day between 25th of Jan and 1st of Feb please let me know. I'm fishing alone so there will be room for other fishers as well.

    Also if some other visitor is looking for a GT popper fishing in Bali during 25th of Jan - 1st of Feb 2012 please drop me a message :) You can contact me by e-mail: info@nordicangler.com


  5. Hi Mark
    Got your name from the sealine forum. Some beautiful fish there. How often do you go out GT fishing in Bali? I am thinking of a trip out there (from HK) at the end of April in order to try catch some. Not sure if you were planning on a trip around that time, but if you were pls let me know.

  6. Wow, those are big catches! I never thought Bali is a good place for fishing, because the place is more popular with their beach and sand. Well, those pics prove that fishing is great in Bali, Indonesia. More GT fishers should go there and try to get the same size catch as yours.

    [Simone Gambler]

  7. Hi Mark,
    I'm a really keen fisherman and am absolutely obsessed with jigging and popping. I have a holiday coming up in July (20th-29) and a mate and I have decided to travel Bali. I found your blog whilst doing research and it seems you are a 'go to man' when it comes to popping and jigging Bali. I'd like to know from you where the best places are to fish around there? I've done allot of reading and i'm getting mixed messages. Some say the fish stocks are not being conserved whilst others rave about the place. What is your opinion? If you were to spend the money on a fishing destination in or near Bali where would you go? I'd also like to know if the end of July is a good time for travelling and fishing Bali? Further, we are both young guys and so our pockets aren't as deep as a more settled man such as yourself so we are thinking about cost. I've looked at Mr Adheks site and $1200 for a days fishing is really steep, especially when we are just two guys. Are there other more affordable charters that are still able to put us into some good fish?
    Thank you kindly, I realize I've asked allot of questions.
    Kurt Holtzhausen (holtzhausen.kurt@gmail.com)

    1. Hi Kurt

      Sounds like you and I are thinking the same as my questions and thoughts are identical... Please let me know if you find any thing good. I am headed there next week otherwise we could have linked up and gone 3 ways on a charter. I emailed Adhek and he said the fishing at this time of year is not great unfortunately as the water is cold and rough... Typical good timing on my behalf! Supposedly fishing around Nusa Penida is good...
      Anyway, tight lines!


  8. Hi

    Love your blog... Very jealous! My questions are almost identical to Kurt's above so any advice you had there would be awesome. What's the fishing like at this time of year? I hear cool and rough sea means GT's dissipate and am debating whteher it is still worth taking my kit?? Can one catch GT's or any other decent fish from the shore, and if so where would you suggest? I also plan to take my fly rod... Just in case... Any suggestions you have would be really appreciated!


  9. Hi Mark congratulation for the catch it is cool
    im often to fishing at north west bali if you dont mind visit my blog's :
    north west bali is a migration rute of billfish,tuna and whale. GBU

  10. Hi – Will you please post a link to your Blog at The Deep Sea Fishing Community? Our members will love it.
    It's easy to do, just cut and paste the link and it automatically links back to your website… it’s a win win. You can also add Photos, Videos and Classifieds if you like. It’s free and easy.
    Email me if you need any help or would like me to do it for you.
    The Deep Sea Fishing Community: http://www.vorts.com/deep_sea_fishing/
    James Kaufman, Editor

  11. I have a friend who loves to tour around Asia, and he went to Bali as well. He did some diving and snorkeling, but not fishing. Haha. I wonder why? Well, Bali’s economy incorporates the fishing industry, so if you happen to visit the place, you shouldn’t be surprised to see a lot of people fishing, just be amazed with how many big fish you might see! :D

    Melanie Daryl

  12. Di tunggu postingannya lagi.

    Jigging tips : http://fishing-reels-japan.blogspot.com/

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  18. Hi im going to Bali 23 january and need some advice on fishing in Bali!
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  19. Hi there! i will be visit Bali in a few months and i will bring my rods of course. Just for asking you about any good(cheap) jigging or popping trip, and if you know any good place or tip for doing landbased casting-popping as well? Any tip from you will be weel received! Thanks email : marcos_checa4@hotmail.com or just reply the comment or in my blog. thanks !!!

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