Denise Randall and daughter Michelle hold an absolutely beautiful 20″ rainbow trout caught recently in Central California using a custom G. Loomis 5 wt. fly rod and for good luck a G. Loomis hat. Husband Scotts says this rainbow was released so another angler could have some fun in the future. Well done, ladies!
Every day we talk to many of you on the phone, via email, and often have the great pleasure of actually meeting you person-to-person in our store. Occasionally we get something special. Something very, very special. Such was the case last month when our great friend and customer, Bob Daly, sent us a “blow by blow” account of a recent fishing trip to Papua New Guinea. Matter of fact, it was so interesting, so well written that we asked Bob if he would mind us sharing it with all of you. Imagine our delight when Bob said “yes”.
So without further ado here’s Bob’s story of a Once In A Lifetime fishing trip to Papua New Guniea. Enjoy!
PAPUA NEW GUINEA-BADDEST BASS ON EARTH by Bob Daly
Having had the opportunity to chase monster freshwater fish in practically every region of
this planet, our group has talked of fishing for Papua New Guinea black bass for years. After
much planning by friend Steve Ryan, the dream would come true as we booked a trip to
venture into the remote jungles of the Gulf Province lead by Jason Yip of sportfishingpng.net.
Jason leads a few groups into this remote region targeting trophy black bass and barramundi.
Much tackle preparation went into this trip, far exceeding any trip I had previous taken. On
advice from well known angler, Larry Dahlberg, I spooled my Shimano TranX HG with 200 lb.
PowerPro. I used a short/stout heavy duty Quantum saltwater jigging rod as Larry said these
bass are the meanest on earth and will destroy your tackle. Friend Steve Yatomi has previously
fished for PNG bass and says ” you cannot hunt elephants using a peashooter” as he lost a few
monsters on his last trip. I replaced all lure split rings with the super strong Wolverine Triple
coiled rings and all hooks with super strong Owner ST-76. I now felt confident I had the right
tackle to handle these bass on steroids as I most likely could stop a car with this gear!
July 22nd finally arrived. We left Chicago for a flight to Los Angeles. A good meal was eaten
before the long flight to Brisbane Australia. We had a few hours layover before a flight to Port
Moresby, PNG. We flew past the date line so none of us knew what day or time it was!
Jason had arranged his staff to greet us at the airport and drive us to the Holiday Inn. We had a
great meal with Jason and some of the PNG tourism staff before getting some much needed
Early in the morning Jason along with his 16 ½ ft bass boat plus another truck, packed to the
rim with equipment, picked us up for a 5 hour drive into the remote jungles heading to his
lodge in the Gulf Region. Here, we were greeted by the local village tribe who were extremely
We were lead to a very comfortable lodge which was built by missionaries. We slept
in comfortable mosquito netting beds. The lodge was 2 story building complete with dining
room, living room, hot showers, etc.. all the comforts of home! We unpacked our gear and
were boated to the river mouth to attempt to land a few monster barramundi which roam near
the sea. Steve landed a few big barras along with Kevin. John battled the first black bass, a
respectable 20lbs, but lost a few monsters as his reel’s drag locked up.
Mosquito netting beds were very comfortable even though the mosquitoes were not bad at all
The next day we headed to the outpost camp which is about a 2 hour boat ride from the main
Lodge, Terapo Mission. We fished along the way on the Lake Kamu River which was on the
low side and unusually cold at upper 70 deg temps. The outside temperatures were very
pleasant at a cool 78 deg. We all had previously fished in the Amazon jungles for peacock bass
and were expecting extremely hot, humid conditions. About an hour into the ride, all of the
boats hit a hot spot filled with numerous log jams which are everywhere. I hooked into a “freight
train” as I was pulled from the back of the boat to the front only to fall on my face. After
regaining my senses, I keep the “train” out of the snags and am rewarded with the bass of my
dreams. The monster pegged out my certified 35 lbs scale, of which we estimated 40 lbs. The
monster was landed on a silver/black giant Rapala Shad rap touched up with my traditional red
Fishing for black bass is a chore. These guys become extremely lure shy and the trophy bass
really use the log snags to their advantage. They are very powerful and destroy the best of
lures. However all the preparation I did on my lures really paid off. My Owner ST-76 hooks
were slightly bent, but the bass was still landed. Others in the group also hooked into
monsters , but were either ran into the snags or lures destroyed losing the brutes!
Traveling downriver, we see numerous tribal camps. It seems each village we pass has the
natives running out of their huts to wave a greeting to us. Numerous children are seen paying
on the beaches. Women are seen washing clothes in the river, while a few men are seen in their
canoes gathering their netting in hope of a nights meal of small bait fish.
After a great day of fishing, we arrive at the outpost camp which exceeded the groups
expectations. A newly built lodge was built by the local natives along with Jason’s staff
consisting of 6 upstairs bedrooms complete with bedding and mosquito nets. The outpost has a
very comfortable hot shower. Laundry is provided by the locals. The meals were fantastic as
we dined on chicken, chops, steaks, fish, etc.. during our stay. The nights were actually cool
which made sleeping very comfortable.
During out stay at the outpost camp, I presented the locals with numerous gifts. Tom Ashby
of the American Legacy Fishing Company donated a bunch of hats, shirts, and duffel bags
which the kids and guides made great use of. Cargill donated a bunch of notebooks of which
the elders were presented and numerous small soccer and footballs which the kids could
be seen playing with each day.
The second day at the outpost turned out to be a red letter day for Kevin Cleary. Kevin landed
numerous big barramundi exceeding 40 lbs. Later Kevin hooked into a snag which moved!
After a head shaking jump, the biggest barra I have laid eyes on was somehow put into Kevin’s
boat. The barra pegged out the 60 lbs certified on a Boga grip. The guides estimated the trophy at 70 lbs.
Later that day, Jason had arranged for the group to visit the local village school. Here a
celebration was planned, as we were all greeted by a welcoming committee where school girls dressed in traditional wardrobe put beautiful flowers around our necks.
We were presented with golden rulers which we gave back to the school principle along with our
donations to the school. Kids from various tribes move into this area to have the opportunity to
attend school. Pigeon is the language which is a form of English so we had no problem
communicating with everyone. We toured the school and the village. The villages consisted of
numerous wooden huts along with a basketball court! The principle of the school had the kids, who were all dressed in their school uniforms, preform various drill formations for us. The kids
were fantastic and well mannered!
The elders had a few items for sale. I bought a great bow and arrow which I will put on my
wall as a reminder of the trip.
The next day fishing was going good for monster fish. Cole Lundquist tells us at dinner that
the has landed a monster bass weighing 42 lbs. The current world record is 42 lbs 5 oz, so Cole is close. The trophy was landed on a Rapala giant shad rap.
Later that evening Jason Yip said he took some time off of guiding and spent a few hours
fishing. He landed the biggest bass he has caught at a whopping 46 lbs which is a new World
Earlier in the day I had an amazing ½ hour of fishing. Our guide, Angus, recommended I try
a mag 15 Rapala in bunker coloration. I land a 40 lb barra on my 3rd cast, a 27 lb black bass on
my 5th cast, then a 38 lb barra on my 8th cast before the lure was destroyed. As you would figure, this was the only mag 15 Rapala I had in bunker coloration!!
The jungle is very similar to the Amazon. However there is a noticeable lack of wildlife and
birds. A few locals can be seen in canoes taking fruits back to Port Moresby.
Due to very low water some of hot spots were extremely difficult to reach. We had to motor
through a maize of log jams often ramming the motor into submerged wood. I’m sure Jason’s
staff has an abundance of motor propellers, as most probably do not last a week. The boats are
very comfortable. Jason’s is a modern bass boat with casting platform equipped with
depth finder. Steve and I brought along our depth finders which we occasionally used. The
other 2 boats were 16 t comfortable aluminum boats.
Later in the day, John Cross and I decided to do some trolling. John hooks into a monster
barra estimated at 52 lbs. The trophy does some head shaking leaps before John lands it. The
barra is again landed on a giant Rapala shad rap. We were guided by Angus Donald who has a
vast knowledge of the fishery and has won many local bass tournaments.
On the final day we decide to fish near the outpost on the way back to camp. Kevin hooks
into a huge black bass weighing in at 40 lbs.
Later in the day, Jim Reed, hooks into something which pulls his boat side to side. After a few
jumps we realize Jim has a monster barra hooked. After expert technique, Jim boats the beast
which pegs out the scales. The barra is estimate over 70 lbs. The barra is landed on a mag 15
Rapala in bunker!! The barra along with Kevin’s breaks the lodge record of 63 lbs landed last
Obviously by the size of the fish landed during our stay, larger scales are a must!
On our last evening we are treated by chef Sydney to a great T-bone steak! Sydney really
took care of us with great meals each day. All of us tried small black bass and barramundi
which were delicious. I was the only brave one in the group to try the local betelnut which
taken with mustard stick dipped in lime, turns your mouth and teeth blood red. Believe me you
get a buzz unlike anything else you have done a few minutes into biting into this mixture. I
was also sweating bullets! After ½ day I felt back to normal, but can now boast of being
a native PNGian!
After leaving the lodge we stayed overnight in Port Moresby and had a wonderful dinner with
Jason and his family. The next day Kevin, Cole, and I spent the evening in Brisbane Australia
where Cole and Kevin had the wine of their lives!!! Earlier in the day we took an hour long
train ride to purchase some Australia black bass lures!
The trip was a dream come true! All of us exceeded our monster fish expectations. The bite
number was low due to cold/low water conditions. The monster barras were an added bonus.
The best part of the trip was meeting the local tribes, meeting new friends, and of course
fishing with the best bunch I guys I know. We already look forward to landing a 50 pound bass
Bob Daly, Kevin Cleary, Cole Lundquist enjoy a PNG beer at thee Holiday Inn in Port Moresby
SPECIAL THANKS TO THE FOLLOWING
Jason Yip of www.sportfishingpng.net
Jason’s guides and staff
The tribes of PNG
Steve Yatomi of www.adventuretravelalliance.com
Cargill-Danita, Teri, and Pat
Tom Ashby of American Legacy Fishing Company www.americanlegacyfishing.com
Terry Trattner at wolverine tackle www.wolverinetackleinc.com
Kermett Adams of www.klures.com
Larry Dahlberg for his great advise www.huntforbigfish.com
Pat, Bobby, and Mike of WJOB 1230 Bass Buzz
Thanks, Bob for a great adventure and story. This issue we have some fantastic news how you can get 25% off G. Loomis rods. We also have New G. Loomis Luggage Bag is now available for Pre-Order, this bag is first class quality and is a must have for the Loomis enthusiast. New G.Loomis GLX Flipping and Crankbait models, with a free Collector’s Edition G. Loomis Catalog Offer. We also have received the brand new NRX Lite Presentation Fly Rods that are absolutely fabulous.
American Legacy has been lucky enough to receive a few of the 2013 Daiwa Steez EX Spinning reels with a free Daiwa Columbia shirt offer. One of The Best Spinning Reels on the market. Details are below.
If you had missed out on seeing the Jacob Wheeler interview from his visit to the store, here’s the short interview about his recent win as well as techniques used to get him this monumental win: http://youtu.be/HMp-43FgG_Y
As Fall slowly approaches we have some great stuff we will be telling you about in future issues. It will be a very exciting Fall and we hope everyone will join us for the ride. Once again we want to thank everyone for their support. We are here only because of your friendship and patronage. It is very, very much appreciated!