THE BEST LURE FOR MAHSEER 507
river and have ruined it for sport It is full too of limestone caves, into which a fish dives ; and you cana t get it out again, for the line gets frayed. The largest fish I ever caught was 44 lbs., but they have been captured up to 60 lbs. In one trip Colonel Hicks, Ommaney, Bourne, and I got in five days 736 lbs. of fisha of which I got 276 lbs., Ommaney 258\ lbs., Colonel Hicks 105^ lbs., and Bourne 96 lbs. At another time in two days I caught 272 lbs. weight of fish.
1 may here, I think, conclude wild sport in Assam and the adjacent hills. I had on one occasion good pig-sticking with Williamson of the Garrow hills, below Doobree, and I wonder that the Tent Clubs of Bengal do not pay those localities a visit now and then, for the boars are of the largest and most savage. I have put them up within a few yards of a tiger !
The best lure for a mahseer is a large spoon-bait, about the size of a gravy spoon, silver on one side and gilt on the other; it should spin freely and easily, and the treble hooks should be extra strong and keen of point, for the fish have leathery lips, not easy of penetration; treble gut of the best and fully 6 feet in length ; the line should be fully 120 to 180 yards in length. Fishing in deep water, lead heavily, as the big fish remain close to the bottom ; strike moderately hard ar.d give plenty of line. Dona t be in too great a hurry to land your fish. The scales on the fish are very large and almost as tough as tin, and I found a gaff of no great usea a three-prong spear is better, if thrust into the back of the head with force it will penetrate, and your fish will be secured. Salmon flies are good for moderate-sized fish in torrents, but not of much account in smooth water. Salmon rods for trolling.
Richard Clay Sans, Limited, London 5^ Bungay.